We started in the morning for Pangong Lake. It was a 7 hours journey. Pangong lake is where 3 idiots climax scene was shot. Travelling was hectic… roads were treacherous and the high altitude starting making most of the people dizzy. KC was not well throughout. He was cold and dizzy. We came across snow covered mountains and it was soooooooo cold. Btw, I forgot to describe my outfit… my best one. I had worn a Wills Lifetyle skirt… with skin colored tights… they were woollen and warm… with a red Zara spaghetti top and red Zara cardigan. I had the overcoat over it plus a black stole.
We reached the Chang La pass which is the 3rd highest in the world. There was snow everywhere and the highest cafeteria. I got down from the bus to go to the loo and felt so dizzy. Slowly and steadily, I reached the cafe, went around the back which was covered with snow and came to the loo. I didn’t think that snow would be so slippery. It is common sense but the feeling was new. Its not like I skate at home on the snow.
A word of caution…. there are hardly any loos on the way… the few that we came across were dirty and filthy. I am quite particular about men peeing on the roads but in this case they did not have an option. There are still some loos for women but none for men.
We kept moving up the mountains till the peaks were parallel and then moving down… and then moving up. It was an amazing experience. Lunch was at a small hut on the way. By 2 pm they were out of food…. and we had to satisfy ourselves with Maggi and egg bhurji. It was so cold outside we huddled in the one room kitchen while the women cooked for us.
Pangong lake arrived at 6 pm. The cold was biting and fierce. We savoured the lake… its pristine beauty… clicked many many pics… and then I left the group to return to the vehicle. My overcoat was with KC and those 5 mins of walking in the cold took its toll. I was slightly woozy on the way to the tent which was 10 mins away.
There was a huge goof up… our agent had booked 5 tents but the manager there had given away 2 of them on first come first serve basis. There were 10 of us and 3 tents… no phone signal… no way to sort it out. The guys then took the vehicle to the nearest STD booth to sort things out. I sat inside one of the tents and suddenly started shivering. When KC returned he gave me his warm clothes and covered me with 4 blankets. I was still shivering. It was scary… no phone signal to call my dad for medicines… no medical care… and no way out. KC was took great care all night… brought me dinner… kept checking on me every hour… got me ORS to prevent dehydration. He was not too well either. All night I kept waking up wondering when it will be morning so we could leave from there.
Next morning I was slightly better but wanted to get to Leh to rest. I was tired and not in the mood to continue the trip. On the way back, everyone else wanted to visit monasteries and the palace. I was screwed. All I wanted to do was return safe to the hotel. After stopping at Thiksay monastery for an hour (I did not join), the palace was skipped ‘coz nobody wanted to climb so high… and we reached Leh.
KC and I decided to skip last 2 days of the trip. I was actually planning to return 2 days earlier… better to recover at home than in a hotel at Leh.
Next… day 5 and 6 at Leh. I leave you with some pics:
These are ‘marmots’… they go into hibernation during winter… are herbivores and quite friendly
Snow at Chang La pass
World’s 3rd highest pass
The place where 3 idiots climax was shot