Ladakh, What else

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The plan for the next two days was to visit Pangong Lake. It is situated at a height of about 4250 m (13,900 ft) and is 134 km long. It extends from India to Tibet and two thirds of the length the lake falls in China. The distance from Leh to Pangong is nearly 160 kms, and it takes 6-7 hours to reach. The roads have been well kept, but do get messy in between due to mountain slides and constant water flowing from the hills.

The drive is quite scenic and during the entire trip, not more than 50-60 cars passed us from the other side. A permit is needed for the journey and the same is verified at 7 check posts at various passes. Dorje had it all arranged, all we needed to do was relax in the car and enjoy the journey!

We started at 9 am in the morning and crossed Shey,Thiksey village and left all signs of inhabitation behind us with the beautiful hills and the long road for a company. As we started climbing up the hill, the temperature began to fall. We did see few small villages en route. On getting out of the car at Changla Pass, the third highest pass in the world (5270 m./17,300 ft.), we could actually feel the chill in the air piercing through our skin and lack of oxygen made breathing feel like an exercise. This was the highest point of the trip to Pangong.

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Oak Grove Inn, Lansdowne – Review

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There aren’t too many options to stay and most of them offer very basic amenities. After a lot of research on the internet, we realized that all the hotels with decent reviews (Blue Pine Resort, FairyDale Resort, GMVN Tourist Guest House etc) were booked for the weekend. I was trying to get in touch with anyone who’d give us a room to stay so that we could escape the city and accidentally found just one review of Oak Grove Inn on one of the hotel review websites. That gave me a lead, I googled further and got to the hotel’s website with contact information and called Colonel Rawat (the owner) to check if they had any space left. To my surprise, he plainly said that all the rooms were available and we’re welcome to stay over the weekend.

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