Ladakh trip Day 10 & Day 11 – 19th & 20th July – (Nubra Valley / Khardungla Pass / Hunder)

Today we were supposed to leave for Nubra Valley early in the morning. But we are told that there has been some sort of traffic jam near the Valley and it would be better if we could leave by noon. We use the morning time for shopping in the Leh market. The interesting part in towns like Leh is that there will not be more than two ATMs in these places. And out of the two only one might be in a working condition. Needless to say, even in the mornings one can find an unusually long queue in the ATM.

By afternoon we head towards Nubra. The drive towards Nubra is really picturesque with perfect setting of mountains, green grass, streams and animals grazing lazily. Nubra means green and this fertile valley was actually a trade route between Tibet and Turkistan. The highlight of the day was Khardungla Pass – the world’s highest motorable road – located at 18380 ft (5600 m). Again we are enveloped by a false sense of achievement. We remind ourselves that we haven’t “achieved” anything but we are indeed lucky to indulge in these experiences. The view from Khardungla is amazing as one can see the peaks of the Zanskar range across the Indus Valley. It’s a mesmerising experience. As we descend from the snowy peaks of Khardungla, we enter the lush green valleys of Nubra. We spend the night at a camp site called Organic Camps. I must confess that it was a really wise decision to chose this site as it survives on organic foods grown by the staff in and around the camp site. Something very novel and new. Needless to say, the food tasted really good.

The next day we reached the sand dunes of Hunder. Just yesterday we held snow in our hands and today we couldn’t believe our eyes when we saw the sand dunes and the thorny plants in Hunder. The highlight of the day was the ride on the double humped Bactrian camels found only here in India! We click a lot of photographs of these camels and take a memorable ride on them. We mingle with the camel caretakers and they tell us that these double humped Bactrian camels were abandoned here centuries ago by traders and caravans.

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~ by rb on July 26, 2010.

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