Epic Road Trip to Leh Ladakh – 3 August to 13 August 2019
My first solo trip ever! I booked a slot with a tour organizer suggested by a friend and got going. My journey took off like this:
Day 0: Started by bus from Delhi to Manali at 8:00 PM.
Day 1: Reached Manali at 10:00 AM; checked into the hotel. Got briefed by the team about riding and safety. Relaxed in the hotel till evening and then picked up a RE Himalayan and fueled it up. Slept early as we had to start by 4:00 AM.
Day 2: Woke up at 3:00 AM; got ready and left at 4:15 AM from Manali to reach Sarchu at 8:00 PM. We were so spellbound by the locations on our way that we covered only 250 km. However, the roads were just a prelude to what lay ahead. Stayed at a camp for the night; it was freezing.
Day 3: Started from Sarchu at 10:00 AM to Leh. The roads started getting better, but it was an uphill road ahead. It was beautiful yet daunting. We crossed the Nakeela Pass and Tanglang La (Second Highest Motorable Road) to reach Leh at 8:00 PM. After covering a distance of 250 km, we stayed overnight at a hotel.
Day 4: We explored a few local tourist spots, the local cuisine, and stayed overnight at Leh.
Day 5: Started for Pangong at 8:00 AM, crossed Chang La (Second Highest Motorable Road. Wait, didn’t I already mention Tanglang La as the second highest motorable road? Well, even our tour organiser was confused when I questioned the same). We were left in awe of nature’s creation. A distance of 180 km was covered. We reached the beautiful Pangong at 4:00 PM.
Day 6: Started from Pangong at 8:00 AM towards Nubra Valley. Reached Nubra at around 3:00 PM, covered a distance of 180 km. Checked into a hotel at Diskit; freshened up and left for Hunder – The White Sand Desert.
Day 7: Started on our journey back to Leh from Nubra at 11:00 AM due to heavy rains. This was challenging as we had to pass through Khardung La (the highest motorable pass in the World). The temperature was sub-zero, and it got even more exciting as we rode through the rain. Like the icing on the cake, it started snowing as we reached the summit. After covering 120 km, we started our descent to Leh and arrived at 6:00 PM.
Day 8: Journey back to Manali. We started from Leh at 5:00 AM towards Jispa and reached the Camp at Jispa around 7:30 PM. We halted at Jispa for the night. Distance covered 335 km.
Day 9: Started from Jispa at 8:00 AM to Manali and reached at 4:00 PM. Freshened up at a hotel and then got into the bus for Delhi. Distance covered 140 km.
It was 7 days of enthralling and courageous riding, covering around 1800 km. No images will do justice to what you see in real life. It’s an experience that every person has to witness at least once in their lifetime.