We drove the highest one could possibly drive
May 18, 2008
Jul 20, 2008
After eating a crappy breakfast at the expensive Leh View rooftop restaurant, we decided it was the last time we'd go to a touristy place to eat. We stopped in a small restaurant, about the size of a bathroom, on the way back to the guesthouse and had some much better chai and bread for 20 rs. The jeep was waiting for us when we got back, and we headed out for the Nubra Valley wound up on 2 cups of chai each. The road snaked up through the mountains to the highest mountain pass in the world, Khardung la (18,380ft.), finally high enough for us to touch the snow of the Himalayas. It was freezing cold and raining, but we got out and took pictures anyways and tried not to let our cameras get too wet. On the way down to the valley, it was windy and the sand and dust filled the air. It was basically a sand storm, and made for some dramatic scenery against the mountains. We stopped at a Gompa for a quick picture, had some noodles and dal at a small restaurant, and drove to the sand dunes towards Hunder village. After we had our fill of pics of two-humped camels and a rainbow at the sand dunes, we found a guesthouse to stay in, ordered dinner, went for a walk through the lush green village of Hunder, came back to eat, and hit the hay. It's hard to imagine that we went from snow and freezing rain, to desert sandstorms and sand dunes, to a lush green valley in one day of driving. I think that's what makes the ride to the Nubra Valley so fantastic.