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Great bboss 2006-02-03 9:39

Hi Rich
I can really get the feel of a pass from this shot, with the mountains just visable at the end. Good composition, I like the colour of the lake and the patches of snow are interesting. A shame not be able to see the duck though
Is it correct that there is no glacier up there now?
cheers, David

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Old 02-03-2006, 05:05 PM
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Default To bboss: glacier

There were some ice cliffs on the Zanskar side and a quite substantial glacier just beyond the lake. However there was only patches of snow actually at the top of the pass.

I've looked at some of the old maps in the British Library and you can clearly see the extent to which the ice is retreating from this part of the Himalayas.

And soon the road will come! Incidentally Ram Thakur's shots of the road over the Sach pass are rather interesting - this time two year's ago it was a trekking route.
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Old 02-03-2006, 06:51 PM
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Default Re: To bboss: glacier

Its sad to see the roads spoiling the passes, and even worse to be a witness to the ends of glaciers...best enjoy these remote places while we can!!
Talking of which I am hopefully off to India in november, and was thinking I may go to Himachel ( as its been many years). Do you think it will be too cold for enjoyable trekking then? Can you recommend any particular routes?
cheers, David
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Old 02-04-2006, 12:24 PM
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Default Re: To bboss: glacier

Hi David,

November is the cusp of the trekking season in Himachal but I think that most of the passes will still be open - particularly at the start of the month. In terms of scenery the months of October and November are also about my favourite times - cold and crisp, snow on the tops and autumnal browns below.

Treks I would recommend – the Indrahar or Jalso passes over the Dhaula Dhar range are both fine walks – nice and varied through Gaddi villages, forest, alpine pastures and with excellent views from the top. Most people tackle the Indrahar from the Dharmasala side but it’s easier for walking and better for acclimatisation to start from the Chamba valley where the climb is spread over three days instead of two. Jalso is less busy and a little lower so might be better later in the month.

Another good shorter trek from Chamba is up to the holy mountain Mani Mahesh Kailash which can also be done as a more challenging circuit. This would give you the chance to go up to the Gaddi town of Bharmour which is well of the beaten track but well worth seeing.

For trekking agencies in Dharmasala I would recommend Prem Sagar at Occidental Travels in McLoud Ganj or Milap at Summit Adventures in Bhagsu. But my final and main recommendation would be Mr Prakash Dhami who runs Mani Mahesh travels in Chamba town. Prakash has a lovely farmhouse / guesthouse (the Orchard Hut) a few miles out of Chamba which is a brilliant place to kick back and relax either before or after a trek. As well as the above mentioned treks (for which I think he charges 1500 rupees per person per day) he also does cheaper treks in the hills around Chamba – the one to Bari Jhamohar has wonderful views of the DHaula Dhar and the Pir Panjal. Prakash is a lovely chap (he also like a bit of a drink) and his wife is the best cook is India! Even if you don’t trek with them I’d suggest going to the Orchard Hut if you make it to Chamba.

Novemeber's still a while away - I bet you can't wait!

Rich
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Old 02-05-2006, 07:22 PM
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Default Re: To bboss: glacier

Hi Rich,
and thank you so much for all these wonderful tips. Lots to think about, and plenty of time yet to get excited. I hadn't really thought about Chamba before (as I know nothing about it), and was imagining lahul spiti and kinnaur mainly. But now you mention it, it does sound good. The problem always is too many places and not enough time...8-10 weeks doesn't go too far unfortunately. I certainly dont want to miss the best food in India though!
have you been to Kinnaur in your travels by the way?
Cheers, David
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Old 02-06-2006, 04:02 PM
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Default Eastern Himachal

Hi David,

I did the loop through Spiti and Kinnaur four years ago - Kunzum La, Kaza, Kibber, Ki Gompa, Dhankar, Tabo Gompa, Nako and on the Kalpa and the Sangla valley. The scenery is every bit as spectacular as that on the road up to Leh and Tabo is undoubtedly one of the most amazing cultural sights of the whole Himalayas. I expect that by november the Kunzum La and Rohtang la will be closed but, as the Hindustand-Tibet highway follows the river, then it isn't really a problem getting into Spiti from the south via Shimla and Sarahan. Better check on what the road is doing though - last year large parts were washed away during the monsoon.

November might be a bit late for the Pin Parbati pass trek but I'm sure there are planty more lower altitude treks around Kinnaur. I also remember a fantastic dhaba somewhere between Shimla and Rampur Bushahr - all the buses stop there.

Having pursuaded my partner to do the Shingo La walk last year I think we'll be going to the south for a beaches, masala dosas and temples holiday next time.

Rich
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Old 02-08-2006, 01:41 PM
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Default Re: Eastern Himachal

Hi Rich
and thanks again for your informative reply. Thats exactly the trek that I was thinking of, but I would be gutted to get there and not be able to get over the Kunzum la due to snow.
It must be an interesting area though with plenty to experience even if the main trek is not possible. I cant find much info in any of the usual guidebooks which wets my appetite even more, and I cant believe that it gets many tourists even in peak season, so november may be an enjoyable if cold time to visit.
But then again the south is good as well, heat and beaches....so many possibilities.
The Pin Parbati is definitely out though, as my girlfriend refuses to go up the parvati valley (she doesnt want to be dissapeared), and the route description in the book says you need a rope for the pass, and there is no way she will be up for that!

cheers, David
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