If you are an avid biker then the Leh Ladakh on bike trip should be on your must do list! It is an adventure of a lifetime! The landscape, the views, the challenges that one faces on this trip are what make it so memorable. Traversing through frozen streams and passes on high altitude, plains that are studded with gorgeous locations to stop and stare in awe. Mountain lakes that make you never want to go back to the city. The rural and remote setting of the Leh Ladakh region leaves you spellbound and wanting for more. The beauty of the Himalayas, the Karakoram Range and the numerous monasteries in between will take your breath away.
The trip from Delhi to Leh is 1242 Km. The trip route can be planned in such a manner that one can undertake the trip from Delhi to Ladakh via Manali, this route is open from June till October. The other route one can take is from Delhi to Ladakh via Srinagar. This route is open from April to October and is ideal for Ladakh on bike
It is usually recommended that you start off the first leg of the trip from Delhi continue on to Srinagar then Sonamarg, Kargil, Lamayuru and finally onto Leh.
Once you touch Leh, the second leg of the journey kicks in which takes your from Pangong through to Nubra, Sarchu and the Leh- Manali highway.
The most pleasant time to undertake this biking tour of Leh Ladakh is from June uptill October. Post that time period it gets cold and the conditions are not conducive to bike through that region. The temperature and the terrain both become unfriendly.
Trip Cost for going to Ladakh on bike:
The total trip cost could come anywhere between 35 – 50,000 INR depending on the bike you choose, your gears and your stay included. Also depends on how many days you wish to take to cover this trip. Usual time that people take for a round trip is about 10-12 days.
Be prepared thoroughly though. This is not an easy trip by any means. You will be biking at extreme heights and the altitude will go beyond 17,000 feet above sea level. One needs to take precautions and be prepared. Your trip preparation should start off a few months in advance. You need to be fit and healthy to go on the trip yourself first and foremost.
Nevertheless, the main aspect of the trip is keeping a right attitude and having endurance and perseverance. The adventure is awaiting you!
Tips & do’s and dont’s & Trip Preparation
- Ensure that your bike is sturdy. Opt for one that is 200 CC + with tubeless tires. Since the terrain is tough and rough, you need to make sure that your bike can take it.
- Keep an air pump and your toolkit on you for sure, in case of sudden breakdowns it will come in handy.
- You need to carry petrol in bottles. There are going to be certain stretches where petrol pumps will be far and few in between. Given the terrain, your bike’s mileage will not be great. To ensure that you are not stranded keep enough spare fuel on you.
- Travel light but pack smart. Carry rain gear so that you are not caught off guard in the rains.
- Wear protective biking gear. Like mentioned the terrain is rough, you do not want to get harmed in any way.
- It is recommended that you wear bright colored clothes. There are heavy vehicles that ply those routes; you need to ensure that you are visible to them.
- Carry enough portable food and water. To stay full and hydrated.
- Carry an extra set of clothes of course.
- Keep a map on you. There are chances that mobile signals might dip and you will be unsure of your route at that time
- Keep your hands and ears warm. Use gloves and mufflers. Don’t try and dip your feet in the cold streams along the way, this will contribute to you falling ill severely as you would not be acclimatized to the harsh weather of the mountain terrain. Ladakh on bike is not as easy as it seems.
- Your biggest enemy in terms of health issues is the Acute Mountain Sickness syndrome. As you are going to be plying the world’s highest motorable highway, known to be 17,582 feet above sea level, your body is bound to react. It has been taken out of its natural habitat and plunged into an alien habitat. You might experience a headache, dizziness, shortness of breath, vomiting tendency, and extreme fatigue.
- Get prescribed medicines from a doctor to cover any specific ailment that you might have and that would have a tendency to get aggravated during the trip. Also get medicines to cover Acute Mountain Sickness.
- Try not to smoke or drink during your road trip. It will alter your perceptions and make it difficult for you to focus on the road ahead.
- Take regular stops and halts on the way up. Your body will require those breaks so that it can adjust to the height.
- You need to ensure that you have the ILP – Inner Line Permit for Leh.
- Note that there are few ATM’s on the way. Keep enough cash on you.
And don’t forget to get a high-quality travel bag for you. I would recommend getting your hands on the Urban Tribe’s new Tourer Travel bag.
Have fun, stay safe and make memories for a lifetime!
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