Travel responsibly. Take nothing but pictures. Conserve.
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Pangong Lake or Pangong Tso (Tso:Ladakhi for lake) is a high altitude brackish/salt water lake situated in the himalaya at a height of about 4,350 m (13,900 ft). A third of the lake lies in India while two thirds of the the lake lies in China. The lake is supposedly 5 km wide at its broadest point.
Pangong Tso is about five hours drive from Leh, most of it through spectacular valleys. The road also traverses the third-highest pass in the world, the Changla pass, where army sentries and a small teahouse greet visitors. The Tea is FREE.
A special permit is required to visit the lake.
The route takes us south east from Leh beyond shey and Thicksey. We take a left at karoo where the the ascent begins to Chang La pass
Approaching Chang La pass, 5270 m./17,300 ft
After some very slow and careful driving up the pass we reach the high point at 17800 feet.
This pass is named after a sadhu or a holy man called Chang La Baba. A shrine in his honour.
I decide to explore a bit while Rigzen gets out for free tea and a chat with the Army guys. Dont expect restaurant here. The tea house is a little tent with a boiling pot of tea right at the center and chairs around it. Everything is so quiet, white and frozen around here.
That must be the Himalayan high mountain puppy
This Gypsy is coming up the pass from the other side. We will be meeting them soon
and here they are
Police check post
Army tow trucks
After having descended from Chang La Pass, It has gotten a little dry with the lower altitude. A little lake in the distance. No, that is not Pangong Lake
Stupa is actually Sanskrit for "pile" as in a heap that gradually accumulates when each visitor leaves a small stone as a momento.
Buddhists believe in the idea that by hanging prayer flags in high places such as from the top of stupas and across mountain paths, the wind will carry the blessings depicted on the flags to all beings.
The BRO (Border Roads Organization) keeps you entertained throughout with their funny and yet meaningful road signs.
Another one of those road signs.
Here is a little list of Funny Road Signs Quotes that we noticed:
1. Check your nerves, on my curves
2. Be gentle on my curves
3. If married, divorce speed
4. Drive carefully, Live cheerfully
5. Love your neighbor, but not while driving.
6. If you sleep, your family will weep.
7. Drive on muscle power, not rum power.
8. After whiskey, driving is risky.
9. No race, no rally, enjoy he beauty of the valley;
10. Drive like hell, and you will be there!
11. Dont be a gama in the land of the Lama
12. Beware, I am curvacious.
13. Better to be Mr Late than Late Mr
14. Drive, dont Fly
15. Lower your Gear, Curve is Near
16. This is a highway, not a runway
17. Fast wont Last
18. Alert Today Alive Tomorrow
We postponed our trip to Pangong Tso by a few days when we heard news that a flash flood had washed away a bridge. Work is still in progress here but they managed to clear a path for the vehicles to pass through.
A lone worker walks along the dusty road
Road construction activity. What we noticed is that its mostly the women who do the hard work of lifting rocks and digging dirt.
Another broken bridge.
The flood filled the river valley with billions of boulders from the mountains above.
First view of Pangong Lake.
The tea house by the lake
Just one old man in the middle of nowhere making tea and Maggi noodles for visitors
Pangong Lake or Pangong Tso
Further up this path or along the lake is the Indo China Border
A third of the lake lies in India while two thirds of the the lake lies in China
Its bitterly cold and arrid
There is only Tea and Maggi for Lunch