“Biking is not a girl’s thing..” Where have we heard that before? Oh! Everywhere!! But funky girls love to break all the barriers! They are free spirits who love to live life on their own terms. Are you one such funky girl? Then this blog is definitely for you!!
Biking is totally cool!! And biking at the highest motorable pass in the world i.e. at Khardungla is so enthralling that no one should miss it!! However, it is not as easy as it seems. Although you are riding a bike here in your own city does not mean that you can easily conquer the mountains of Karakoram in Ladakh! They test the limits of endurance borne by human body. You have to be extremely prepared for this trip, which will be a test for your daredevil soul.
It is always advisable to rent a bike in Leh. But before that do not forget to practice here in the mountains of Sahyadri to acquaint yourself with driving around the extreme narrow roads. Choose your poison….I mean bike! If you are going to hire a Royal Enfield in Leh, be sure to practice it here on the similar bike. IF you are going to ride a bike then it will make a difference if you join biking groups like Bikerni. IF you are riding pillion, then these short trips will be sufficient enough to make you ready.
Also, it makes a difference if you are carrying your own luggage. If you have a van which is carrying luggage for you then your journey might be comparatively simple. But with the luggage, petrol cans and tenting equipment, the bike will become extremely heavy and might lose its balance. Be sure to be aware of these facts and prepare accordingly. Many bikers do carry their own luggage, but you need to be aware of what to expect.
Ensure that you get a doctor’s clearance to go on the mountains of Leh. Khardungla being the highest motorable road, the lack of oxygen may cause issues due to breathlessness. Even though you have been cleared to go by your doctor, make sure you do a rigorous workout few weeks prior to the visit.
Ladakh, the rugged Himalayan region, is clean, untouched paradise that leaves you mesmerized for sure! You carry memories from your journey those last for a lifetime. We have already shared the places to visit in Ladakh in our earlier blog – Nubra valley, Shanti stupa, magnetic hill, Khardungla pass-the highest motorable pass in the world and the Diskit Gompa monastery – are just a few highlights!! There are many more monastries, villages and motorable roads you travel through.
How is the experience for the bikers – Well it is certainly not a piece of cake.The roads are touch to traverse, the weather can be harsh at times and you would also have to cross the ice cold waters in your journey. But what makes the journey memorable is the beautiful landscape and the thrill of conquering!
What to carry :
Weather is very different in Ladakh. So at times you will feel very hot yet the temperature might drop to zero at nights. Dressing in layers is mandatory. Carry good quality woolens, jackets, inners, socks and don’t forget to carry hand gloves. You will freeze while driving and hence hand gloves are must! Also do carry good quality sunscreen, moisturizer, lip balm and most importantly goggles to save you from glares.
Tanks of your bikes should be full and also carry some petrol in cans as there are very less petrol pumps along the way. Also carry toolkit and puncture kit with you. You must also have some knowledge on how what to do in case the bike tyre gives out. If you are traveling with a group then it becomes much simpler as there are people to help you.
You might experience Acute Mountain Sickness due to the high altitude. Hence keep Diamox tablets and camphor with you.
For some places like Pangong lake Inner Line permit is required for Indian National as well. Getting permit is not a tough job. Hotel guys can help you with the permit or you can get it yourself at the DC office in Leh.
What to eat:
Trip to Ladakh is incomplete without trying their traditional Thukpa. Although you get Maggie noodles at all the places you travel. Momos is also a favourite dish for the travelers in Leh – Ladakh. Do carry some dry fruits and energy bars with you to eat in case you feel low on energy.
Where to stay:
There aren’t any luxury hotels in this region. But the hotels have all basic necessities and people are warm and helpful .Do try staying in the tents for a thrilling experience.
Finally, a short out to all the Funky Girls – Let’s plan a trip to Leh; what do you think?