The diary of a few rides and clicks!

Friday, May 18, 2012

On 7:43 AM by Yashwanth Rao   1 comment
Day 4 (Continued) :

So, after getting fresh finally, we started our journey with a good initial pace, saying bye to Keylong, a place where we were reunited after a bit of an adventure! It was afternoon already and we knew we couldn't cover much distance that day.

The ride was smooth, fun filled and we had to cross some water streams as well. As always, we were surrounded by huge mountains all the way and the roads were bad too. We could not even cross 60 most of the times. But the initial parts of the road from Keylong was good. We had finished our lunch at Keylong. So we had to pass Baralacha La within sunset and reach Sarchu, to stay during the night.

After a pretty long ride, where we stopped in between just to drink water and eat something, we reached Zing Zing Bar. Well, it wasn't a bar as the name says and it was just a place where some army troops were stationed. An ascent started from there and all of a sudden there was a chill in the air. It was nearing sunset already. We just stopped for a minute to enjoy the sudden chill in the air and decided to reach Baralacha La as soon as possible and reaching Sarchu by nightfall was our plan. We were around 60-70 kms from Sarchu still. 

In another 15-30 minutes, we had to stop in front of a giant stream and it was really huge! It was very deep as well, and the fact that it was due to the melting of ice caps made it almost impossible to cross it by ourselves. Thankfully, some 5-6 people were there whose job was to push the bike by themselves across the stream and they charged 100 Rs per bike. Seemed legit since 5 of them had to share it again. They pushed it across the stream easily and without bikes also it was so tough for us to make it across the stream since the water was literally ice cold. It was the coldest stream we ever came across. We took another 10-15 minutes there to get dried up a bit and we were realizing that we were at very higher altitudes now, since breathing wasn't easy and we would get tired so soon, due to lack of oxygen.

After another half an hour or so, it was around 7pm and we reached Baralacha La pass, famous from the movie Jab we met, and in the Zanskar range accompanied by the famous Suraj taal lake there was mesmerizing. We took many snaps there in a hurry since we were running out of time, and the higher altitude was draining out our energies so fast that I had to catch my breath to even click photos! After spending around 10-15 minutes there, we left and in another 10 minutes, had one of the views of our lives. The famous Baralacha La view of Zanskar range snow capped mountains till eternity! It was like a huge Black forest cake with whipped cream. It was such a breathtaking view(also literally, coz of altitude again!). 

The sun had already set by then and in another 15 minutes, around 7.30pm, we reached a small place called Bharatpur. There was nothing but 3-4 huge tents where they provided food and stay. Those people advised us not to travel further in nights since crossing the streams during night would be a mammoth task and dangerous. Since we had no idea what would be next in our way, we obliged them and decided to stay there only overnight. They gave us a small box filled with charcoal set on fire. We were sitting right next to it almost all the time. It was getting colder and colder and we never felt like taking off our huge jackets.

The beds there were so soft and cozy. They provided each of us with 3-4 huge blankets, each of them resembling a bed by itself and after getting beneath at least 10kgs of blankets also, somewhere, we were feeling cold still! They served us with many glasses of Tea and then Maggi - the staple food in all the small tents over there. 

After having food, we just went outside for a minute to have a beautiful view of the snow capped mountains accompanied with the stars at night. It was such an amazing feeling to enjoy such views, totally forgetting about the outside world, work pressure, everything. Without any mobile network also, we were feeling so peaceful and even though we were so tired, our excitement never died, and then we went to the bed, thinking about the destination we wanted to reach the next day - LEH!

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