Highest Motorable Road

#1 Aug 11th, 2005, 10:47
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  • MeCasa is offline
#1
What is the last day I can pull out of Delhi and come back this year and alive. Experienced rider, first class gear, packing light (no box cases) but totally unfamiliar with Bullet and India. I want to go here.


Guessers need not respond, this is my life. However, semi-educated guesses are welcome
#2 Aug 11th, 2005, 12:44
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#2
MeC, as per my understanding this post is never abandoned and there IS vehicular traffic on this road which dips forward onto Nubra valley from this point onwards. But then this movement is purely defence and deployment. Army chaps just reclaim over the whole area from civilians and tourists around winters. You need to check with BRO when they officially close down the road from Manali. Srinagar-Leh is open round the year. As such there are no official dates since road closure depends upon snow fall more then any other factor.

If you want to take things easy, Iíd say your 5th night could be in Leh after you leave Delhi.
#3 Aug 11th, 2005, 13:00
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#3
BTW the highest motorable road now is Marsimik La (18652 feet).
The one you mentioned is Khardung La (18380 feet).
this would be an interesting reading:
http://www.60kph.com/interact/marsimek_la.htm
If Life is a journey....travel on...and on..on..on.....
#4 Aug 11th, 2005, 16:29
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#4
till few years ago, pakis have been tooting their trumpet about having highest motor able road in world, beating Khardungla by little over hundred feet up, then suddenly one day Marsimik La started looming over any other claim, knowing how petty these silly little red tape buffoons can get, across any government or nation I wont be surprised if Marsimik La road was pushed few notches up to beat any possible claim in Karakoram range.. and maybe by next year we will have a joint Chinese and paki claim over having highest motorable road in world somewhere near K2 base... how much more silly this official game of records can be ?
#5 Aug 11th, 2005, 22:29
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#5
Due to the lateness of the year I will settle on Khardung La. I have also decided to forego Nepal on this trip, I will be lucky to get in country and to Leh in late October and after October it becomes suicidal to run those roads on a motorcycle. I can do Nepal on another trip.

So I have three goals for this trip, hernia repaired at Apollo, ship home a magnificent rug (I believe Srinagar would be the best place) and go to Khardung La. I will probably do more while in country but these three are my main goals

I'm doing my homework and studying what maps I have, reading travelers journals etc. But due to the lateness of time and my desire to NOT get caught in a dangerous snowstorm on a motorcycle, I would appreciate any help and/or advice on which roads to take to get to Leh and Srinagar. I can take the crcular route or come in either side and backtrack.

Whatcha think?

PS due to my hernia I haven't been able to excercise as much as I like, especially before a tough trip and while I have no doubt it would be good for my mental, physical and spiritual needs to winter in a Himilayan Monastary, all in all I'd kinda like to come home this year...........So help me get in and get out, the Enfield God's willing of course. I'm packing an extra set of carbs
#6 Aug 11th, 2005, 23:13
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#6
@MeCasa : usually the rohtang pass, the gateway to ladakh from manali side, remains open till even november (closes occasionally due to snow).. so u can take chances and hit the manali-leh highway in oct.. but if u go so late, chances of snow fall on the highway, and may be the passes on the way, is very high.
the srinagar-kargil highway remains open till nov and sometimes even dec, as most of the army supplies go from this route. but dont push it too much coz riding on a bike in snow is a NO NO until unless you have dual purpose tyres and balls of steel
all the best biker bro
#7 Aug 12th, 2005, 02:38
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#7
When I crossed the Khardung La there was a lot of traffic, most of it military. There was so much traffic that we were stuck at the top for an hour!
The Himalaya Roads staff at the top were very friendly and helpful.

It's a relatively hairy trip as you're going so high, but I've travelled far more scary roads in India.

The views back over Stok Kangri are pretty stunning, and on a clear day I reckon the Karakorams (on the other side) would be out of this world.

I hope that helps!
Good luck with the trip.

Rob
The solution to your troubles is at the bottom of a glass.
#8 Aug 12th, 2005, 13:36
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#8
Am in in about half mind to do manali-leh in late season. Since I missed the bus in may June already. Donít want to ride Enfield and my RD is bit aged, let me see if I can get around the leave issue and catch hold of something nimble, I may ride as well.
#9 Aug 12th, 2005, 15:15
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#9
Anybody have any knowledge or opinions of the CBZ?

Hippie, if you decide to go, I'll ride with you,

I'm goin' come hell or high water

I'm packin' a Moss Stardome so even if it snows we got a home
#10 Aug 12th, 2005, 16:03
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#10
MeC, Iíd say CBZ is ok thing to ride, I like the way they have set up the twin jet carb system on it, she is able to pull through most situations, doesnít over or under steer, gives back a decent 33-35 kmpl. Only thing that I donít like about her is that you canít sling your soft packs across her like the way you do on that mule. CBZ have a high rise swept up exhaust, which comes as a good feature when fording currents or flooded causeway but otherwise you need a bit of weighing jugglery to distribute the load evenly and keep load gravity lower on a CBZ. Between functionality and Retro styling, Iíd stick up with no fuss functionality of a CBZ, other alternate you can look into is Pulsar 180 by Bajaj Auto, but am not very happy the way P180 handle carburetion and clutch keep slipping so often and heat excessively. The thing is after all these years of riding in hills I am just so reluctant to done the grease pants every second day for the hack of treasuring fond memories of repairing your bike Ďup thereí while the same time can be devoted to other better idea for which you originally came. Or maybe I am just getting old and laid back.
#11 Aug 12th, 2005, 16:51
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#11
I'm the same way, I hate my gear breaking down which is why i'm beating this to death.. I spent a large amount of time on the phone with the Indian Consulate in Houston yesteday about bringing one of my bikes. One problem is that everything I got is 750cc or more, everything is old but in good shape and setup for these kind of trips. India has some kind of 500cc rule but they said I might be able to get a temporary permit. But truthfully, the cost of shipping it over and the red tape make it easier to buy an Indian bike. Although I have a Yam 750 Super Tenere that would love that country, I would love it, but even at that, I'm not sure a high compression bike will run well on bad gas and parts would have to come from Europe, it was an idea but it's not feasible.

I'll get either a low mileage CBZ or Bajaj Pulsar 180, I've already located low mileage used bikes for 40,000 rups
#12 Aug 12th, 2005, 17:15
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#12
Ok MeC, I got where you coming from, really lugging those biggie bikes is an overkill, esp. in Himalayas, they are famous or infamous for being the newest mountain range with highest fold concentration in world, this effectively means you are not going to burn the trail with a massive torque machine but rather something nifty and smallish to handle, even a sprint of 600 meters should be called 'plain road' wherever you get it after 12,000 feet as a rule. There is no 500 CC sealing as I know of to bring your bike, I see couple of 500 CC+ every season that over Landers bring in from Europe mostly.
btw high compression bikes will run even better on Indian gas as long its unadulterated, India still use low octane 89 grade petrol, and low octane simply translate = less knock but faster burn, you mite just blow up your piston crowns.. See our gas burns faster then yours ;-)
#13 Aug 13th, 2005, 07:00
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#13
Hippie, you may be correct about the total cc's. I have been told both 500 and 800, talking to the consulate is humorous, I hear a lot of if, if, maybe. maybe, and, and, but, but etc. etc. I've never seen so much confusing red tape in my life but they are extremely polite and try hard to help. I've already decided not to bring my bike, haha, I ought to leave the embassy alone but they keep calling me back with information and I get interested However, I do feel guilty

That said, the only reason I wanted to bring my bike was because it is setup specifically for this kind of trip and I know it well. I consider this a dangerous trip especially because of the late date, I feel better if I know and trust my bike, besides, I feel guilty leaving my friend behind on one of my best trips yet. Poor motorcycle's been waiting its entire life to ride the Himilayas and now I'm taking a stranger, just don't seem right

I think I've decided on a Bajaj Pulsar 180, possibly new and possibly used, I would like to save money and get used but it may be easier and faster to buy new. I'll have to see.

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