Leh Ladakh India. Need Advice

Discussion in 'Asia' started by Kodachrome64, Mar 14, 2017.

  1. Kodachrome64

    Kodachrome64 Been here awhile

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    So next year I want to do a bike trip in the Himalayas in India. I am wondering if anyone who has experience in this can advise on things like where best to fly in. Delhi? if so should we rent bikes there and Ride up. Or is better to get other transportation to Manali and Rent a motorcycle there. What is the best route. what cant be missed. I think you need to buy some permits in Leh so does that mean we have to go from Leh to Manali or is it possible to to go from Manali to Leh.

    This will be my first international trip and I know very little about india. So i need all the advice I can get


    Trent
    #1
  2. Shivanshu

    Shivanshu Been here awhile

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    Hey buddy, how many days do you have in hand to explore Leh. The number of days you have will define if you can ride from Delhi or Chandigarh or Manali. Also which month you are thinking to go there.
    There are 2 ways to go to Leh - One is through Manali and other one is through Srinagar.

    Well i will give you a link from my existing group which should help you in clarifying your itenary. Here is the link: https://www.bcmtouring.com/travel-guides/ladakh-travel-guide/index.html

    Feel free to ask anything you want to buddy. I will be more than happy to help you.
    #2
  3. kiwial

    kiwial Allweatherrider

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    Check Sub-forum 'Trip Planning>Asia Pacific' out also. There is quite a bit of information about riding in Ladakh.
    #3
  4. Kodachrome64

    Kodachrome64 Been here awhile

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    So I will be going next year. I am still flexible though12-13 days is about all I can hope for. I can go any month so whatever is best.
    #4
  5. Shivanshu

    Shivanshu Been here awhile

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    The best season to go would be after the month of August. You will not be able to find snow but the greenery and the scenic beauty would be mesmerizing. I am saying that because in mid June, the higher passes will open up subjected to the weather conditions. July - August its the rainy season, and since you will be travelling for the first time, it wont be that comfortable to ride in rain. From September to mid - October you will find all the routes open, and all accommodation available. The only thing is that since this is the prime time to visit this area, you may find a lot of tourist. But for the first time, it would be good.

    And if you do not intend to ride till Leh from Delhi, you can take a direct flight from Delhi to Leh and then rent a bike in Leh and spend your maximum time exploring the places nearby Leh. Only thing is that if you fly would advice you to take rest in Leh on the first day to acclimatize the altitude. And then from 2nd Day or 3rd Day whatever you feel comfortable in then you can start your ride to nearby places.
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  6. Kodachrome64

    Kodachrome64 Been here awhile

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    Ok so now what about self guiding vs going with a tour operator. Normally a guided tour would not be an option for me but in India it is crazy affordable . I guess my fear is that rental royal enfield would be thought to Carry all my luggage and fuel on but on a tour they'd figure that all out. Though I would also love to set my own itinerary. http://www.rideofmylife.in/motorcycle-tours/himalayan-adventure-ladakh#
    I was considering doing these guys manali to Srinagar tour or there pangi valley tour. I like that they have the himalayans as the standard bikes and they will carry your stuff in a support vehicle. What would you guys do?
    #6
  7. Shivanshu

    Shivanshu Been here awhile

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    Well I would tell you the benefits of going for the Guided Tour:

    1. First and most important - you have a local guy so you don't have to worry about language barrier.
    2. You will have the leisure of someone worrying about your extra luggage, accommodation and meals. So you dont have to worry about it.
    3. You will have backup all the time for any break downs, so you don't have to worry about going to into discomfort zone trying to arrange things (though you will always find helpful people, who are ready to help you).
    4. You will be guided from the start to the end.

    Now if you saying that it is crazy affordable, then you can go for it. As you are coming for the very first time, it would be helpful if someone can pick you up from the airport and then drop you back as well after you finish touring. Also you can throw your own itenary to the tour guy and see what he has to charge (amount) you. If you alright with the prices then you can go ahead and do a bit of bargaining as well. About the Royal Enfield, well its a nice bike and lot of luggage carry capacity it has, but since I have never owned them so cant commit to it. And if you do have extra luggage and you think the tout guide is affordable, then I think you should go for it.

    Well if I go to a different country for the first time, and the guided tour is very much affordable for me, I would go for it. So that I get the hang of the place and get an idea what I am looking into, and later on whenever I come next time, I may go solo as till that time I would have had an idea about the places, people and the motorcycles as well.

    The final call is in your hand. If you need any help I am here in Delhi only, you can definitely get in touch with me.
    #7
  8. nineronesix

    nineronesix Adventurer

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    I got back from riding Chandigarh to Leh via the Spiti valley a few weeks ago. Originally I was going to ride with a friend that lives in Delhi that has done the ride several times but things fell through for him so his buddy that is one of the people that made this ride famous took us. There were three of us riding, two from the States plus our guide. Originally we were going to carry all our stuff but ended up having a truck follow us with a mechanic and our bags. This worked out great for a few reasons. The Royal Enfield may have a lot of character but they aren't made well at all and will most likely break down on you. We lost two sets of rear wheel bearings, got a flat, foot peg break off, muffler fell off, had carb problems, and a battery fail. None of it was a problem since we had a mechanic with us that had a bunch of spares. Plus we didn't have to carry any bags, so we had a blast riding. Our guide was amazing, he was a bit of a rock star everywhere we went. We would pull up to a small hut for some tea and a guy would run out and hug him. He set us up in great lodging and we ate well every meal. We ran into many people that had problems with their guide company, one guy was given bread and jam for lunch everyday and all the needed permits were not sorted so he wasn't able to ride a few days. So make sure you vet your guide before going. Even with only 2 paying riders we paid very little for the trip.

    As far as where to start, I would start in Chandigarh and not Manali. Mainly so you can ride through the Spiti valley. The ride from Kaza to Tandi was easily the best day of riding in my life. Once you are on the road between Manali and Leh, the amount of tarmac goes up quite a bit and the number of bikes go up by 100. Our guide (Vir Nakai) posted some pics from our trip on his Instagram account.
    #8
  9. Tikitour

    Tikitour Adventurer

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    Spent June-July riding up there. Had great weather with very few wet days. Altitude and Altitude sickness is something that needs to be taken seriously. I wouldn't forget Diamox....that said, my riding partner didn't suffer at all.
    If you only have a couple of weeks its probably best to fly to Leh or do the Spiti trip, both are awesome. If you start in Delhi you use a few days getting to the good shizz. There is an alternative route to\from Ladakh via Sach Pass which is a blast.
    #9
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  10. Shivanshu

    Shivanshu Been here awhile

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    AMS is serious and specially if you are not used to it. I never took Diamox, the only remedy I use is to drink lot of water and keep eating something at regular intervals.

    Even if you fly to Leh, give yourself atleast 2 days to get accustomed to that altitude. I would say first day just be in Leh, explore the market and other things. Second day get the rent bike and roam around nearby places.
    #10
  11. motopsycho

    motopsycho n00b

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    Would you mind sharing the link to your tour operator's site? I found the guide's IG account but he seemed to be more of a moto travel writer/journo than a guide.

    Thanks!



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    #11
  12. demonio

    demonio Adventurer

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    Earmarking this "for a friend".
    #12
  13. muddysoles

    muddysoles Been here awhile

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    http://helmetstories.com/motorcycle.php

    Here you go!
    #13
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  14. motopsycho

    motopsycho n00b

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    Gracias


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