Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Day 8: Amazing ride to the Gurudongmar Lake!

Route: Thanggu - Giagong - Gurudongmar Lake - Chungtang(140 KM)
Road Condition: No tarmac at all. All gravel road between Thanggu and Gurudongmar Lake.
Max. Altitude: 17100 ft (Gurudongmar Lake)

We all got up early and after having our breakfast left for Gurudongmar at 6:30. The road was just as we expected. It was very bad with no tarmac at all but the scenery was again similar to what we had seen at Zero Point. As we started gaining altitude, the snow capped mountains came closer.
Before the lake there was an army check point where we had to show the permits. Here we met a group of army men who were planning to take up motorcycling expedition from Gurudongmar to Leh.
Last check point before Gurudongmar Lake

As we came closer to the lake, the scenery changed dramatically. We were on the Tibetan plateau now. It was a high altitude desert. The roads were all dusty here and criss crossed each other.
I just loved this photo!


Ice capped mountains n glacier lakes!

There wasn’t a road as such. It was more like tracts set by the army trucks. The weather was so crystal clear.

Any deviation from the roads would have led to China! On the way we saw mine fields as well. Snow capped mountains were surrounding us from all around.
Do what you feel like!

Himalayan Desert!

The roads up there...


You don't get to ride at such places often!

I loved it!

At 11:30, we reached the stunning Gurudongmar Lake at 17100 ft. If i were to list best moments of my life, this would probably up there!

There is Sarva Dharma Sthal here which is essentially a Gurudwara and a Tibetan worship place all together in a single place since for both Sikhs and Tibetans, this lake is sacred. Manas started to feel the symptoms of altitude sickness and decided to take rest inside the temple. Parag and me decided to take a stroll along the lake. We were also experiencing a slight headache. We had chocolates and tea offered by the army men. After some photography, we then decided to head down. We spent a good hour and a half at that place. From here we could see the last Indian army post on a hill top. The weather at Gurudongmar starts getting bad after noon.
The High Point: Gurudongmar Lake!

My bike made it without any problems.. she is such a darling!

Another shot of lake

Prayer flags at the lake


Clear Skies!

The fantastic lake!

See it for yourself

We then headed back to Thanggu and reached there at 1 pm. Manas was in a bad state now. I had a headache as well. Good we avoided drinks the other night otherwise we would have had a severe headache. We decided to lose some altitude so left Thanggu at 2 pm. As we started descending, it started raining heavily and added to this the road stretch between Thanggu and Lachen was very bad because of which we slowed down quite a bit. we reached Chungtang in the evening and were surprised to see that there was only one hotel there. The rooms were pretty bad and congested but we had no other choice. We were totally wet. After a round of old monk, we all felt very good and slept.

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