After 7 hours of driving we are gaining height and traffic is dwindling...
I love these hills...
They put you in perspective
What a place to have your school...
It doesn't get green than this :)
After a tiring hike, this was bliss!
Best fish I ve ever had.... Himachal is full of rivers and rivers are full of trouts, this one was probably caught meters away from where we ate :)
This valley is called the adobe of Gods for some reason...
We started early morning from Manali to reach Keylong by afternoon, the road was closed for public till Rohtang but since we had to pass to Keylong, we were allowed to pass Kothi.
The twin peaks on the right thats Rohtang Pass, we are going to cross this from the top...
Can you make out the roads here?
How did these cut so straight?
Road block! There was police hold up in Marhi due to land slides on the road ahead.
Comotion on way to Rohtang, road is closed for vehicles till Rohtang. Stuck at Marhi for 7 hours while the road ahead was cleared of land slides.
The commotion carried on a someone suggested to remove the barricades using a bulldozer :)
We had to wait for over 7 hours before the road could be cleared. Good place to get stuck!
Trying to get the colors right.
You need a lot of faith to be driving in these hills, we were about witness why Rohtang was so difficult to cross when there were no roads
Finally BRO rescued us with Army jeeps escorting about 15 cars to cross the mountain Pass.
Sometimes you are happy chasing taillights.
The carvan! Only thse cars crossed Rohtang that evening.
The car on the right puts this picture in perspective.
Story of melting ice and washed away roads....
This beautiful waterfall was caused by the water falling from the previous picture :)
Crossing Rohtang, no time to stop as it was about to get dark.
Light plays tricks on these hills due to the bends you take, each one takes you in and out of light.
Finally we are descending, hopefully we ll find a road ahead...
Each turn on the hills brings a new view.
Thats where we are heading, peaks are about 19,000 ft on the other side, but we are heading to river in the valley below.
Two is company, got to make it to Kelong before it gets dark...
Now you know why I talked about Faith :)
Finally there is a road down there...
Waterfalls kept chasing us
And some more
Finally on the other side of Rohtang at Koksar village, the car got hit many times from underneath but no damage done
Most bridges are in good shape...
We saw more waterfalls in a day than we could count!
And they all are falling in the river Chandra, but not a good time to stop, the sun is going down and we have another hour to go...
View from our room in Keylong.
This was on the other side...
Shahsur Monastery above Keylong
The landscape changes after Tandi... on the highway to Leh...
Downtown Keylong at rush hour!
Busy roads of Keylong
Getting set for a night out
Our hotel in Keylong. HPTDC has hotels at best locations, but service or food in nothing to talk home about...
Manali - Leh Highway beyond Keylong, one of the three gateways to Keylong which remains closed to world for more than six months in a year.
Kardang Monestary opposite to Keylong, my driver refused to go further on the track to the monastery. To climb up till here one needs to go down to bottom of the valley and cross Bhaga river some thousand feet below. Had to give up the idea of visiting here :(
If you can see a yellow spec in middle of the frame towards right, thats Kardang Monestary from our hotel.
Is that a Map?
Confluence of Chandra & Bhaga Rivers, one coming from top, the other from left. You can see difference of color in the middle. Both originate from same glacier at Baralacha Pass about 80 kms from here, but travel in opposite directions and meet here to become Chandrabhaga which becomes Chenab and finally meets the Arabian Sea in Pakistan.
Pattan Valley about 10 km from Keylong, only place with some greenary in Lahual Valley
When I prefered to walk!
And walk... reminds you of movies from 60s!
Village on bank of Chandrabhaga river
Every inch of fertile land is cultivated here. Further to left, after the greens, there was a gorge with the river flowing...
These areas are cut off from the world for over 6 months a year, wood is stocked for winters.
Its a hard life out there, I wonder if they enjoy the calmness of the place like we did.
The road changes right after the village...
After just few hundred meters of green pastures the landscape reminds you where you are.
Gandhola Monastery just before Keylong is about 900 years old
How many times have you see a sign that says "Next Filling Station 365 km Ahead" Yeh, this was at Tandi is 10 km before Keylong and 370 km before Leh :)
Shashur Monastery above Keylong
Welcome to the land of Lamas.... Buddhist welcome arch before Keylong
A village opposite to our hotel in Keylong
Army trucks held up our way while coming to Keylong few days ago. The road is not very wide at places and you have to wait till they pass and it can take over half an hour. This is early morning hour when they are going for their exercise
Not much difference in the landscape here and the moon, except some dots of green...
But the waterfalls make up for it
Bye Bye Lahaul Valley
Back at Rohtang Pass
We found this place without many tourist, kids had fun in the snow before tourists from Manali arrived...
Traffic on the road!
A Gaddi Shepeard
After 4 days in desert and wilderness we are back to our green Earth, Solang Valley Resort
Clouds can't cross high mountains before Lahaul Valley, a reason why Ladakh, Lahaul Spiti & Tibet are deserts. But they do reach till Solang and we are happy to be here :)
A room with a view!
Small hike to the Solang Valley
Kavya, our daughter on the chute...
The chute passed the landing site but diver was good, circled back to the original spot.
Kullu & Lahaul Valleys, Himalayas 2011
The clouds decided to descend to the resort one afternoon.
And they captured the whole place
Finally it cleared the morning we were leaving, like a parting shot!