Month: Sep 2009

Zanskar, the last outpost of Ladakh

[caption id="attachment_288" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Our first view of Nun, one of the 7000m giants of the Kashmiri Himalayas"][/caption] Zanskar valley, one of the more isolated and remote areas of Ladakh that has retained much of the Ladakhi (Zanskari) tradition. We cycled amoungst the giants of the Indian Himalayas - Nun and Kun (over 7000m) and alongside the snouts of giant glaciers. Stunning vibrant crimson and yellow high altitude sedges lined…

Pangong Tso (Lake) and along the Indus

  [caption id="attachment_274" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Now heres a real Munchkin. Marmots are amazing little fellows choosing to live only above 4000m. They delighted me whenever the roads got high. I thought of names for them: Milo, Molly, Marmelade and Marmite. A good start, so I thought."][/caption] The amazing salt water Pang gong Tso (lake) is around 20km long and 4km wide and is shared at by India and Tibet at…

Leh2009, Adventure, Cycle Touring, Holidays, India, Indian Himalayas, Travel

[caption id="attachment_339" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Lonely Leh Gompa"][/caption] Imposingly the Leh Palace is built on a crag overlooking the town, above it a little gompa (monastry) is perched, almost lonely against the vast blu, cloud-puffed sky. Below the old city, densely built, slowy crumbles and decays. The main bazaar is a bustle of old Ladakhi ladies selling their fabulous apricots and vegetable grown in their home gardens, chatting and knitting with…

The Great Manali-Leh Highway

After an extraordinary  2 weeks that took us out of the incredible Spiti Valley to rejoin the main route to Ladakh, the Manali Leh highway. We have crossed passes over 5300m, slept in roadside dhabbas (truck-stop tents), missed a shower for 8 days, sucked on oxygen thin air, camped alongside shimmering high altitude turquoise lakes, eaten ravenously, delighted in seeing 'blue sheep' (bharal) springing effortlessly from rock to rock in…

Lovely Lahaul – Leaving Spiti

From Spiti we crossed our first high pass, the Kunzum-la (4600m) and enjoyed the change from high altitude desert to cascading waterfalls, grassy slopes and snow peaks in the distance. The wild Chandra river and precipitous drop-offs kept us on guard all the way to the junction of the Manali-Leh highway. [caption id="attachment_178" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Lahualian summer flowers below the Rohtang pass."][/caption] [caption id="attachment_176" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="It rained all night,…