Leh, Ladakh in the Himalayas, Sept/October 2009

The Mountaineers near the end of the trip, looking as fresh as Day 1!  At Base Camp (grounds of our lovely hotel, Hotel Shamba-la).

Standing: Manga, Shivani, John, Shashi, Anil, Vishnu, Aku, Pradeep

Sitting: Heidi, Neerja, Meena, Janice, Irene.


Enjoying camel rides in the Desert .. Bactrian camels with two humps. 


The Gang at Pangong Lake, at an altitude of 14,270 ft is one of the highest lakes in the world.  It is a long thin lake, 83x3miles, and partly lies in China. Although it is a saltwater lake, it freezes over in the winter.  The Bollywood movie "3 Idiots" was partly filmed here. 

From left: Manga, Anil, Aku, Shashi, Pradeep

Compare with the picture taken in 2001 in Canada! 


Janice and Irene at Changla Pass

At Khardungla Pass: As the notice says, it is the world's highest motorable road.  At this point we are at a higher altitude than Mt Kenya.  Breathing was difficult here, as we were not acclimatised and had just driven here from Leh, 39 km to the south.  However we saw two European cyclists clad in lycra who had cycled all the way from Leh.  We on the other hand had a disposable oxygen cylinder and it came in very useful for the unfit one who suddenly tried sprinting.  Khardungla is a military post and the soldiers provide refreshing sweet tea to travellers. 


.... more photos to follow soon, after an important paper is written... It is a tough life, a scientist's ...with papers and grants to write and difficult PhD students to manage..

28aug10: There has been some progress in my paper writing and my group at college is doing great work, so I can indulge a bit:

"The urinal with the best view in the world"

Photographed at the Thikse Monastry, about 30 km from Leh.

Convoy of Indian military trucks in the mountain.  Getting stuck behind a convoy when uphill is bad as the convoy crawls while billowing out massive amounts of diesel exhaust.  Best to wait for half an hour at the base and let the convoy get away.

A beautiful, serene statue of Budha in Thikse Monastry.  Spanning two floors, it is awe-inspiring.


Neerja next to a stunningly beautiful silk carpet.  It cost a fortune, but we will go back to buy it one day.

Neerja and Pradeep at Leh Gate.  Not sure if it has an official name.  Will wait for the experts to tell me (Irene please?).