Post cards from Kashmir

Back in 2012 when I was planning my maiden Ladakh trip on bike one of the first decisions I had to make was whether to go via the Manali – Leh highway or via the slightly longer but more scenic National Highway 1D which starts from Srinagar and goes all the way up-to Leh. I decided to go with the later because, in addition to the ascent in this route being more gradual (and hence less chance of being stuck by AMS or Acute Mountains Sickness), it also presents the traveler with fantastic views. Another reason for me to opt for the later option over the former was the Dal lake, which I have been wanting to see since quite sometime.

First view of Kashmir Valley

First view of Kashmir Valley

The first ‘view’ I remember from the trip is undoubtedly of the valley (another name unofficially used for the Kashmir valley).… continue reading

Day 4: Ramban to Srinagar (129kms)

The destination for today was very close but still we did not start very late. By 7.30 AM, we were on the awesome roads and with cool weather and mild fog around, it was a pleasure to ride. To add to it, the sight of Chenab flowing side by side.

The road, as soon as it leaves Ramban, becomes a mix of ‘good’ & ‘ok’ and at some places, becomes ‘bad’. As we moved on, the more & more beautiful vistas came up for us to enjoy :).

One thing I noticed was, there was quite a bit of Army presence for the next 20-30kms from just outside Ramban and even the traffic movement was being managed by them. Every 100mts., there would be a group of 3-4 armed jawans walking with a red flag and communicating via wireless.… continue reading