A Leh Ladakh bike trip involves traveling at a higher altitude. Oxygen is also harder to come by at higher altitudes. Comparing the oxygen level to normal sea levels reveals a lower level. When you move from a lower altitude to a higher altitude, your body has a difficult time adjusting to the decrease in oxygen levels. Acute mountain sickness, or AMS, or other serious symptoms may result from not taking precautions. Even if you don’t feel thirsty, staying hydrated can help prevent AMS.
Every biker, regardless of gender, hopes to take a Leh Ladakh bike trip at least once in their lifetime. They imagine a trip that is completely uneventful, but there are many flaws in reality. We made every effort to compile all the information in this blog that will help bikers overcome any obstacles along the way, knowing that they are bound to encounter some obstacles in a rough landscape like that of Leh and Ladakh.
All about the Leh Ladakh Bike Trip.
Let’s have a look at the 12-day Leh Ladakh Bike Trip.
Day 1: Entry into Manali
This is the day of your Leh Ladakh bike trip that you get to Manali. You are most likely traveling by car from Delhi or intend to take a ride from Manali. If you’re coming from Delhi, it’s advised to take a day off at Manali because the drive will be sufficiently long. Check your bikes to see if there are any problems. Unless you have hired a mechanic for your trip who will accompany you, make sure you double-check everything about your bike here. Get ready for your permits first and foremost, and enjoy your Leh Ladakh bike trip!
Day 2: Manali to Keylong via the ATAL Tunnel
The time and distance between Manali also known as the Keylong have significantly decreased since the Atal Tunnel (also known as the Rohtang Tunnel) and the Leh-Manali highway opened. It used to take over 6 hours to travel the road, which was feared by both travelers and bikers. Now, it takes less than 2 hours.
The 9.02 km long Atal Tunnel is the world’s longest tunnel above 10,000 feet and is named for the late Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Only 24 km separate Manali from the south portal of the tunnel that leads to the Manali end. The tunnel’s North Portal can be reached in 15 to 20 minutes, and Keylong, which is only 37 kilometers away, can be reached in 60.
Adventurers will miss out on the scenery and the challenging riding conditions but will save a lot of time, even though riding through the Atal tunnel at such a height is an experience in and of itself. Even Day 3’s journey can be completed today if you’re traveling through the tunnel. You can move on to the following section without taking the tunnel.
Should you take the Atal Tunnel while on the Leh Ladakh bike trip?
- It is recommended to use the tunnel today if you are traveling with children or people who are 50 or older because the altitude gain will be minimal.
- You can take the tunnel to save time and a lot of fuel if your budget or number of days is limited.
- You shouldn’t take the tunnel if you’re an adventurous rider who wants to learn what it takes to ride in the mountains. Refer to the section after that.
Start your Leh Ladakh bike trip at 8 AM, it’s better if done sooner.
The gain in altitude: 6,726 feet to 10,100 feet. 10,171 feet at the Atal Tunnel, the highest point attained. Road conditions: The roads are in generally good shape as of this writing.
The Atal Tunnel is simply incredible! Fill up at Manali, and make sure to bring at least one empty can with you that holds five liters or less. Keylong offers a wide variety of tents and rooms for guests to stay in. The final fuel station for the following 365 kilometers is located at Tandi, just before Keylong. Fill the extra cans as well as your tank all the way up. Manali – Rohtang Pass – Keylong (Alternate Route) (120 kms – 8 hours)
If you are up for a challenge and if you choose to travel by road without using the Atal tunnel! Your Leh Ladakh bike trip has officially begun. You should set out early today and ride fairly slowly. It is on this day, as you gradually ascend, that you will first see the snow-covered mountains.
For the first portion of your journey, you will be driving through thick forests. beginning at 8 AM. The sooner, the better. 6,726 to 10,100 feet of elevation gain. The highest elevation attained: was 13,050 feet. Rapid elevation gain is occurring. Take a medication that has been prescribed by a doctor, such as Diamox.
Road conditions: Up until Rohtang La Pass, the roads are in generally good condition as of this writing. The worst route is from Rohtang Pass to Koksar, which is 50 kilometers before Keylong. Fuel points: Fill up at Manali, and make sure to bring at least one empty can with you that holds five liters or less. The final fuel station for the following 365 kilometers is located at Tandi, just before Keylong. Fill the extra cans as well as your tank all the way up. Keylong offers a wide variety of tents and rooms for guests to stay in.
Day 3: Travel from Keylong to Jispa, Zing Zing Bar, Baralachla Pass, and Sarchu (110 km – 8 hours)
The Leh Ladakh bike trip’s busiest day is right now. Everything can be found here, from small streams that cross dangerous roads to the azure waters of some of the most picturesque lakes like Deepak Tal and Suraj Tal. Start your journey at 8 AM, it’s always better if done sooner.
The gain in altitude: 10,100 to 14,070 feet.
The highest elevation attained: was 16,040 feet.
Highway conditions The roads are in good condition, with the exception of a few kilometers close to Keylong and near the streams. The final few miles to Sarchu are terrible. All of it is mud and gravel. Energy points: Not today’s fuel points! A place to stay in Sarchu: At Sarchu, there are numerous camps and tents available. You can make a reservation online or look for one on the spot.
Day 4: Travel 265 kilometers (10 hours) from Sarchu to Lachung La, Pang, Taglang La, and Leh.
The High Passes Day. This is the longest day of the Leh Ladakh bike trip you will experience on this trip. This ride is challenging. From Sarchu to Leh, there is a general decrease in elevation, but you would pass through some of the highest passes along the way, with elevations ranging from 15,500 feet (at Nakeela Pass) to 17,500 feet (Taglangla Pass). This day’s highlight is the highway between Pang and Leh’s Gata loops and Moore plains.
Beginning at 7 a.m. Anything after 8 a.m. is problematic.
Drop in altitude: 14,070 feet to 11,480 feet
17,480 feet, or the highest point, was at Taglang La Pass.
After Gata Loops, the roads are in reasonable condition until they reach Nakeela Pass. The roads from Nakeela Pass to Pang are terrible. Avoid the hairpin turns by taking a long way around. The best roads can be found between Pang and Leh.
Fuel points: No gas stations until Leh.
Leh accommodations: Even though there are many hotels and guesthouses in Leh, it’s best to book ahead of time and locate a respectable lodging option that is close to the highway.
Day 5: Rest Day at Leh
The day of rest for your Leh Ladakh bike trip is today. Both you and your bike need to rest after traveling nearly 500 km over three days of non-stop riding. Before continuing on your journey, you would need to acclimatize for at least a day. Use this day to prepare your permits and have your bike inspected for any problems. Now is the time to address any problems you find. In the evening, you can explore the Market and take leisurely strolls through Leh’s streets.
Day 6: Sangam (Confluence of the Indus and Zanskar Rivers), Magnetic Hills, Thikse Monastery, Stakna Monastery, Leh
Take a leisurely ride through Leh and stop at some of the nearby monasteries and other locations. When you visit these monasteries, you’ll get to see some of Ladakh’s serene and tranquil areas. You temporarily lose focus due to the air’s mesmerizing calmness.
Start your journey from 9 to 10 a.m.
Covered distance: 60 to 70 km average altitude: 11,500 ft. In the city, fuel stations are conveniently located. At the intersection of the Srinagar and Manali highways, one of them is present.
Day 7: Leh – Khardung La – Nubra Valley (160 km – 6 hours)
At 18,379 feet, Khardung La was once thought to be the Highest Motorable Road. The incorrect altitude measurement was the subject of numerous arguments. Numerous reports provided evidence that the actual altitude was 17,582 feet. To put an end to all the debates about whether Khardung La was actually the highest motorable road, the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) built a new road to Umling La Pass at 19,300 feet in November 2017. The Nubra River runs through the lovely Nubra Valley, which provides a picturesque view of the valley’s sand dunes.
Begin your journey from 7 to 8 a.m.
Drop in altitude: 11,480 feet to 10,000 feet
At Khardung La Pass, a height of 17,582 feet, is attained. The roads are in reasonable condition up until the South Pullu checkpoint. The last 10 kilometers on either side of Khardung La Pass will put your bike to the test! Ride at your own pace and pay attention to your balance.
Fuel points: Just one fuel station is near Diskit. Remember to refuel and bring extra fuel! A place to stay in Nubra: In Nubra, tent lodging was simple to come by.
Day 8: Nubra Valley – Pangong Lake (200 km – 8 hours)
Pangong Tso, whose name means “Lake,” has become very well-known thanks to the 3 Idiots’ final scene. Since that time, there have been more visitors and travelers than ever. However, if you are in Leh, you must go there! You will always treasure the sight of the lake’s azure waters set against the imposing mountains in the distance.
Start your journey at 7 a.m.
Gain in altitude: 10,00 feet to 13,940 feet;13,940 feet, or the highest point, was at Pangong Lake.
Highway conditions In recent years, the state of the roads has improved. The road that was once dreaded has now been tarred.
Fuel points: Leh via Pangong is the last stop before Leh. Carry additional fuel. The last fuel point is on Diskit. Pangong Tso lodging: It’s best to reserve a hotel or tent well in advance because this location sees a lot of visitors throughout the year.
Day 9: Travel from Pangong Lake to Chang La Pass and Leh ( 180 km, 7 hours )
Go outside the following day and take some photos. If you enjoy taking pictures, you should get to work right away. It’s a good idea to leave Pangong Lake early, especially if you’re going there during a busy season.
Begin your journey no later than 9 a.m.
Gain in altitude: 11,480 feet to 13,940 feet At Chang La Pass, a height of 17,590 feet, was attained.
Highway conditions after 10 to 15 kilometers, the condition of the road from Pangong deteriorates. There are streams close to Chang La and a pitiful road near the pass. Once more, the roads are better close to Sakti village after Chang La. Points for fuel: none
Day 10: Leh – Kargil – Dras (280 km – 8 hours)
The most beautiful views of your entire trip would be yours to see today! Be ready to be astounded by the stunning views and scenery! The War Memorial at Dras should not be overlooked either.
Start at 7 a.m.
Drop in altitude: 11,480 feet to 10,830 feet
Energy points: On the way to Kargil, there are fuel stations in Leh city, but only within the city limits. At Kargil, there are also fuel stations.
A place to stay in Kargil or Dras: At Kargil/Dras, there are a respectable number of hotels and homestays. Book a room in advance if you don’t want to waste time looking for one.
Day 11: Dras – Sonamarg – Srinagar (140 km – 5 hours)
Prepare to be astounded by the beauty of Kashmir, also known as Jannat, which means Heaven. Beautiful mountains, valleys, and fields! You will also pass through the dreaded Zojila Pass today. Since you arrive in Srinagar in the late afternoon, you can reserve a boat house and spend a lovely evening sailing on Dal Lake.
Start at 8 a.m.
Drop in altitude: 10,830 feet to 5300 feet
Maximum elevation attained: 11,650 feet at Zojila Pass.
Road circumstances: It’s a terrible road from Dras to the beginning of Zojila Pass (unless it’s been repaired recently). Only after descending a bit from the Zojila Pass does the road’s condition begin to improve.
Fuel points: From Sonamarg, it is only a short ride to a fuel station.
Day 12: Srinagar – Jammu (267 km – 9 hours)
Today is the last day of the Leh Ladakh bike trip! Depending on your future plans, the ride might go on. If you don’t get started right away, today might be a long day. Around the mountains, you would see some winding, seemingly never-ending roads. It’s also time to explore a few of India’s longest tunnels! Start at 5 a.m. (To beat traffic, and also to avoid night rides) Only a few rocky patches detract from the otherwise excellent condition of the road.
In addition to Srinagar and Jammu, there are fuel stations close to Udhampur. It is preferable to fill up with enough fuel in Srinagar.
Pro Tip: To save time and fuel, skip Patnitop and head instead for Jammu via the Chenani Nashri Tunnel. There are numerous hotels available for lodging.
The Leh Ladakh bike trip is an amazing adventure trip to enjoy your life while learning about the culture and beauty of the places you visit. Experience the beauty of Ladakh on an unforgettable bike trip.