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Old 16th September 2009, 13:25   #91
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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
Secondly, the TASS at Leh is a TASS in name only. Engineers, or rather Engineer with laptop is mostly out in the field. Infact I was scared of even getting air filter cleaned, lest they mess up something!
Exactly what I felt, albeit with the MASS!
I had to literally ask the mechanic to back off from touching things under the hood.
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Old 16th September 2009, 13:38   #92
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Intriguingly interesting narrative and some awesome views over the Indus valley and Leh.
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Old 16th September 2009, 13:38   #93
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Originally Posted by vikram_d View Post
I did and it most definitely works. A lot of people say that it is an optical illusion. But i dont hink that it is because the compass that I had went bonkers on Magnetic hill. Also I placed a rubber ball and the ball went down hill following the slope. But the car got pulled uphill. I have a video of it which I will put on youtube and post a link here.
Thats a great test .. i guess you had lots of time in hand to do this... I think it works on lighter vehicles neways, waiting for your video link now

Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
Magnetic hill was done later. It works, however I did not test using rubber ball etc.,
There are lot of legends among locals, including one of how a helicopter was pulled down by the hill.
However more interesting than the hill is an offroad track originating from the signboard.
It goes straight up the hill and gets steeper and steeper. We tried going up that track until the wheels started spinning.
well do you have any idea of what incline your safari can do ? it should be able to do inclines of 40deg i guess... so the steep incline was more than that ??

Oh man .. reading all this i feel like packing my bags and getting my palio to leh !!
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Old 16th September 2009, 14:53   #94
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Well Done Tanveer,

Great trip and wonderful account with awesome photographs.

Keep them coming.

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Old 16th September 2009, 15:43   #95
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Default Nubra Ahoy...

After K.Top it was time to descend
Thanks to the rain and mist, the scenery was bleak, not very condusive to photography
A couple of the bleak show pics
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Thankfully after North Pullu, the permit point both roads and weather improved. We took tea and a short 10 minute break at that point. Nubra was not very far, and we were told that road to panamik is good
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Ladakh is a cold desert, and more desert than deserts. The reason is that while clumps of grass and kikker may survive the sand in the plains, here nothing lives. The rocks are lifeless, and do not hold water or nutrition.
therefore whatever grows, grows along the rivers. So all villages are mostly settled around rivers, appearing as OASIS in the bleak landscape.
We passed many such villages on the way
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Another pic
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Thanks to the good road, my back remained mostly fine. Just little stiffness today
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But as I mentioned earlier, the addiction of shortcuts is a bad thing, and I found another one, which bypassed quite a bit of the distance! The best thing, it was easy peasy thanks to downhill
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The Bleak scenery around
That snow cap is probably K.Top hills
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Love Thy neighbour, but not while driving.. said the signboard.
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Thanks to the good roads we crossed Khalsar quickly, and it was around quarter past 12 that we were on the road to Panamik.

Destination one - The Panamik Hot springs. Everybody had warned us not to go there, but where there is a road, there is a will

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Old 16th September 2009, 16:24   #96
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Default Panamik...

Nubra valley is like an oasis in the desert
A huge hill bifurcates the valley into two parts. While coming from Khalsar, to the left is Diskit, and to the right of the hill is Panamik

On the way to panamik lie many villages, the most notable being Sumur. The whole road is very scenic, and most importantly, barring a couple of bad kms in total, its a pleasure to drive
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A pic of the excellent Tarmac. Don't get fooled though, unlike the Leh Nimmu road, this is no runway. there are enough bumps and hidden troughs which can launch you to kingdom come.

The road pic
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Green pastures.. It was getting cloudy again, and a slight drizzle started
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This is the hill on the other side of which lie the sand dunes
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Local transport
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More pics of the road
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It was not all like this. Some bad river crossing type section lasted a few hundred meters at a stretch. However there was no water, only round stones.
Maybe if it keeps raining for a few days, things may change?

We passed the springs without noticing them, and turned back from 1km ahead. At that time we did not know of Panamik lake, or would have gone there too,
Anyways, the springs are so nondescript that it takes effort to find them.
There are no sign boards, and only indication is the smell of sulfur and the hot water.

Quite a disappointment I must say, bigger than we were warned about!
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But the drive was worth it. What views!
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Thats doordarshan tower broadcasting yesterdays news
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Meanwhile the clouds have decided to make Nubra their home
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Sun, dust storm and rain, all together
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We spent probably 30 minutes or less in Panamik, as the hunder dunes were waiting.
It took us less than 1 and a half hour to reach deskit due to the excellent roads, which went bad only in a few places

Did not take many pics till diskit, and headed straight to the hotel Stan-Del

Dunes on the way to Diskit
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More dunes
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The hotel was under construction, and our wing was ready.
We saw the room, and jaws dropped. Excellent spacious clean room, huge bathroom, running hot water, and Airtel Digital TV.
This looked like a five star room, not some 500rs one. No wonder normal tariff is 1200rs.

However there was not much time to enjoy the rooms and we wanted to be on our way to Hunder.
Hunder is 6-7kms along the main road from Deskit, and there is an offroad shortcut too(which we came back from).

While going we missed the dune turnout, and landed on a bridge, which had a big yellow board
"No tourists allowed beyond this point".
Unlike No entry points which are more suggestions to us Indians, there were machine gun nests and 10 heavily armed army men to remove any doubts about whats a suggestion and whats an order.

After getting directions, we turned back, and headed towards the dunes.

Now it was time for Jaw dropping... Nubra was turning out to be even better than expected.
............ CONT

Last edited by tsk1979 : 16th September 2009 at 16:28.
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Old 16th September 2009, 16:47   #97
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I hate this travelogue!!!

I have just spent the past hour and a half going through the photos and the narration when I should have been finishing the work that has piled up on my desk! Now I will have a backlog and my clients will be mad at me all because of you and your darn travelogue!

I hate your travelogue and I hate you TSK!!! I hate you so much and I hope....... may you keep wandering in lonely hard to reach mystical places where few people go!

Jokes Apart......excellent travelogue dude!!!

Last edited by Wolfheart : 16th September 2009 at 16:51.
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Old 16th September 2009, 17:45   #98
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Thanks wolfheart, comments like yours motivate me to keep posting.
BTW this travelogue is around 1/10th done.
Miles to go before I sleep
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Old 16th September 2009, 17:53   #99
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Default Chasing Rainbows and leprechauns

It was raining and sun was shining.
That meant a rainbow. Infact a rainbow so spectacular, that it looked unreal.
Camels could wait, it was time to chase the rainbow.
Camera was getting wet, so apologize for the drop mark in some shots.

What a sight
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Sun is shining, yet its raining
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More rainbow
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To be honest, the camera does not do justice to the scene. In reality it was much more awesome. A truly jaw dropping moment.

Now we knew why people say, whatever you do, do not miss Hunder.

To find our pot of gold, it was time to head on the dirt track.
Most taxis had stopped at the river and people were walking towards the camels.
River crossing carried a 500rs fine, and only local camel riders were allowed to take their vehicles across, so camel riding area was accessible by foot only .

However this offroad track was allowed. A gypsy drive told us it goes all the way to hunder, but road is 4x4 in places.
Soon we had to cross a dune in 4x4, and it was real fun. Reminded us of the Jaisalmer trip
Our rainbow
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Couple of pics of the steed, all shiny!
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Sun was playing hide and seek, and the rainbow kept changing
Our pot of gold was right here
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Look at the view
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One of my fav shots from the trip
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In this photography, to the left is heavy rain, yet to the right sun shines
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Old 16th September 2009, 18:30   #100
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That's mind bogglingly beautiful man. I was so happy seeing what's below, I am sure I'd have been jumping with ecstasy with views like those.

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A drive through Nubra should definitely on the cards while visiting Ladakh. I still don't know why many people tend to avoid it.

Last edited by lordofgondor : 16th September 2009 at 18:32.
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Old 16th September 2009, 19:49   #101
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Oh oh... what a rainbow! Fantastic!
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Old 16th September 2009, 20:09   #102
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Seeing all this pictures with good narration feeling like to do the trip again.

Last edited by Sha : 16th September 2009 at 20:10.
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Old 16th September 2009, 21:16   #103
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What pictures Tanveer !! Superb travelogue ! Great narration.

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Old 16th September 2009, 21:20   #104
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I am keeping my comments on travelogue reserved.....barely. Lovely photography. No wonder your back keeps packing up..Stop. Out. Click. In. Sit. Go.Stop.....
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Old 16th September 2009, 21:29   #105
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Great captures of the rainbows
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