Friday, July 24, 2009

Day 8, 27 June, Zanskar Valley

The day started quite early. We had to try to get our bike across. In between, we were searching for the keys of the bike. Last day's incident had lead to big confusion and I had forgotten the keys at the bike.
Certainly, we were worried about the bike's security. It was about 4-5 Kms of distance from the village. We started moving towards the bike and within 1 hr, we reached at the stream. It was a big sigh of relief to find bike along with the key :)
Water level of the stream was decreased significantly so we could get the bike across it.
Here, we met 2 guys from New Zealand. They were riding a truck from Panikhar. But, they had to spent the previous night there itself as another truck was stuck in the stream.
Then, we came back to the home where we had spent the night. The owner offered us some tea along with bread.
There were 3 children in the family. The youngest was about 2-3 years old and he was really cute.
Before leaving the home, I gave them 300 Rs. Although, all the things they had done for us, were invaluable. With a humbled mind, we left for Padum.
Meanwhile, the bike carrier was broken at two places and the bad roads made it difficult to keep the luggage tight on the carrier.
On the way, we decided to visit Karsha monastery, the biggest monastery in the Zanskar region.
We reached there around 10 am. The monastery is located up on the mountain. Climbing up to the monastery was quite a bit tough task. Low oxygen level at that height made it really difficult. Our condition can be imagined easily as we had to take break after climbing up just 2 or 3 steps.
Finally, we reached on the top. The panorama one can see from here is amazing.
You can see Padum village on the other side of Zanskar river. After spending some 30-40 min, we climbed down and headed towards Padum. Roads from Karsha to Padum was really good, a well laid tarmac one.
It was really easy to find tourist bungalow as the village is not too big. After having lunch, we decided to take some rest instead of continuing to Zangla. Also, we had to get the carrier repaired. Between, the brake lever got twisted as our bike skidded on a rock.
We spent rest of our day doing other important things and took some much needed rest.
Next day, we had to start pretty early so as to reach Kargil on the same day.

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