The Dream Ride! Being a pillion through the mighty Ladakh on Duke 390.

Vrushali Surve

Happy pillion for life!
(Yes! As unbelievable as it may seem, I am back with the rest of the chapters!)

Chapter 6: Leh Jaaenge, Leh jaaenge, Duke waale aaj finally Leh jaaenge!
(Day 5, July 11, 2018)
Part II: KhaltseNimmu–Sangam–Magnetic Hill

So, after having our brunch in Lamayuru, we headed to see the edge of River Indus' water in Nurla, Khaltse (also known as Khaltsi or Khalsi), located 337 km away from Srinagar on the old main road to Leh. The village crosses Indus over an iron bridge and is located 337 km away from Srinagar on the old main road to Leh. We rode passed River Indus' edge, just watching it while riding, without actually stopping, and directly stopped to see the confluence ahead. On the way, I, the pillion, did click a few photographs and shoot some videos, but besides merely doing this, today, I was assigned an additional duty—attentively spotting the cute yellow NH1 signboard and asking Rohan to stop as soon as I spot it! (He was desperately looking for the yellow NH1 sign board and must have told me me to be alert about spotting one at least 2 times every minute. :p)

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Probably the first shrine I spotted en route!

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Finally, the long awaited sign board was also spotted: standing along the bank of River Indus.

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Photo toh banta hai!!!

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Nearing the destination...

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The iron bridge across Indus.

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It is better to travel well than to arrive, so has said the Buddha himself.

About 48.5 km ahead from Nurla is Nimmoo (or Nimmu) where the breathtaking sangam (confluence) of rivers Indus and Zanskar can be witnessed. This is where we stopped for a while.As I had said earlier, the merger of the two magnificent rivers is just mesmerizing!

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Needless to say, the confluence!

Honestly speaking, our intention was to reach Leh as soon as possible so that we could do the first circuit on the same evening. Nevertheless, we did stop at the next site on the route: Gurudwara Pathar Sahib. This Gurudwara was built in commemoration of the visit of Gurunanak ji in Ladakh, in 1517. As some enthusiasts might know, an extremely interesting historical tale is associated with Gurudwara Pathar Sahib. The tale goes like this: A demon used to torture and eat locals. When he got to know about Guru Nanak ji's miracles and visit, he planned to kill Guru Nanak ji. To achieve his goal, on one night, the demon threw a huge boulder toward Guru Nank ji while he was meditating with his back faced at the hill where the demon was dwelling. On seeing the firm posture of Guru Nanak ji and believeing that he's killed, the demon came where Guru Nanak ji was sitting; however, to his surprise, Guru ji was breathing! He was still and lost in his meditation. The boulder had turned into warm wax on touching Guru Nanak ji's body. In a fit of anger on knowing this, the demon pushed the boulder ahead, but because it was still warm, the boulder got a footprint of the demon himself in addition to the imprint of Guru Nanak ji's body. This left the demon startled and made him immediately surrender to Guru ji. Historical records have it that Ladakhis worship Guru Nanak Sahib and fondly call him Guru Gompka Maharaj.

We did stop at the Gurudwara, but only Ginesh and Rahul went inside. Rohan and I waited outside, soaking in the purity in the air and watching the army convoys around, in awe. Actually, we hadn't bathed that morning, so we refrained from going inside.


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From there, we headed forward for the Magnetic Hill, the Cyclops hill located approximately 25–30 km (26.7 km, to be specific, according to GMaps) away from Leh. As the yellow signboard reads, the layout of the surrounding sloping terrain creates the appearance of a hill. The board also has instructions telling riders or drivers to park their vehicles in the box marked with a white point on the road, which is known as the Magnetic road. We tried it with the Thar but couldn't really feel or see any magnetism; this might be a result of the crowded surrounding, but we aren't sure. Nonetheless, it won't harm to wait for a while and try out the defiance against gravity amidst the Magnetic Hill!

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Tourism!

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Trying out the magnetic effect.

Our anticipation was increasing more and more, as we were finally going to reach LEH!!!

(Part III...)
 
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Vrushali Surve

Happy pillion for life!
Chapter 6: Leh jaaenge, Leh jaaenge, Duke waale aaj finally Leh jaaenge!
(Day 5, July 11, 2018)
Part IV: Magnetic Hill–Leh

In about 30–45 minutes, we entered the new Leh city. Our stay for the next two nights was booked at Lings Guest House (also know as Ling's Villa Lings Villa, Leh, India) through HvK (HiVayKing) Club (Tariff: Rs. 1500/- per room, per day; EP).

Reaching the guest house is quite easy. While coming from Kargil, you cross the Hall of Fame and reach a circle, as you see the boundary of Leh Airport. Take a left turn at the circle, off the main highway, and keep moving ahead toward the Leh Army Hospital. After crossing the hospital, continue straight alongside the Shanti Stupa Hill and from the entrance/steps of the Shanti Stupa (base), take a right into the Changspa market, where you will then turn left and continue straight right till the road's end, where the Lings Guest House is located. Remember that there are other similar named guest houses and/or home-stays that can definitely confuse visitors. Therefore, we strongly recommend taking assistance from HvK RoutO.

Mr. Dorjay, owner of Ling's Guesthouse/Villa, is an amazing host (he plays flute, is absolutely soft spoken and intelligent, and has an adorable family :-D ). He is also quite well known in Leh and does everything under his control to get all the further permits that his guests require. All we need to do is give him our Aadhaar cards (original as well as photocopies), and he takes the utmost care of the rest; that's all!

We reached the guest house at around 4:15 PM; the location is ultimate, surrounded by Cedar Deodar and pine trees. The first thing that we did after checking in was asking for some hot chai and Maggie!


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Ling's Guest House (aka Ling's Villa)

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Our first Maggie in Ladakh!!!

(Leh Circuit 1 following up next...)
 
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Great pics and writing..... waiting for the rest of it. Our group has already got the Chalo Ladakh package and considering the number of days we have and the situation in the Kashmir valley we are planning to do the Manali-Leh-Manali circuit.
 

Vrushali Surve

Happy pillion for life!
Great pics and writing..... waiting for the rest of it. Our group has already got the Chalo Ladakh package and considering the number of days we have and the situation in the Kashmir valley we are planning to do the Manali-Leh-Manali circuit.
Alright. My husband, Rohan, and his friends had done the same route in 2016 because of the Burhan Wani issue: Amritsar - Dalhousie - Killar - Keylong - Leh. You can refer to their log here: NHT Himalayan Odyssey : Mum-Leh-Mum Journey of a Lifetime!
I'll be uploading our Leh-Manali route soon. And HvK's Chalo Ladakh package is super. Rest assured you're trip is going to be amazing! The team guides through everything in any situation.
 
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Alright. My husband, Rohan, and his friends had done the same route in 2016 because of the Burhan Wani issue: Amritsar - Dalhousie - Killar - Keylong - Leh. You can refer to their log here: NHT Himalayan Odyssey : Mum-Leh-Mum Journey of a Lifetime!
I'll be uploading our Leh-Manali route soon. And HvK's Chalo Ladakh package is super. Rest assured you're trip is going to be amazing! The team guides through everything in any situation.
Hey,

I am also planning to send my bike through VRL's cage services, need some info for the same:

1. Will they deliver it in cage to an address or will they keep it in their warehouse?
2. Do they charge any holding charges if we send in early keeping a couple of days of margin and we reach late by a couple of days?
3. Where did you get the bike packed before putting in the crate?
4. Can we send saddle bags along with it?

Regards,
Kinshuk
 

Vrushali Surve

Happy pillion for life!
Hey,

I am also planning to send my bike through VRL's cage services, need some info for the same:

1. Will they deliver it in cage to an address or will they keep it in their warehouse?
2. Do they charge any holding charges if we send in early keeping a couple of days of margin and we reach late by a couple of days?
3. Where did you get the bike packed before putting in the crate?
4. Can we send saddle bags along with it?

Regards,
Kinshuk
Hey,

1. They keep it caged in their warehouse as we pack and send it from here.
2. No, the charges are included in their total fees only. Our bike had also reached a few days before we reached.
3. We had got it packed in their warehouse here itself. I'll check with the packing charges with Rohan and get back to you.
4. Yes, we can. We had done the same. Had packed some clothes and some more stuff that we were not gonna need till we got the bike. They pack the bike with the saddle bags tied on.
 
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