Check this thread :Just finished my Nepal solo trip. If administrators could help me in suggesting a software to reduce the size of the pictures without compromising the quality of the pictures, I would like to present a travelogue. Satinderji, I sent you pm already.
It was suggested before when I wrote this tavelogue but skipped out of my memory.
Thank you Satinderji. I have managed to resize them. I am not a great photographer myself, yet, to upload whatever little i have, its just a hassle if not resized.
what was ur top speed in khardungla-i m just being curious-u must had full throttle of platinaDay 12 : Khalste - Leh 4th Oct 2013, Friday:
Last night, as the Dak bungalow was after the Khalste, no shop or hotel here. Just ate the apple in my bag and then my Chikki from home. This food item really helped me a lot during emergencies.
As usual got up early in the morning, geyser on, bath. Waiting for the sun to come up. No tea. Next to the bungalow, some workers working on the bridge were staying. These were from Bihar. They had their own make shift kitchen. I asked them if I can have a cup of tea. They kindly offered and even Chapathi. I just had a cup of tea thanked them. By this time the sun was up. Waited for a while for the watchman. No trace of him. Started off at 8:20.
10:05 Saspol Odo 56404. A sleepy village. Somehow I liked this village so much. Something like Ladakhi version of Malgudi of R.K. Narayan. I preferred places like these to Leh, Srinagar or even Delhi.
View attachment 447969
Looks like a bus shelter, a prayer wheel inside. Don’t know which bus comes here. Never seen a single bus all along. Get ready for office, spin the wheel of prayer, wait for a mysterious bus to come. What a cool life and lucky people here. I know, the saying, the grass is always greener the other side.
Soon, I am at the confluence of Zanskar and Indus rivers.
View attachment 447970
The heart of Himalayas, sangam of two rivers. This small river as it looks here, caused the wipeout of entire civilization once; Indus Valley civilization, about five thousand year ago! What secrets this harmless looking river could be holding.
The barren topography of Ladakh:
View attachment 447971
Soon reached magnetic hill. No need to stop there, still I stopped my bike with neutral and obviously the bike was moving back. No doubt where else it would move, very clear to the naked eye that there is a slope. A car was parked there, obviously a tourist came to see this from Leh!. Poor fellow. Anyway he comes to me starts talking in Tamil, obviously seeming my TN registration. I can manage with Tamil. He also confirms its all fooling. I read much in the travelogues, much discussion , scientific, data, GPS reading and what not which ran for pages together. Any fifth standard boy would be able to tell that the land slopes there. I did not even get off the bike. To my right, I can see tracks going up the hill a bit obviously made by some people who rode there curious about magnetism.
I want to hit Leh as soon as possible before DC office closes for Lunch. So, I hurry.
I silently pay my respects to Gurudwara Pathar Sahib. And continue further. At 11:00 I cross Nimmu Odo:5640. A tea break.
Finally Leh in single digit km distance away, near Hall of Fame which I decided would come back tomorrow
View attachment 447972
By 12:30 at DC office, Leh. There is a board in front of the office saying Khardungla visit is not allowed between 10 am and 3 pm because of some road widening work and inconvenience is regretted. So, I just have time to find a place to say, leave my baggage and proceed to Khardungla.
Straight went inside for my permit. Got it done in about quarter an hour or so. Paid Rs.240 and enquired about stay options. Everyone was pointing to Changspa road which leads to Shanti Stupa. The winter had set in and many hotels and guest houses are on the verge of closing and some have already closed for the season.
With some hunt for about an hour or so, I find a room in a guest house with attached bath for Rs.200. At first the lady said, everything is closed for the season but when she saw me all alone, she accepted me in. Just untied the baggage, left it in the room and checked the sky. Its clear, little cloud formation over Khardungla. No food right from the morning and last night apple and chikki. Decided to straight head for Khardungla. Food can wait. They said last day it snowed at Khardungla. We can not predict weather. So I pushed. Some said not to go as it is already late. It was 3pm by then.
I continue with little cloud formation over Khardungla pass. Till south pullu the road is ok. They take my permit paper there and I ask one military man who was checking how far is Khardungla top. He shows me a tower at the far end over the mountains and says there! Had a quick tea since already threatening long shadows are casting indicating the fast approach of evening. No one on the roads. Literally alone on the road. At tea shop I can see snow here and there from last night and the winding road in the snow up there.
View attachment 447973
Before it is dark I must come back as far as possible. With this in mind, I started. Again the bad road from here onwards till top about 15 Kms to go to top. How much my fears urge me to turn back as it was almost getting dark. In conditions like this, the worst enemy is our own fears. I paid a deaf ear to those urges and continued. Soon I was passing through the snow covered area
View attachment 447974
Once in the snow, I remember the picture that my principal had asked me to take, luckily one car was coming down and more lucky is that it stopped. I asked the occupant to take a snap of mine.
View attachment 447975
The snow was powdery, dry. This photographer was much better for he had taken good pictures than myself. He asked me to go bit further into snow and like a fool I obeyed, digging my feet into powdery snow and he took this picture:
View attachment 447976
I thanked him and hurried up. I said I was fool to go into snow, because, the powdery snow had entered into my shoe which in my hurry to reach the top I forgot to dust it off before started my climb. Soon, this powder, with the body warmth melted and wet my shoe and socks. With the sun disappearing behind the mountains, the chill weather, wet shoes and even those gloves offered not much protection. I could feel the pain in my finger tips and toes. No option, I must continue for I am committed now. Having reached all the way here, return? No.
The climb was slow, very very cold. I was thinking of Shackleton coming back from the South Pole just 90 miles short. Plus, our BCMTian Prabhaker, if you had read his blog on EBC, returning just a few mins walk from EBC in the similar conditions and his Raj and other friends stuck till midnight endangering themselves and the rescue party. All this was going on in my mind. Am I doing something sensible? I don’t know how others felt who were alone, first time, in those conditions, but that was what I was thinking on the climb.
The thoughts anyway, kept me busy while bike rode on well. The only problem was with me, not with the bike. The last kilometer or two the roads really turned worse because of the road widening programme. The climb seemed never ending like Zojilla. But it did and I reach the Khardungla top. Time:5:20 pm and odo: 56511
View attachment 447977what was top speed of platina on khardungla.when i went there i took a rented discover one fifty cc and on high roads of khardungla with full throttle it was not going beyond forty kimi per hour-courious to know about platina
There was not even a single soul there. I can see some tea shops, and other shops but everything was tightly shut. I know at that altitude I must not spend much time.
You can see the approaching darkness. The snow was not so bright, as I told you the light sensors ion the camera were too sensitive I think. Same happened when I crossed Zojilla.
Luckily from nowhere one guy appears, looked like a BRO worker and I request him to click me.
View attachment 447978
I was in no mood to go bit further back into the light or remove my gloves or helmet. I thanked the guy and asked him what he was doing there at that hour when everything was closed. He said he was waiting for some transportation. At that hour? Well, a truck did come. Obviously he was sitting at some little shelter out of sight of me and saw this truck approaching and he came out. Lucky I was. But the the truck left. I too left the place and started down hill. I was pushing the limits of the vehicle a bit further I know; because it was turning dark fast.
The cold was too much, I never experienced a snow bite, could this pain be the indication of a snow bite? So much pain on my forefinger tips. No option, I must continue. Somehow reached Southpullu and it was pitch dark. I did not stop there to check if someone was there. I carryon with heald light on. Road was good but I could not go fast because of extremely cold climate. Whatever I cover and helmet, still that chill wind, rattling my teeth, but as Leh is nearing it was ok. I track my way back to my guest house. Phew, what a trip that was to Khardungla top!
I park the bike inside and go out to have something to eat. The time may be around 8 or so but nothing seems to be open excepting some travel and antique shops in the market. May be there are restaurants, but I did not have enough energy. Finally I find a small sweet shop. Last stock of two samosas available. I eat that and some sweet. That was ok, . Came back, logged the entry and retired to bed. Curiously, not that tired after all after the food in my tummy. Mind still active. But having nothing else to do, slipped into sleep.
Tomorrow I must do something about this chill wind entering into helmet, plus the sunburn on my hands. Lets see. Tomorrow is yet another day. I know, Leh – Manali road, is not fun. I must check tomorrow if the traffic is coming down from Manali side. Plus bike mechanic Sharma just to do general check. Well, all that tomorrow. Did not call home because, it is difficult to find STD shop. Before I started from home, I already told them the phone situation while in J & K. Anyway, for now, I slipped into sleep unaware of what was to follow the early next day morning.
Odo reading: 56553
Run for the day: 165 Kms
Run for the trip: 3,333 Kms