TREKS-    Leh to Rudok

 

 

Traversing Nostalgia – historic routes:  

 

Another nostalgic route that was popular till the early 1950s. Rudok, in Western Tibet, was considered more a part of Ladakh than Tibet till 1850. Its trading status gone China has converted it into an important military base. It is linked by a good road to Lhasa and to Kashgar on the Chinese side. Within India there's   a motorable road till Miarsmik La. Those who have been to Pangong Tso will find a part of this route familiar and the history interesting. 

 

 

 

Abbreviations:

D.B.- Govt. Dak Bungalow with servants & board.

B- Road Bungalow, rest house or baradiri without servant or board.

F.B.- Forest Bungalow.

C.- Caravan Serai for Native Travellers.

E.- Encamping Ground.

P.O.- Post Offcie.

T.O.- Telegraph Office.

S.- Supplies or russud for an ordinary party of travelers.

G.- Grass for grazing for transport animals.

F.- Firewood or other fuel.

W.- Water for drinking.

M.P.- mountain Pass.

L.- Lake.

T.- Transport coolies, ponies, mules or yaks available for an ordinary party of travelers.

H.- Hot Spring.

 

 

 

Only minor editing done like changing miles into kms, feet into metres, and a few spellings into recognizable ones of today.

 

 

No. of Marches

Stages

Kms

Kms

Nature of Route

Main Valleys & mountain passes

River crossing and lakes

ASL in meters & feet

Supplies & Transport at Stages

Remarks

 

 

Camp to camp

Total

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leh

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

….

  0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Road good and passable for laden animals

Up Indus valley

…..

11350' or 3460 m

S.F.G.W. & T abundant.

Large town and fort. Capital of Ladakh. Palace of Gyalpo Raja. Residence of Wazir and British Joint Commissioner.

1

Tikse

21

21

 

38

 

Up Sarkti valley

 

 

"  "

Village and monastery

2

Chimre

26

46

 

 

 

 

S.F.G. W. & T. moderate

" "

 

Sarkti

 

56

Very steep ascent from Sarkti to Zingral

 

 

 

 

Large village, well cultivated

3

Zingral

19

62

 

 

 

 

S & T nil, F, G, W available

Halting Place

 

 

 

70

Ascent to, & descent from, pass easy

Chang la.

Down Chang la's ravine, up Durbug ravine

 

 

 

 

4

Durbug

24

88

Road on both banks of Durgul (Durbug) river

 

 

 

S & T nil, F, G, W procurable

Small village, well cultivated

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5

Tankse

11

99

From Tankse, road up valley, which narrows

 

Cross Durgul river several times

 

S.F.G.W. & T. plentiful

Small village, central store depot for caravans to Yarkand and Tibet

 

Muglib

 

110

to a gorge and then opens out by Muglib, crosses grassy swamp & ascends 3 kms among rocky boulders…….

Up Pazar valley

 

 

 

Hamlet

 

{From here

 

 

two roads to

Rudok. One N

& one S of

 

Pangong

Tso}

6

Chakar Talao

22

122

…..From here road continues up valley to the plain

 

 

 

S& T nil, F, G, & W scanty

Shallow pond, DRY [not NOW] in summer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7

Lukung

11

133

at end of Pangong Tso

Up Loonkur valley

 

14,130' or 4308 m

" " " "

3 kms, NW end of Pamngong Tso. W salt

8

Chagra

 

13

146

Road good all the way to the foot of MS pass

 

 

15090' or 4601 m

S.T. nil, F scanty, G.W. plentiful

Pasture ground

9

Charkhang

13

159

Gradual ascent to summit,

 

 

 

 

Southern foot of the pass

 

 

 

160

whence road turns E over

Miarsmik La

 

18420' or 5616 m

S.T. nil, F.G.W. procurable

 

 

 

 

166

elevated ground called Kieu La into the

Down Kieu valley

 

 

 

 

10

Pangur Gongma

18

177

Head of the Kieu valley, which drains

Kim stream is difficult to

 

17670' or 5387 m

  S.T. nil, F.G.W. available

Eastern foot of the pass

 

Ningri

 

 

down into the Pangong Lake

Cross in summer

 

16250' or 4954 m

S.T. nil, F.G.W. scanty

 

11

Niagzu

21

197

Good road up this branch valley to head,

Up Tso Kiok valley

 

15390' or 4692 m

S.T. nil, F.G.W. available

Junction of 3 valleys

12

Kaisarpo

19

216

where it

 

 

16000' or 4878 m

" " "

Halting place

 

 

 

229

crosses 2 passes

Tso Kiok La

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

230

& descends into the Tal valley

Demjor La & down Tal valley

 

17700' or 5396 m

 

 

13

Gonu

19

235

Road along river bed & then crosses Salam spur

 

 

 

S.T. nil, F.G.W. scanty

Frontier post

14

Chuzan

21

256

Road fair over the pass and

Up ravine

Springs

15840' or 4829 m

S.T. nil, F.G.available, W. springs

Grassy plain

 

 

 

266

down the ravine

Dingo La, down Toba Ruberg

 

 

 

 

15

Pal

32

288

Stony road along northern shore of two fresh water lakes, Tso Rum and Tso Nyak

ravine

 

 

"  "  "

On northern shore of Pangon Tso

16

Dobo Nakpo

13

301

 

 

 

14020' or 4274 m

S.T. nil, F.G.W. scanty

On the northern bank of Tso Rum

17

Noh

30

331

 

 

Naichu Lumba

 

" " "

On northern bank of Tso Nyak, small village of 25 houses. Today a motorable road on the Chinese side.

18

RUDOK

32

363

 

 

 

 

" " "

Village & chief place of Rudok- then. Today a teeming military town and missile base

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OR

ALONG

 

THE

WESTERN & SOUTHERN SHORE

of PANGONG TSO

64 kms long &

3 to 6 kms wide

13,936' or 4249 m

Salt water

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7

Lukung

 

133

Fair road but stony along the southern margin

 

 

14130' or 4308 m

S.T. nil, F.G. scanty

3 kms from NW end of Pangong Tso to the left

 

Spanmik

 

144

of the Pangong Tso, which is

 

 

 

 

 

8

Mang sth bank

22

156

quite open till Thakung

 

 

 

 

Hamlet

 

Mirak

 

166

 

 

 

 

 

Small village

9

Kakstet

Sth bank

16

172

 

 

 

14000' or 4268 m

S.T.nil, F.G.W. scanty

Hamlet

10

 

Thakung

11

183

Here the mountain spurs come down to P Tso and

 

Saka Lungma

 

 

 

11

Yula

24

207

the road along the shore is winding and rough

 

Yula ravine

 

S.T. nil, F.G.W. precarious

 

12

Aot south bank

24

231

At east end of P Tso, which is connected with the

 

Pangong ford

 

S.T.nil, F.G.W. plentiful

Pasture ground, about 5 kms N. W., is the ruined fort of Khurnak

13

Dal north bank

19

250

Nyak Tso by a long narrow channel fordable at Aot *. A good

 

Dal Lumba

 

" " "

Camping ground

14

Pal north bank

34

284

but stony road continues along northern shore of Nyak Tso to Pal, & thence along northern shore of 2 small lakes:

 

Pal Lumba

 

 

 

15

Noh

32

316

Rum Tso and Nyak Tso to Noh

 

Naichu Lumba

 

S.T. nil, F.G.W. scanty

Small vlg og 25 houses

16

RUDOK

32

348

Rudok is on the S side of the latter tso.

 

 

 

" " "

Chief place of Rudok

From Noh, there is a route northwards up the Naichu valley over the Kiang La, by the Mang Tza lake, 16,600' or , over an extensive elevated plateau 16,880', and the Diwan pass by the Ghubolik Lake and the sulphur mine at 16,960' or to Polu 8430' or and Kiria in Khotan 4580' or in length.

Col. Trotter write that according to Mr. Moorcroft, this was part of an ancient highway from Rohilkand northwards to Turkistan starting from najibabad (whence a railway line has just been made 15 miles or   kms to Kotdwara at the foot of the hills) 210 miles long to the Niti pass 16,676' or  , thence crossing the Satluj river at Totling 12,200' or   , where there is an ancient iron suspensiopn bridge, and crossing the Bogo la 19,210' or  into the Indus valley at gartok 14,240' or , it follows this river to Demchok and crosses the Jara pass northwards to Rudok and Noh about 440 kms.

From Noh to Kiria in Khotan is 549 kms. From Kiria to Kargalik 432 kms and from Kargalik to Yarkand 68 kms- Total 1824 kms.

I was first in Pangong Tso in October 1972. At that time no one could tell me much about the mountain ranges on eastern and northern and southern side of its shores. In all I have been to Pangong Tso 11 times and even now there are incorrect answers. Especially about its length, which is not 140 kms. It is just 64 kms long. At Khurnak Fort is where the border is supposed to be.


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