Cycling Manali to Leh

By Niket Vaidya | 2013

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Atop Rohtang - was a very satisfying moment for me. Comfort that my training just may be adequate. From July 13-25, 2012, my friends Harsha, Ashwin and I went on a one way cycling tour from Manali to Khardung La, Leh, India

Setting up my bike with Ashwin. We started our trip from Solang Valley in Manali, and flew back from Leh to Delhi.

Clearing the road. Over 9 days, we cycled 580 kms crossing many high altitude passes in partly tarmac partly off road mountain terrain.

Camp overnight @ Tandi. So how should you go about planning a cycling trip from Manali to Leh? You can read about tips by clicking on a link on the last pic. It covers preparation & training, mental resilence and fitness, nutrition, support vehicle, trip itenary and bike transporation.

On way we met Simon from Ireland - he''s traveled the world on a cycle in 18 months!! Also happened to be a bike mechanic and helped me fix my bike for good and show me how. A blessing to meet with them at this point

View of the mountains - probably Baralacha top; which had to be crossed that day!

Sunrise at Patseo..Fresh start.

Mansingh and his flock.

Oh its a beautiful day to take a break! We stayed an extra night in Sarchu - enjoying this beautiful landscape and cold weather.

I just love this pic...sheep grazing by sunset.

Shepherd - Suraj Singh - they come from Punjab to herd sheep in the summer.

"Nakee La. There were 6 passes in all.. Nakee la is one of them just like Rohtang and Khardungla. "

The local municipal guy was doing his rounds and giving us a bit of detail of what goes around.

Debring..desert but beautiful. I sat out of Morray Plains because of the dust and possibility of being hit by asthma, so had hitched a ride to Debring in a bus earlier in the day. Got some time to do photography and talk to local folk.

These two gentlemen are from Dehradun. Theyre both 70+ years of age. They decided to do a road trip from Dehradun to Srinagar and back via Leh in a Maruti 800 and just a few rucksacks. Staying wherever they could on the about inspiration!!

Catching up with the swiss support vehicles, they carried their own luggage on their bikes, camped wherever they felt they could not go on any longer and scaled Khardung La in 4.5 hours!!

Sheep going to graze in the highlands.

Our local Ladakhi host at Debring.

Second highest motorable road in the world.

Thik Se Monastery.

Inside the Gurudwara Pathar Sahib ie near Magnetic Hill, Leh.

On route to K-top. Also see pictures in J&K collection of Leh to Manali drive on motorbike, Manali to Srinagar drive, Chandigarh to Leh drive and Leh to Kargil.

A view of the Khardung La pass...almost there. Travel Tips in next pic include preparation, fitness and training, nutrition, bike transporation etc.

Felt really good to have done this successfully - to achieve something that is not tried by too many. To read about Travel Tips

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