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Old 4th August 2013, 21:29   #31
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Cool Chushul - Nyoma - Mahe -Polokongla-Sarchu contd.

And so after a refreshing tea, we start off for the final destination of the day.
Some how its getting cold, colder than Leh

Some wiki facts
The average elevation of Leh-Manali highway is more than 4,000 m (13,000 feet) and its highest elevation is 5,328 m (17,480 ft) at Tanglang La mountain pass. It is flanked by mountain ranges on both sides featuring some stunning sand and rock natural formations.

The highway crosses many small streams of ice-cold water from snow-capped mountains and glacial melts without a bridge and it requires driving skill to negotiate fast-flowing streams.

The landscape changes immediately after getting past Rohtang Pass and entering into Chandra river valley in Lahaul region that lies in rain-shadow.

The greenery on the southern side of the mountain pass disappears and the mountain slopes on the leeward side become brown and arid. However, the mountain peaks are covered in snow and shine brightly in sun.

Leh-Manali highway is generally two lanes wide (one lane in either direction) without a road-divider but has only one or one and a half lanes at some stretches. The riding quality is not good at many places and fast speeds can cause discomfort. But the leisurely speed itself is a USP of the highway.

For normal tourists, the nearly 500 km long road is recommended to be covered in two days or more with one or more night halts along the highway because the real fun and pleasure are in the journey itself and not in reaching the destination. Awesome and breath-catching scenery and not-even-thought-of surprises along the highway should be savoured leisurely.

Some streaks of greenery can be found which is a welcome change.

The route taken

Escape to Pangong Tso-capture_179-aug.-04-21.16.gif

The highway crosses some of the highest mountain passes in the world, including Rohtang La 3,978 m (13,051 ft) in Pir Panjal range and three passes in Zanskar range that separate Zanskar valley from Leh valley, namely, Baralacha La 4,892 m (16,050 ft), Lachulung La 5,059 m (16,598 ft) and Taglang La 5,328 m (17,480 ft). The Rohtang La pass and Baralacha La receive more snowfall than the Taglang La, but all three passes are blocked in the winter . The road crosses the More plains between Lachlung La and Taglang La.

Some pictures of the important passes and vista's. Purposefully excusing myself from describing the photos and location as there are many descriptions around
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Tonight we stay at Sarchu. We have accommodations arranged. Its getting really really cold.

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With kerosene bukhari on, we freshen up with lukewarm water and catch up with the day discussions and dinner and around 11 call it a day.

For tomorrow we must cross Rohtang La.

Its getting really interesting, there are many La's to cross tomorrow, the roads are good so far, but people coming from Manali side are having opposite views as we hear. Time to find out soon.
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Old 9th August 2013, 19:04   #32
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Arrow Sarchu - Bilaspur

A good morning followed by a healthy breakfast of eggs and milk we set out towards our second last destination of the trip.

This morning is very cold indeed and i can see the sleet of ice on the safari's windshield. A lukewarm water and then the ritual of starting the engine happens.

The engine starts in the first crank.. clatter followed by smooth purrrrrrrrr in next 5 mins and off we start towards Rohtang La and likes

Few pictures of enroute with snow capped mountains and trail driving until Surtaj tal and then all of a sudden .....

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Mind you this road until Suraj tal i feel is a patience test of the man and machine for sure. The road has sunk at quiet a lot places and we had to negotiation really tough and jagged stones . The tires.. well Continental Cross contacts held good so far phew
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Old 9th August 2013, 19:31   #33
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Arrow Sarchu - Bilaspur contd...

In slow motion, the vistas turn from barren snow capped mountains to green. Lust green and waterfalls mighty high mountains tower us all along.

Many water falls on the way greet the travellers with thunderous sounds and beautiful sights

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We stop at Tandi for some garma garam Maggi.

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A delightful sight all along until the base of next climb for rohtang la.
Duly we make entries to the log and start the up hill climb. The climb is hard and the inclines are nothing short of similar to Zozila i guess, but we make it.

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Every of the tourists are in heavy jackets and boy there i am in the Tees posing

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and so we pass the famous Rohtang La and as we start the climb down, we are met with a Jam, i have a good 2 hr nap in the meantime with light rain around, we continue further

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Final picture of the day as it starts to rain.
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Near 8-9 PM we end up at the this hotel for the night.

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There are room available and we take the excellent chicken tikka masala after so many days.

With a hot shower on cards, we call it a day to wake up leisurely tomorrow.

For tomorrow , i will do what i haven't done before ever
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Old 9th August 2013, 20:10   #34
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Cool Bilaspur - Ambala - Udaipur - Thane - Pune ---> The End

After a hearty breakfast, we start home.

With sadness that we are leaving such a beautiful place on earth to head-back home. To the daily grind. To the family who are eagerly awaiting us back home.

The distance was approx 2000 kms

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The energy and the vigour is such that we drive all the way from Bilaspur to Pune with stopping briefly in night near Udaipur to catch a nap.

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Interesting thing here was that engine was continuously running all along with stopping only at fuel bunks to refuel.

And the longest it was shut-off when we met HV Kumar who was waiting for us at Thane. Sir, a pleasure meeting you.

A quick trip statistics

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don't go by the Max Speed. Some flat spots are there don't know why.

Distance: 6900 KMs

Fuel: Diesel 490 Liters.
Fuel Efficiency: 14.1 KMPL
Escape to Pangong Tso-2.png
A quick J&K State statistic on Speed and Altitude

Escape to Pangong Tso-jktrip.png
For the man and the machine, a time and place to be with oneself and nature

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For you my dear, I will be back

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Why, because the perspective offered by visiting new lands is important and allows me to appreciate the existence that we generally take for granted.


Last edited by Rahulk76 : 9th August 2013 at 20:30.
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