- LEH- PANGONG TSO ROUTE
- CHANG LA PASS
- PANGONG TSO
- LEH-NUBRA VALLEY ROUTE
- NUBRA VALLEY
The Chang La pass at (17583 as per picture) / 5425m is the third highest in Ladakh and is around 88 kms from Leh.
Pangong Tso is one of the largest brackish lakes in Asia. The first glimpse of Pangong Tso is of the serene, bright blue waters and rocky lake shore and this remains etched in the memory of tourists. .Pangong Tso (which means a Long, Narrow, enchanted lake) is a salt water lake at 14,500ft / 4420m and flanked by gigantic peaks over 19700ft. It is 134kms long and approximately 1/3rd lies in India. The lake is 5 km wide at its broadest point. During winter the lake freezes completely, despite being saline water. There are no fish or other aquatic life in the lake though one can see a lot of Gulls and ducks like Bar-headed goose, Brahmini ducks over and on the lake’s surface. The lake serves as an important breeding ground for a variety of birds including migratory birds. A number of species of wildlife like the kiang, Marmot can also be seen here. There are some species of scrub and perennial herbs that grow in the marshes around the lake. Depending on the weather, you could find the lake resembling a crystal clear sheet of glass, perfectly reflecting the surrounding peaks. The lake displays multiple colours ranging from shades of blue, green and even sometimes appearing reddish. No matter which mood you find it in, it never fails to capture the imagination
This region comprises the valley of the Nubra and Shyok rivers, both below and above heir confluence. The 2 rivers meander lazily in this broad and fertile valley, flowing northwest to join the Indus in Baltistan.
The altitude of this valley is a little less than that of Leh, between 10,000ft/3050m at Hunder and 10,600ft/3230m at Panamik. The summer temperatures range between15-28degree
Nubra means green and this lovely fertile valley was originally part of the trade route between Tibet and Turkistan.
This picturesque region dotted with small hamlets, is only 130kms from Leh
The impressive Khardong La pass is approximately 35kms away and the road surface is reasonably good , except for small sections on either end near the pass and the flat valley section starting at Khalsar.
A completely contrasting vista awaits you as you descend from the snowy heights; the landscape is covered with Desert Sand. Just ahead of Khalsar , there is a bifurcation into the twin valleys of the Shyok and Nubra rivers.
A 3 km ride across the bridge takes you along an impressively wide river bed, to Diskit.
Located above the Shyok river this village boasts the largest and the most ancient Gompa in the Nubra Valley. It is around 350 years old and houses around 70 monks.
Just 7km beyond the Diskit lies the village of Hunder and it is on this section that you come across sand dunes and thorny scrubs akin to the Sahara desert. You can spot the double humped Bactarian camel here- they were probably abandoned here centuries ago by passing Caravans and have since flourished in this terrain. Tourists can organize to take ride on these camels.
Just ahead of Hunder is the last point of civilian traffic- the road beyond leads to the army base for the Siachen Glacier.
A remote village of about 4,000 residents, inhabited by ethnic Muslims, a few kilometres from the ‘line of control’ (the de facto border) between India and Pakistan, on the Indian side. Until 1971 a part of Baltistan, shared strong economic and cultural ties with Tibet. The residents speak Baltistani, and some Ladakhi and English.
The area of the Shayok river past Hundar, including the three villages of Changmar, Bogdan and Turtuk, were only opened to foreign tourists in 2010, so they are still quite new in their contact with tourists and the West, and feel rather unexplored. Turtuk is unique for various reasons. While the whole of Ladakh is essentially a Buddhist dominated area, Turtuk follows Islam as its primary religion.