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esfahani Padam - A travel report by Ralph
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Padam,  India - flag India
3204 readers

esfahani's travel reports

How to climb the top of the world?!

  32 votes
Herewith I would like to give you some ideas to trek around the Indian Himalaya on your own. (It will cost you only the half of a package tour and brings you a unique life experience!)

Padam travelogue picture
A good place to start is Padum, somewhere hidden between the huge mountains. If your once in Delhi, the most of your way is behind you. But the last kilometre are a little tricky! - Flights up to the north, are often full during the summer time, which is the only to access the mountain range. So, if your time is limited book the ticket at home thru the internet. Plan at least a three weeks in total, especially if you are first time in India! Time to go: June to October

Favourite spots:
Padam travelogue picture
We went from Delhi to Srinagar/ Kashmir by air, for about EUR 100,00 (one way), taken a bus to Kargil (about 12 h) – we spend a night there and got luckily a bus ticket the next morning by 3 am to Padum. If you like to find it on your map, check: ~ 77,0 East/ 33,0 North. After the journey we feel more dead than alive – sitting 17 hours on the backseat of a 50 years old bus – sharing with about 50 farmers the experience. If you are deciding to go on such a tour with your friends, you might hire a jeep in Kargil!!! – the bus goes about 1 or 2 times a week only. Padum is a small, developing village with some simple stores, restaurants and guesthouses too, even a campground for package groups. The two of us bring everything on provisions, just need to get a kerosene for the stove, available in the village.

What's really great:
For any detailed questions in your equipment or even treks routes just send me an mail! One of the most important things: do not stuff more in your backpack than a third of your own weight (70kg weight, means about 25kg on your back) – else… ELSE … you return after a day back to Padum, change your plans totally and hire a horseman. Get you a guide? – available in Padum, just ask around. Sometimes the also cook for you, bringing all the equipment. Generally you can rent everything there, especially in Leh. But where is the challenge??? – We agreed from the beginning that our horseman is only responsible for feeding the two packing horses (they do not rent out one only!), cooking we did together and such things – a GPS or a guide is not really necessary if you are good in orientations and planning the tour well in advance.

Padam travelogue picture
The trail I planned to do, crossed the mountains north to Leh, takes about 10 days crossing three times passes more or less 5000 m and several rivers.

To save some time we decided to walk south, following the valley to
Purne, Kargyak, Shingo La (5090m) ending up on the road at Darcha.

After the crossing pass the trail descends steeply, so I do not recommend the opposite direction!

From there we took the bus to Manali (read Ravi’s report)

hmm... right now I remember one only, but forgot the name! its round, and the roof its an old parachute on half way to Darcha.

Padam travelogue picture
...hmmm, well if you like butter tea, you will find some pubs.
Butter tea: green tea with salted yak butter, 50:50 mixture.
Watch out! - mostly your tea glass is outside oily too so that our drink might flipp away!

Published on Friday December 10th, 2004

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Fri, Oct 26 2007 - 04:45 AM rating by barcelona

Adventure man you are! 5 points you deserve for this lovely report. Thanks.

Sun, Oct 21 2007 - 11:33 AM rating by marianne

I must have overlooked this report when you published it. It was a good read and very nice photos

Mon, Nov 07 2005 - 07:35 PM rating by akhila

Another interesting account of an exciting trip!

Fri, Sep 30 2005 - 02:45 PM rating by jorgesanchez

Hi Ralph
Why I did not see this excellent report earlier? Is very useful! Few people risk travelling to that area. Congratulations. Only for your audacity you deserve 5*. You have written few reports but all are super class.

Thu, Sep 29 2005 - 08:31 PM rating by eirekay

Ralph, this sounds fantastic! Great photos too! Thanks!

Mon, Sep 26 2005 - 03:35 PM rating by isaacmolina

you are very brave

Fri, Jan 28 2005 - 07:22 AM rating by ardelia

I'd love to do this one day,nice write up! Cool pictures too

Fri, Dec 31 2004 - 03:21 AM rating by fieryfox

Interesting. Thanks for sharing these insights with us.

Sat, Dec 11 2004 - 08:20 PM rating by magsalex

Very nice report!

Sat, Dec 11 2004 - 03:24 AM rating by mistybleu

The title of your report was very intriguing, and I am glad it wasn't disappointed. A really nice report, and also great pictures. Misty ((*_*))

Sat, Dec 11 2004 - 02:52 AM rating by ravinderkumarsi

hii ralph,
excellent report on padam and leh ,i think leh has lot to see and wish that u had been to all places

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