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|20th September 2009, 16:43||#181|
Yes gd, thats the guest house. We paid 350/room for room with attached bath
As for the 500rs fine, I asked a few taxi wallahs and also the camel wallahs, and they told me of this. Apparently many people were crossing the river in their cars, hence the camels were getting disturbed or something.
Anyways, there was enough offroad opportunity on the dirt track to diskit due to recent rains etc.,
|20th September 2009, 16:55||#182|
Pang Tso is around 45kms with India, and you can do a lot of those 45kms along the dirt track.
Normal permits are till spangmik, and that where pangong Tso permits will take you.
We had the permits for Man, Merak and chushul also, but the road was so bad that we aborted even going to Spangmik.
It was not worth the risk.
More than half the destinations were still pending. There was so much of south changthang plateau to be seen, and if I injure my back now, everything will go for a toss.
Moreoever it was so bad that certain stretches had the foot guards touching rocks.
So no point risking this trail. Moreover chushul would take 3 hours to go, and equal amount of time to come back, M.La had taken a lot of time and fuel,so maybe next time we are here...?
But even on that 5-6kms stretch there are lots of sandbanks where you can go undisturbed. No 2WD ventures there as its deep sand.
Infact I tried to go at high speed in 2WD to see if it can be done, but all I got was rear tires sunk till the axles.
But with the flick of the 4WD switch, it was no problem
This is the road to Spangmik. I am not kidding, honestly.
The shore at our second lounging location
We had carried mini cane stools, so unlike others who had to stand and watch, for us it was lounge time.
This second lounging area had stiller waters
Look at the sand
The white elephant
The tire Tracks
However we were searching for even stiller waters. With the wind it was difficult, but then they say "If you look hard enough, you can find even God"...
TO BE CONT..........
|21st September 2009, 02:14||#183|
Join Date: Sep 2009
Thanked: 2 Times
|21st September 2009, 09:44||#184|
|21st September 2009, 09:57||#185|
Join Date: Apr 2007
Wow! just when i think i've seen the best pictures, you go ahead and post even more incredible ones!
|21st September 2009, 10:11||#186|
Still waters and reflections
We do not have to search much. The entire lake is our playground now. All those day trippers are gone now, scared of the nallah(taxi's normally leave by 2pm)
Clouds form a shadow in form of lips
A close up of the lips
However the terrain is all sand. no wonder 2WDs do not come here
but soon the wind pics up again, and the reflections are lost
Time for some pics of the steed then.
Pics done, and sun going down, its time to have tea and generally check out whats the fuss about eco huts and all.
Tea is expensive, and so are the huts. They are asking 500rs. I am told if you reach in morning they will charge 250. Same Sarchu tents funda.
Meanwhile I also talk to an innova taxi driver whose clients are staying here for the night.
He says nallah is high and he will go back to leh tomorrow morning. Nowdays water gush very high after 3pm or so.
When I tell him we have 4WD, he says then no problem.
According to him, water peaks around 6pm, and till 8-9pm its madness, then after 10 the flow reduces, and if the flow is too much we may have to wait till midnight for it to subside, but again for 4WD its no issue.
No wonder the lake is empty of tourists now with all day trippers having left.
Anyways, we will be here till the stars come out, and then take our chance with the nallah etc.,
Its still quite some to sundown, and we decided to climb up the garnet hill, on foot of course.
TO BE CONT...........
|21st September 2009, 10:16||#187|
|21st September 2009, 10:22||#188|
Join Date: Apr 2004
Thanked: 4,296 Times
Fantastic stuff Tanveer! These areas look almost unreal and that feeling is also enhanced by these abnormal strong colours. Well you did use a polarizer but I'm pretty sure that even without polarizer you would have captured colours this strong.
This one especially looks extremely abnormal. Great capture!
And this is what I mean. Without polarizer and 1 and 1/3 down EV. At Sarchu.
|21st September 2009, 10:38||#189|
I did use a polarizer, but the abnormal pic has minimal polarization due to angle of sun.
In this case when we saw the scene even we were shocked. We never expected the waters to turn purple.
A section of the lake had such light that the waters were indeed appearing purple.
All I have done to all the pics in PP is level adjustment(mostly autolevels, sometimes manual level tweaking) and USM with 2.0 radius and 0.5 intensity.
In shots where dynamic range issue was there I have pulled up shadows and pulled down the highlights, thats it, but probably 1 in 50 shots had that treatment done, and none of the P.Tso shots till now have that treatment
For Pangong night scene I have pulled up exposure by 0.8-1.0 in RAW, thats it.
|21st September 2009, 10:57||#190|
Join Date: Sep 2009
Thanked: 2 Times
|21st September 2009, 11:12||#191|
Waiting for the Sun to go down
It was time to pass away an hour or more. The sun was setting, and night would fall soon.
When will the stars come out *sigh*
Some pics from the wait, and the garnet hill
The sun was setting too slowly. The moon was halfish, and the wait was tough. The lake changed colors, and started getting darker and darker. Surprisingly, this lake looks best in daytime, sunset is not a good time for photography here, which is quite opposite to most other places, where sunset is the best time.
I think since the sun rises over the lake, a sunrise at the lake would be more spectacular?
Finally the sun set, and the stars came out, and with that came out the tripod, and it was time to play!
TO BE CONT............
|21st September 2009, 11:56||#192|
When Darkness falls..... and the stars come out to play
Well darkness did not fall, thanks to the over bright moon.
But still stars were out, and it was time for the tripod, and the remote shutter release.
Early shot, only 20 seconds exposure. Sun had just set, and it was stil twilight. Only at this altitude you can see stars so early!
Next stop 87 seconds
Its 7:48pm now, time for 131 seconds exposure
A 73 seconds exposure
The longest of the day 179 seconds only
A slightly shorter one at 142 seconds.
Time now 8pm. We did not explore multiple sand locations and such because did not want to risk rocks etc., in the darkness.
Moreover moonlight was too bright to afford 15-20 minute exposures.
and last but not the least, it was getting frightfully cold.
And at the back of the mind was tension.. Tension of crossing the insane stream, aptly named pagal Nallah by the locals.
It was dark, and nallah was supposed to be at its worst.
Little past 8, it was time to bid goodbye to the most wonderful place on earth, and face our fears because as they say in mountain dew "Dar ke aage jeet hai".
For us, not facing our fear would mean no comfy bed, and no wonderful amazing hot dinner...
Time to move on then.... The nallah was waiting.....................!
TO BE CONTINUED...........
|21st September 2009, 12:46||#193|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Jul 2008
Thanked: 1,051 Times
@Tanveer:- kindly post full details, like you already doing, as opposed to only pics as suggested by you. This is truly making of an epic of a travelogue and good pics + good narration= excellent results.
|21st September 2009, 12:48||#194|
|21st September 2009, 12:52||#195|
Pagal Nallah at 8:30pm
Driving such terrain in the night and day is completely different thing.
Now till the nallah road was bad and good in patches, however I tread carefully even on good ones, because a rock on the road would be invisible.
We crossed a couple of bad patches easily without drama.
On the GPS, the road shown was straight, where its supposed to be, however when the track went down, I knew the nallah had come.
Sorry no pics, camera was packed, and my heart was in my mouth
Well as for the Nallah, No circus today.
Straight away as we left the road I engaged 4L.
On the rocky section we would inch down.
With the bumper fogs on and the main lights, visibility was okay, even on the sides, and alowly, we inched down, avoiding the sharp rocks.
We could not see the nallah. But we could hear it. through the open windows came the sound of a torrent. Nothing like what we heart in the morning when the nallah flows like a good boy.
From the sound it appeared more like kempty falls. Looks like it was going to be a rocking time.
Only saving grace, the two consecutive sections of the nallah were such that first was higher than the letter, so the rocky hump would be done downhill, and not uphill.
Soon came the site of the torrent.
There was good news and bad news.
Good news. Instead of 2 sections of nallah it was one section.
Bad news. Actually there was so much water that 2 sections had merged into one, and the water started actually good 4-5 feet before it started in the morning
So two sections with the hump in between allow you a breather, but today, its was one whole nasty river..
This was not going to be easy. Infact I was not even confident of doing it at all!
Time for reco?
Now wanting to get feet wet, I just backed up little so as to sweep the headlight beams all over the obstacles.
Moreover the water was so fast that I was scared of getting swept away!
But based on whatever little water fording experience I had, the white elephant would go through. It takes a lot more than some pagal nallah to sway the 2.5 tonne behemoth.
So it was time to get the continentals wet, as we moved inch by inch into the raging torrent.
Neck craned out, not even halfway through, the wheels were in almost to the center point, and gently on low ratio we crawled through.
Thump, the front tires fell down, we had crossed the first part.
Water is now almost till top of teh tires, and the fog lamps are submerged.
Exhaust is probably under water.
A tap on the throttle, rpm 2500 we crawl through, I can make out the wheels spinning.
Spin-Grip-Spin-Grip and then there is a sideways dance which frankly speaking scared our wits out of us, but the white elephant holds, and and soon we are rising.
Soon the nallah is over and we are on the road to Tangste....
However, its not the last obstacle, as we discovered.....
TO BE CONT............
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