Roadmaps for Manali to Leh expedition

#1 Aug 28th, 2011, 01:00
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#1
Hello everyone,

Me and my friend are planning a biking trip from Manali to Leh. I have never traveled this route before and as such have no experience although I have been gathering any and all information I can by reading the existing threads.

I hate to admit it but I have terrible sense of direction. So I ask, are there any reliable well detailed roadmaps available for the Manali to Leh route?

Is there a chance one might get lost if they don't carry any maps?

I assume we will encounter many forks in the road and I am very prone to making wrong decisions, so I think I will need a map of sorts.
#2 Aug 28th, 2011, 01:28
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#2
LOl

not if u r on bike u r not going to get lost

there is only one road from keylong to leh and there are signs every where
#3 Aug 28th, 2011, 02:17
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#3
I knew this would be a silly question but I had to ask since I have no experience along this route. I had no idea there would be signs everywhere being in the mountains and all. That makes me a lot more confident. Thank you JINI.

Another question, how late do you think we can go on this expedition? Would first or second week of October be too late?
#4 Aug 28th, 2011, 11:56
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#4
Quote:
Originally Posted by madascene View Post I knew this would be a silly question but I had to ask since I have no experience along this route. I had no idea there would be signs everywhere being in the mountains and all. That makes me a lot more confident. Thank you JINI.

Another question, how late do you think we can go on this expedition? Would first or second week of October be too late?
See if following map helps you or not. Also find an approx distance / time between major milestones of Manali - Leh highway taken by a biker.

Distance is something you can rely on, time you shouldn't as that completely depends on road condition, weather, breaks one is taking in between etc, this is just to give you a rough idea.

** Rohtang is such a bad shape now even people taking 20 hours to do first stretch instead of what is shown as 6:45hrs.

BRIEF DISTANCE / TIME CHART
* Manali - Jispa: 144 kms / 6:45 hrs
* Jispa – Deepak Tal (Lake): 23 kms / 0:50 hrs
* Deepak Tal – Suraj Tal: 30 kms / 1:00 hrs
* Suraj Tal – Baralach La (Pass): 3 kms / 0:05 hrs
* Baralach La –Sarchu: 34 kms / 1:15 hrs
* Sarchu – Gata Loops Start: 26 kms / 0:40 hrs
* Gata Loops Start – End: 10 kms / 0:20 hrs
* Gata Loops End – NakeeLa (Pass): 11 kms / 0:25 hrs
* NakeeLa – Lachung La (Pass): 12 kms / 0:30 hrs
* Lachung La – Pang: 23 kms / 1:05 hrs
* Pang – More Plains (These start at approximately this point and stretch for about 50 kms): 7 kms / 0:20 hrs
* More Plains Start – Taglang La (Pass): 70 kms / 1:55 hrs
* Taglang La – Gya: 37 kms / 1:15 hrs
* Gya – Upshi: 27 kms / 0:35 hrs
* Upshi – Karu: 15 kms / 0:15 hrs
* Karu – Shey: 23 kms / 0:25 hrs
* Shey – Leh: 15 kms / 0:20 hrs


Also October any week in this road is having some risk and chance associated with it, more so though after October 2nd week. But the high passes can be blocked anytime from Sep onwards.

But I would strongly suggest do it by October 1st week, if one reason be weather second is certainly be Raid De Himalaya car rally that is scheduled in 2nd week in this route and that may completely throw you out of plan as they block the highways and book almost all accommodations enroute which would create troubles for others.
Attached Images
manali-leh.jpg 
#5 Aug 28th, 2011, 13:40
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Thank you for the extremely helpful reply and the map, kshil. Knowing about the various stopping points on route certainly gives me a better idea for planning ahead.

Since October is not a good time for this trip, I am afraid we would have to postpone it to June/July next year. Anyway, I don't like to hurry through a trip and would like to atleast take 3 weeks out for this trip which I believe wont be possibly in October.

We also have alternate plans to visit Kashmir last week of December this year for a little vacation. Went with family last year and it wasn't quite fun, so doing it again this year with friends.

Still haven't decided whether to take a flight to Leh at that time since we will be free for the entire months of Dec/Jan and hence time is not an issue. Will surrounding parts of Leh like Khardung La and Pangong Tso be open in January?
Last edited by madascene; Aug 28th, 2011 at 14:53..
#6 Aug 28th, 2011, 16:40
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#6
I believe, rather than June/July take your chance in Sep begin, the roads would be much stabilized and improved, water crossings would be low and roads would be in all probability open (though you have to keep some buffer), Also Sep means low season, so less number of crowds and better deals.

You can fly in to Leh in Dec/Jan, In Jan people go to Leh for famous chadar trek (Trek on frozen Zanskar river) you can also visit Nubra and Pangong as BRO maintains Khardungla and Changla regularly and barring few days of heavy snow you should get them open. Definitely it's a different experience seeing snowclad Nubra valley or frozen Pangong in Jan. But accommodation options are limited, water/power scarcity may be there in a tough weather. So you have to set your expectation accordingly but if you go, certainly you would experience a different Ladakh than what many of us discuss in these forums everyday.

Wish you a safe and nice trip!!
#7 Aug 28th, 2011, 20:49
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#7
Thanks for the all the helpful information, kshil. Its great news that the roads in Ladakh are well maintained by BRO even in Dec/Jan.

Are taxis available for hire for a little sightseeing during that time in Leh? Or better yet, will bike rentals be available or do they close shop for the winter?
#8 Aug 28th, 2011, 21:38
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Originally Posted by madascene View Post Thanks for the all the helpful information, kshil. Its great news that the roads in Ladakh are well maintained by BRO even in Dec/Jan.

Are taxis available for hire for a little sightseeing during that time in Leh? Or better yet, will bike rentals be available or do they close shop for the winter?
Taxis should definitely be available, Bike Rental I am not too sure though but I can ask in my forthcoming trip to Leh in end Sep/begin Oct this year regarding that and would inform you.
#9 Aug 29th, 2011, 13:40
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Thank you again, kshil. It would be awesome if you can ask about the bike rentals. Please don't forget to post here or PM me when you get back since I don't know when you will be back. I will be eagerly waiting for your response.
#10 Aug 29th, 2011, 13:42
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Originally Posted by madascene View Post Thank you again, kshil. It would be awesome if you can ask about the bike rentals. Please don't forget to post here or PM me when you get back since I don't know when you will be back. I will be eagerly waiting for your response.
I would be back by 10th/11th October, please send me a PM after that, in case I forget, I would surely getback to you with whatever information I could gather.
#11 Aug 29th, 2011, 19:12
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#11
Any one know how much Bike rental will cost from Manali to Leh (one way trip) and drop off at Leh. Even if you give rough estimate it will be helpful
#12 Aug 29th, 2011, 20:21
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#12
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Originally Posted by mr_India View Post Any one know how much Bike rental will cost from Manali to Leh (one way trip) and drop off at Leh. Even if you give rough estimate it will be helpful
mr_India, based on the information I have gathered, I can tell you that one way bike rentals will always be very expensive. Expect to pay somewhere around 2.5k/day for Enfields and I think around 2.2k/day for Pulsars. Obviously final price depends on your bargaining power as usual.

Another thing you should keep in mind is that rented bike usually are very poor in quality and give poor mileage. So be prepared accordingly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kshil View Post I would be back by 10th/11th October, please send me a PM after that, in case I forget, I would surely getback to you with whatever information I could gather.
Thank you for doing this kind sir. Will do so.
#13 Aug 31st, 2011, 10:55
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#13
Ah, Thanks Madascene. Now I have to check other options for reliable bikes.
#14 Jul 13th, 2012, 18:05
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#14
I want to go to Manali - Leh in the month of August 2012 by my own Scorpio. I hope there wont be any probs from Taxi Union people as I have heared they create. Please suggest
#15 Jul 22nd, 2012, 12:14
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#15
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Originally Posted by vikasbhagat212 View Post I want to go to Manali - Leh in the month of August 2012 by my own Scorpio. I hope there wont be any probs from Taxi Union people as I have heared they create. Please suggest
Only if your vehicle has a Taxi number outside of Leh. No problem for private vehicles. We covered lot of Ladakh in a self driven rental car. At few places Taxi drivers asked us but finding no driver around they did not cause any issue.

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