Category: 2010 Indian Himalayas Cycle Tours

Cycling with Himalayan Hounds – fundraiser for Funda Nenja, township dog-training initiative

[caption id="attachment_1730" align="aligncenter" width="540"] Funda Nenja roughly translates from isiZulu to “learning with the dog” and that about sums up what an enthusiastic group of people are doing in Mpophomeni just outside Howick. Every Friday afternoon sees a gathering of about 10 volunteers and 65 dogs with their handler -children coming together to share interspecies and multicultural communication.The idea is to develop respect and compassion for all living things by…

Favourites of Ladakh

A selection of some of my favourite memories of the this beautiful region. Due to the success and interest of this past trip we will be running another two in Aug/Sept 2011. If you are interested please email [email protected] Note that we try to run these trips as  environmentally senstively as possible i.e. no bottled water , we carry out all we take in,  leaving no trace at our campsites, respecting the…

The Khardung-la Clamber (5600m so they say!)

[caption id="attachment_830" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The fabulous views to distract on the way up the Khardung-la Pass overlookng Leh and the Zanskar range. Its a tough slog, all 40km of it rising 2km above Leh (3600m - 5600m). It took me a total of 4hrs48min to get to the top, and that was pretty good going!"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_831" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="BRO (Border Roads Organisation) once again supported us all the way…

The Capital of the Kingdom – Leh

[caption id="attachment_810" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The final kilometres of entertainment. Stok Palace can be seen as a speck in the distance."][/caption] [caption id="attachment_811" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Seems as if Shelley supports this one "][/caption] [caption id="attachment_812" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The final 5km"][/caption]   [caption id="attachment_814" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The Oriental Guesthouse where we relaxed for the following days and were so well looked after by Phuntsok and her family. Note how the beautfil garden…

A sobbering welcome to Leh

[caption id="attachment_786" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Stakna Monastry 'stacked' up on a rocky outcrop, overlooking the Indus plains. Until this point, there was no real evidence of the devastation that lay ahead except for the sinisterly swollen Indus."][/caption] [caption id="attachment_787" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The first petrol station we had seen since Keylong some 6 days behind us."][/caption] [caption id="attachment_788" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Shey village provided the first evidence that things were not as it…

Children of Shara and the Cyclists

[caption id="attachment_761" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Now only 2 days from Leh, it seemed as if the Road Sign writers had really picked up pace and where getting a little philosophical and melancholic"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_762" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Taking a break from the hot, dry and dusty conditions. While we were essentially still following the 'downstream' of the Indus, it didnt feel anything quite like it. An 84km ride we were all too…

Following the Indus

[caption id="attachment_743" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="While cycling was down the Indus, headwind and constant little ascents ensured we never got to lazy in this stunning wine coloured valley"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_744" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Ladakhi villages along the way offer a 'relieving' contrast to the beautiful stark and barren rock"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_746" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Ama-le (grandma) and her two grandchildren - I love the community element of Ladakh, everything is shared: work, food…

Along the Indus to Chumathang

[caption id="attachment_734" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The village of Chumathang - note the gompa (monastry in the background) always perched on a crag above a village, as if keeping a watchful eye . Chortens decorated with prayer flags and mani stones, a symbol of buddhism"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_735" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="One of the few bridges that weren't washed away in the floods. I found it interesting that this was one of the traditionally…

Detour to the Indus (via Tso Kar)

Due to the floods and mudslides in Ladakh, we were forced to change our route and add another 100 odd kilometres onto the trip. The route we had expected to follow would have taken us over 5300m Taglang-la pass, however once over this pass,  some 20km or so of road had been completely washed away. We diverted around Tso Kar and crossed the 5000m Polo Konga Pass instead, passing high summer grazing…