We are group of 10 members, all from different parts of the country. We mostly take trips together and love to ride. We have 7 Royal Enfield Bikes and 1 Mahindra Thar. We usually take our tents together with us and plant our tents in an open area or near a water body away from forests. It took us 10 days to complete one circuit of this road trip.
At 7 in the morning, we started from Jammu towards Chandigarh, which is about 339 km and reached there at 5 in the evening. Our other group members joined us there. We stayed in Chandigarh at our friend’s flat.
Next morning we started our journey at around 6 a.m. towards Rampur, which is 239km from Chandigarh. We visited different tourist destinations like Solan, Simla, Narkanda and Theog. We reached Rampur at around 7:00 p.m.
Third day was the actual start of this adventurous trip. We left Rampur early in the morning towards Sangla Valley which is about 120 km. Before leaving, we got our bikes checked for any faults. Despite risky roads and heavy rain, we carried on with our journey.
We visited Karcham Bangtu Power project in the way and reached Sangla at around 7 p.m.
Then we prepared ourselves for night. Tents were pitched in, bikes were parked and we started preparing food. We carry all necessary items with us. Menu was Masala Chicken and Rice. We did bone fire there, did some dance, met some foreigners and shared our experiences. He enjoyed our dinner a lot. Everybody praised Indian food. I would say – “That was a day well spent”.
This was a weird day. We had both amazing and horrifying experiences.
We started from Sangla towards Chitkul, the last Indian village, enjoyed there a lot and went for sight seeing. Baspa river and Maggi points are very good. We returned back and moved to Reckong Peo(Kalpa). We planned to stay at Reckong Peo but due to some reasons, we decided to move to Kalpa. Late in the evening, at around 8 p.m, we started for Kalpa. In our way we met a Traditional Festival Mob. We couldn’t understand what we did wrong but they asked us to turn off our vehicles and park aside. We were horrified by the incident but some how managed to leave that place and reached Kalpa by 10 p.m.
We woke up to a mesmerizing view from the balcony and that was the mighty Kinnaur Kailash. After breakfast, we started towards one of the deadly sights that is the Suicide Point (Kalpa). Then we moved towards our next destination – Nako village. We reached Nako at around 3 p.m. We came across beautiful landscapes in the way – Pooh Town (H.P) and deadly roads. This is the entry point to Spiti valley. We trekked to Nako Monastery, saw the beautiful Nako lake and village and stayed there for the day. We also celebrated one of our mates birthday there with a cake made up of Suji (Halwa).
We started early towards Kaza which is around 111 kms from Nako. After travelling for 1 hour we got struck due to a landslide on the way. But it was cleared within an hour and we moved ahead.
Then there was a registration point, where our documents and vehicle documents got verified. We reached Gue Monastery or the Mummy Monastery. It was an incredible place. After spending some time we moved towards Tabo Monastery. This was the most marvelous Monastery I have seen till date.
Thereafter, we encountered an accident, a biker got slipped and his bike get rolled into the spiti river flowing sideways. All the riders helped him and pulled his bike out. We reached Kaza by evening
We planned to stay in home stays, as they were to provide us local dishes. Home Stays are recommended because you can feel and see the local culture in their homes.
We kept this day for relaxing and sightseeing. After having traditional Spiti breakfast, we went to market. From there we visited the famous Key Monastery or Key Gompa. After spending time there, we traveled to Khibber village, highest village in Spiti valley. It’s famous for its wildlife. Post that, we visited Langza, Chicham bridge (highest bridge in Asia).
In evening, we did some shopping. We purchased the traditional Spiti artistic works.
Frankly speaking, till this day the difficulty of the trip was just 30-40 percent, actual adventure started now. As there was no metaled road the kacha road was full of pebbles. Following Kaza, there is total isolation till Losar village. We reached Kunzum pass,the highest point on this road at around 2 pm. It is believed that one should take blessings from Kunzum Devi Mandir and then move forward. Succeeding Kunzum pass there was steep downhill road, which was full of water bodies and waterfalls waterfalls till Chandertal.
Then comes the famous Chandertal Lake. After walking 200 mt. from the parking a beautiful lake surrounded by mountains on all side appears. It was an exorbiant view – cool breezes and snow-covered mountains. We were hell excited by seeing this view.
After relaxing there for sometime, we started for Batal. If you are on this route, don’t forget to visit Chacha Chachi Chandra Dhaba. We had our lunch there – rajma chawal, bread omelette and some tea.
We met some foreign from Spain and advanced towards Manali. But destiny has some more thrill for us. (It is advisable to move early in the morning till 11 am from this area as water starts flowing on the roads and it’s very difficult to judge the road. There are approx 42 waterfalls on this stretch).
One incident took place on the route – one of our bikes fell down and got damage. We lifted it on a Mahindra 407 and drove till Manali, where we gave it for repair.
But after that, a landslides took place on the road and we were struck there till 7 pm. This place was totally isolated with Chandra river(tributary of Chenab) on one side and huge mountains on other side. We pitched our tents on a grass land with other fellow travelers. We arranged our food (daal and chawal) and went to sleep.
We got up early, went to landslide site and made way for vehicles. All travelers worked together and make a passage on the road. Mahindra Thar helped out all the fellow vehicles to go across this area by towing them. After getting out from this area, we reached Chattru, the exit point of Spiti towards Manali.
After travelling 200 km off road from Kaza we finally reached Gramphu, the meeting point on Leh- Manali Highway. We were stuck in huge traffic on Rohtang pass. After coming out of this traffic we reached Manali in the evening. We stayed there at our friend’s farm house.
Finally, it was the last day of the trip. It started raining in the morning. We started our journey back at around 10 am in the rains. And it continued rain till we reached Mandi in Himachal Pradesh. After travelling for 10 hours we finally reached back home. But it seems like we are still roaming in that natural arena. Time passes by but the memories are everlasting.
About The Author
Gulliventures is a group of riders and adventure lovers. They love to explore different places. Their group consist of people from different parts of India.