Day 12: Leh – Upshi – Tanglang La – More Plains – Pang – Sarchu

Posted: July 8, 2007 in Rides_n_Travel

With heavy hearts we bid good bye to Leh with a promise to come back again. We started early in the morning around 6 AM. Road from Leh to Upshi was in good condition and we did good speeds at this stretch. Took a halt in Upshi for breakfast and started towards Tanglang La. Tanglang La is at 17,582 ft and is the third highest pass. Road to Tanglang La was in decent condition or may be looked decent to us after doing Khardung La. As expected we got some spectacular views at Tanglang La. We clicked some pics and moved ahead. From Tanglang La the landscape started changing and we were able to spot some rocky mountains along with barren, arid mounts.

After descending from Tanglang La we found ourselves riding on a long plane stretch. We were riding on famous More Planes. There is a 40 kms long plane road on this long plateau and it is hard to believe that you are riding on a relatively straight road at an altitude of 15,400 ft. Road was mostly in good condition but was bumpy. Few stretches were filled with sand and riding there needed a lot of maneuvering. At the end of More Planes we were bit surprised to see a steep descend towards Pang. That is when we realized that we were riding on some real high altitude. We reached Pang around 12.30 and stopped there for lunch.

One surprising observation was that on this Leh – Manali stretch there were no pakka houses / stalls from Upshi to Jispa. You can just find few tents other than army transit camps in all other places enroute.

Pang was no exception. We had a quick lunch at one of the tents in Pang and started forward towards Lachu Lung La (16616 ft). By the time we crossed Lachlung La all of us started to feel a mild headache, which we ignored and kept moving.. It was hard to believe that it to be the symptom of Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS) as after doing Leh and excursions we thought that we were fairly acclimatized. Later we realized that it was due to riding continuously at high altitude of 14000+ ft for more than 6 hours. And we were certainly not acclimatized to that.

We kept on moving in hope of touching low altitude asap. We crossed Nakee La (15547 ft) to ride on the famous Gata Loops which is a stretch of 21 hair pin bends. Gata loop finally took us down to some comfortable altitude. By this time Jatin was suffering from a severe headache. Myself and Prasoon were in relatively better condition. We did our final stretch of the day to reach Sarchu by 4.30 PM and were happy to reach atleast one destination quite in time. We called it the day and took a halt in cold and windy Sarchu. Jatin was not well and was having severe headache and nausea. We checked with Army Doctor and he recommended him to sleep early. He assured that the next day morning everything would be all right and it happens usually in that area because of low oxygen levels.

Total distance covered: 264 kms

  1. jsr says:

    headaches are common on the first ride to Leh! don’t worry next time It will be much fun.The retrospection of this first Leh ride is a life time memory 🙂

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