The Biker Diaries – A Trip To Leh

Udaipur is not merely a city of lakes or a tourist destination, there is a much larger part of Udaipur than what meets the eye.With the continuous exposure, strive for achieving an extra edge and increased hunger for adventure and fun has led the udaipurites to challenge many odds.

Following is the story by Ankesh Sharma, a biker and definitely an adventure lover.


Motor biking to Leh is the dream of every biker. We were planning for this since last year and this year when I and my brother decided to make our dream come true. We departed for Manali on July 17, 2012 and dived into the universe of adventures. It was Royal Enfield 350 cc Machismo motorbike that we were riding.

The beauty of Rohtang Pass was not less than that of heaven. The snow covered mountains and waterfalls made us feel we were in Heaven. The Drive up till Leh does require a lot of preparation but the worst part on our side was that we were without any preparation.

The first stop was made at Keylong which was 120 kilometers ahead of Manali. After that we stopped at Sarchu and we got our petrol tanks filled at a station called Thandi that came before Keylong as there was no filling station till Leh. It was a No Network area too.



Sarchu was a place that was on the border of Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir. Here we had to get registered-in by the police. It was cold in Sarchu and the next day we started early since we had to cover up to Leh. The way from Sarchu till Leh was very beautiful and we came across the unseen beauty of nature.

Sometimes we drove with a river, sometimes crossed snow covered mountains and sometimes sandstone formations of Kangla Jal. Driving on the 21 loops of Ghata loops was also fascinating. This was how we reached up to Pong which is the highest army transit camp of the world. After Pong as we drove upwards we came across more plains (this was at the altitude of 17,000 feet above the sea level). It was very difficult to drive on this road because of low oxygen level and poor roads. Many times we had to go off road.


Then came Tanglang La which is the world’s second highest motor able pass and while coming down from there we got our motorbike’s tyre flattered. Fortunately we met some bikers who helped us in getting the tyre tube changed and finally we reached Leh the same day.

The following day we visited the landmarks of Leh namely Leh Palace, Shanti Stupa, Namgyal Tsemo Gompa followed by the visits to Magnetic Hill, Sangam and Hall of Fame the next day.

(Just for the record : Every tourist requires a permit to visit Nubra Valley and Pangong Lake. Permit can be made at the DC office of Leh.)

The third day we came across  the world’s highest motor able pass called Khardung La Pass and also visited the monastery of Diskit and the sand dunes of Hunder, riding on sand dunes in middle of snow covered mountains was a good experience.

We thought of returning back to Leh on the same day but the drivers are strictly recommended not to drive before 7am and after 5pm because roads may block anytime and you don’t get help. So today the night stay was made at Diskit only.

The next morning we left for Leh. The very same day we decided to drive towards Manali and decided to reach Rumtsey, which is a town located 80 Kilometers before Leh. We halted at a town called Lato. We stayed at a rented room, (rented to us by a local family). Walls made of mud, wooden roof and floor covered with carpet. On top of that there was no electricity and we had dinner in candlelight. The house was on the bank of river Indus. It was like a night of fairy tales.

The next day we halted at Sarchu and there the bike broke down. Flattered Tyres, broken clutch wire and shock absorber. Fortunately we met a truck driver from Rajasthan who helped us in carrying the bike till Manali.

Biking to Leh is a good experience for those who prioritize adventures. However Poor road connectivity and unavailability of proper medical facility makes this tour little bit risky. Also the charges charged by the localities for the services provided by them were very annoying.

In the nutshell I will conclude that motor biking to Leh is a must go for adventure lovers but for tourists, I will say a big NO.

The Photo Gallery is as  Follows :



An Article By : Mr. Ankesh Sharma & Mr. Natwar Singh Rajawat

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