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Old 12th June 2009, 18:26   #31
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Superb pics, ADC!
You are truly one to be envied!

What a charming camp that is!
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Old 12th June 2009, 22:53   #32
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Originally Posted by aqualeo2040 View Post
Would definitely like to meet you in person next time I come home.

I guess once I have my DSLR, I can be the official photographer of the trip
Absolutely you are most welcome, surely I will be to these places around mid March when there is quite enough snow for all the fun.

As of now I looking for 2 people for the Leh-Ladakh tour!!

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What a charming camp that is!
Thanks and sure it is Mr Mathur. Sikkim and North Bengal is our "Himachal" out here, though as per my visits, the pine forests are very well maintained over here than in Himachal. Himachal had more of clusters and areas of forests whereas it is like a continous belt after Siliguri starting with Neora Valley and going along N Bengal and into Sikkim.

The camp as said really like rustic kind, made of bamboo and the rooms were quite small. Of course the rate was like cheap and the other one that had just opened was more expensive and we did not know about it before. Of course we had no regret staying here - and of course that the priceless machan!!
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Old 13th June 2009, 08:10   #33
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adc boss, Jiyo, What a place. I liked the Resort a lot !! Wonderful pics.

Sikkim Tourism should give you royalty for promoting such wonderful spots to rest of the India / Globe. Sikkim has been in my wishlist for so long, dont know when to complete.

Abhi
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Old 13th June 2009, 10:39   #34
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AAAH..!
ADC >> FANTABULOUS.
Ideas and inspiration for my Nov-Dec trip.
I hope you are not bailing out for the Sept trip to Leh ?
Im all ready with lock stock and 2.2 smoking barrels.
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Old 13th June 2009, 13:59   #35
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Default Day #3 Pedong and sorroundings.

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Pedong (pop. 19,000 est.) is a town on the ancient Silk route that connects Lhasa to India via the Jelep La pass. It lies twenty kilometres east of Kalimpong on the way to Lava at an altitude of 1,240 metres (4.071 feet). The town which is located on a ridge, commands a panoramic view of the Kanchenjunga and the Himalayan mountains. The town is divided into two parts, Upper Pedong and Lower Pedong. Pedong lies on the historic Silk Road that connects India to Lhasa via the Jelepla Pass.

Near Pedong are the ruins of Damsanggudi, a fort built in 1690. Built by the Lepchas it was at the centre of the long standing feud with the Bhutias. Later, it was used to ward off the forces of the British East India Company. After the Anglo-Bhutan War of 1864, the fort fell into decay. Another highlight of the town is the Cross Hill, placed by priest Augustine Desgodins in 1882 on his way to Tibet. It is considered to have miraculous powers and is a pilgrimage site for the local Christians. St. George's School is one of the famous boarding schools in the region. So many different nursery schools are in high competition with their best efforts for the better education systems. Different villages as Sakyong, Kasyong, Dalep, Kagey, Upper Menchu, Lower Menchu have surrounded this place with their different beautiness of nature. Pedong monastery is another visited location, established in 1837.
So on day#3 after a good breakfast it is now time to go first to Pedong, ie, go backwards so that we cover the silk route from that town itself and also see some of the different places of Pedong. And who else but Mr Sebastian Pradhan himself accompanying us and as we found out he is very well known in these parts due to the untiring efforts in devloping Pedong and its surrounding places.

Along the silk route to Pedong
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3128.jpg
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St. George's Higher Secondary school is one of the most famous school of Pedong. Started by the Roman Catholic priests during the pre-independence days.
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3212.jpg

On towards Silent Valley --> 6 Km. from Pedong bazaar on the way to Ramitey. A small forest area with a grassy land of quietness
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3199ee.jpg
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Mr Pradhan collects an orchid from the forest for his ecocamp
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3138ee.jpg

On towards Ramitey top: 6,400 ft. 10 Km. from Pedong bazaar. Jeep road thru the dense forest. Breathtaking panoramic view of the rivers all around and Kancenjunga. Longest view of Tista is available only from here.
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3169ee.jpg

Last edited by adc : 13th June 2009 at 14:02.
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Old 13th June 2009, 14:17   #36
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Don't even try to tell me you drove over THAT!
Fantastic touring machine is fine but not this!

The greenery in that part of the country is to die for! Will I ever get there?
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Old 13th June 2009, 15:28   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akroy View Post
Sikkim has been in my wishlist for so long, dont know when to complete.Abhi
Around 4-6 days will be enough at least to go through at least one part of Sikkim, do try it next time when you are in Kolkata

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Originally Posted by jaysmokesleaves View Post
I hope you are not bailing out for the Sept trip to Leh ?

Im all ready with lock stock and 2.2 smoking barrels.
My Leh tour is like in suspended state - as I am on the lookout for 2 people to share costs. But surely I wil try my utmost this Sept end itself - it would be great to do those routes together and may be the 4wd safari will have to pull out the 2wd safari as we do expect very inclement weather early October in Ladakh!


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Originally Posted by anupmathur View Post
Don't even try to tell me you drove over THAT
No way, thats a huge tree trunk securely embeded on the road edge, absolutely not possible to push that. But there was just enough space by the side to squeeze through with the Safari. Ramitey view point road is absolutely through the dense forest and it was a wonderful experience to drive through
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Old 14th June 2009, 11:38   #38
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amazing place very nice photos
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Old 15th June 2009, 10:30   #39
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Really Great Stuff... ADC!

I hereby declare you the official "Tourer of Bengal". (inspired from the concept of Tiger of Bengal).

I am planning to tour Kaza-Lahaul-Spiti this October following your route plan posted on the forum.
I should be covering the Kaza-Losar-Gramphoo-Manali on 16 or 17th October. If luck has it then we'll meet up on the way.

It'd be like english movies... three Safaris (yours, jays and mine) moving in line through the mountains.
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Old 15th June 2009, 11:19   #40
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ADC
Your Rishi reminded me of Srikhola of yesteryears. Green, pristine, quiet and a pleasure to just sit back and relax. Looking forward to more exciting photographs. I really salute your wander lust.
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Old 16th June 2009, 13:56   #41
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ADC, gr8 sikkim tour with cool pics, i travelled upto lachung and went till Baba mandir which you started off yours, amazing place to be in sikkim, i believe all of sikkim is simply awesome place to be.My next trip would be on eastern side towards lachen towards the base of kunchenjanga mountain.
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Old 4th August 2009, 13:38   #42
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Default Day 3 contd. and Day 4 at Aritar and Day 5 at Zuluk homestay

In between had to be out of touch with tbph for sometime, which resulted in this abrupt break in the journey story and so let me now complete this long pending travelogue - will definitely be a good log for someone going to this absolutely uncommon place in Sikkim.

Day 3 contd. and Day 4 at Aritar and Day 5 at Zuluk homestay

Continuing with the Pedong and surroundings, from the Silent Valley green pasture we headed off to Ramitey through dense jungle just wide enough trails to Ramitey View Point


Quote:
Ramitey top: 6,400 ft. 10 Km. from Pedong bazaar. Jeep road thru the dense forest. Breathtaking panoramic view of the rivers all around and Kancenjunga. Longest view of Tista is available only from here.
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3173ee.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3188.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3184.jpg

After going back to Pedong town we proceeded to Cross hill, near Pedong

Quote:
Cross Hill: 3 Kmtrs from Pedong bazaar. The priest Augustine Desgodins laid this holy cross as a landmark cairn in 1882 on his way to Tibet thru the Nathula Pass to preach Christianity. However he had to recede as opposed by the orthodox Tibetans at that time. It is considered to have miraculous powers and a place of Pilgrimage for the local Christian Community
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We were now headed to Kashyone village, the home of Mr Sebastian Pradhan, our ever helpful host and guide.

Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3224.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3226.jpg

At Mr Pradhan's home at Kashyone village
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3230.jpg


And now again back to Sikkim across the Rishi bridge

Quote:
Rishi Bridge: 15 Km. from Pedong bazaar. Rishi and Mudum khola unites to form Rishi khola just before the bridge. West Bengal and Sikkim are on either side of the rivers. A romantic natural atmosphere.
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3247.jpg

We were now headed to Aritar by taking the very steep and old road and not the regular road. This used to be a branch off from the Silk Route via Rongli

Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3253.jpg

First gear and full throttle up the high incline road.
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3256.jpg

On reaching Aritar we spent 2 days here relaxing and visting the Aritar Lake

Quote:
Aritar Lake: 16 Km from Rishi bridge in East Sikkim. A mind-blowing echo tourism spot to enjoy boating on a mountain lake. The top point provides an excellent panoramic view of Kanchenjunga on the south-west and Nathu La and Jelep La area towards the north-east.

Love Danra: Another view point at Aritar.
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3272.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3364.jpg


After spending a good 2 days at Aritar we left early morning for your next halt at Zuluk. Just after leaving Rongli, we were the only vehicle on this route as this is pure Army territory. This uncommon roundabout route goes just past the China border as well as Bhutan territory and no private cars are allowed. But then we had managed the permits!!

Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3423.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3427.jpg

At Lingtam check post
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3448.jpg

Enroute to Zuluk

Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3472.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3492.jpg

At Padamchen check post
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3496.jpg

The roads were again very steep and as we neared Zuluk by afternoon, mist enveloped the road.
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3520.jpg

Finally at Zuluk, East Sikkim, homestay
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3528.jpg

Last edited by adc : 4th August 2009 at 13:45.
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Old 4th August 2009, 18:20   #43
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Default Day 6 from Zuluk to Gangtok via Thambi, Kupup, Tsongmo Lake

Day 6 from Zuluk to Gangtok via Thambi, Kupup, Tsongmo Lake

The previous day was spent at cozy environs of the homestay at Zuluk and walking along the small hamlet in the evening.

Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3532.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3563.jpg

and later on hearing some old tales about Silk Route porters from Gopal Pradhan, head of Zuluk village.




And the morning view of the military camp from Zuluk village was absolutely amazing

Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3572.jpg

On towards Thambi view point at 12k feet
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3604.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3607ee.jpg

and the road that we climbed
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3609.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3610.jpg
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Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3667.jpg


And at Thambi view point

Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3702.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3623.jpg
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Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3688.jpg

And the Kanchendzonga Range that is seen from there, cloudy day had most of the view block but still it was quite breathtaking
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3711.jpg
Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3690.jpg
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Along the Forgotten Trail- Silk Route-East Sikkim [Pedong-Rishi-Aritar-Zuluk-Jelepla]-img_3749.jpg

And on a clear early morning as it is actually seen. Pic courtesy of Somnath from IndiaMike whose travelogue actually led me to this tour
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Old 4th August 2009, 21:22   #44
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Stunning adc !! As always, I'm blown away with your pics and narration. Thanks for sharing...waiting for more !!
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Old 4th August 2009, 21:41   #45
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About as much fun as can be had with your clothes on!!

Last edited by anupmathur : 4th August 2009 at 21:42.
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