To me gorgeous skies and Spiti Valley are synonymous. I first ventured there in the year 2007. My husband, my nephew and I trekked from Langza to Dhankar. I was an Assistant Professor at that time. Then came a lull of seven years. I went to Chandratal last year and I was a professor! Then came 2015 and I went back to the Spiti Valley again, only I had quit my job! I want to go back to Spiti again, that I am sure of, not sure of what will be the status of my job!
However, the status of the roads have not changed in the last eight years or so. There were almost no roads when I went in 2007 and there are almost no roads now. You can see the tire tracks above which go through water! There is more mud and stone than tar on the roads. It makes for a back breaking, neck spraining journey but I am willing to take it every year! I so love the region.
Batal is almost a no man’s land. There are just two small dhabas, in 2007 there was one, the Chandra Dhaba. Just one more dhaba in 8 years, the amount of time it took be to go from an assistant professor to professor to jobless!
There is a road that goes close to Chandratal now. Once again it is a mud track where only one vehicle can pass at a time. It two of them come face to face one has to reverse and find a spot which is wide enough to let the other vehicle pass! However, my major worry was the weather, as last year all I got was the rains and clouds.
This year I was lucky in the end. I did get the Spiti Blues literally in the sky and figuratively once I got back! I strongly recommend a trip to Spiti.
This post is part of Sky Watch Friday. Do check them out.
Everyone should visit Lahaul and Spiti once in their lifetimes. It was my third third trip to the region. I went in 2007 when we trekked through the region and then more recently to Chandratal in 2014. I say that one trip per year to Spiti is a must! I hope you will enjoy my postcards from Lahaul and Spiti
I have gone beyond Rohtang Pass only when I ventured into Ladakh or Spiti. It has never been a destination on its own for me. It used to be a pain with so many vehicles and traffic jams. The recent curb by NGT on the number of vehicles has certainly eased the situation.
The road to Lahaul and Spiti is very beautiful, but at times there is hardly any road! I asked the driver, Ranbir ji, to break for a second while we were crossing this water pond! This is part of the road to Spiti!
Last year my nephew and I went to Chandratal. My nephew, the original brat, Brat 1 took a similar shot. I had to wait for one year to do a repeat performance but I got my shot too. It looks more dangerous that it actually was. But I would still recommend extreme caution if you wish to try this!
It is always a pleasure to reach Chandra Dhaba at Batal because that means lunch and meeting the legendary Chacha and Chachi of the Chandra Dhaba. Their son Tenzing is no running a camp at Chandratal. In this picture we city slickers posed with the beauties of region!
There are many public vehicles plying on the Manali-Batal-Kaza route. Chandratal is a detour from Batal. If you do not have your own vehicle be prepared to reach in whichever way you can. This gentleman from Mumbai took a lift at the roof of our jeep. Ranbir was not too thrilled about it but he agreed as the Chacha and Chachi asked him to take the gentleman along!
This year the tents have been pushed back further from the lake but I am not complaining. I want the lake to be there for Chhavi and her children too! And the blue you see in the sky is the Spiti Blue, no filter has been used in any of these pictures! Almost all the pictures here are straight from the camera!
The vehicles go quite close to Chandratal but after a point they have to be parked. The walk to the lake is equally beautiful. The horses were enjoying their grass.
I was not too happy about the cloud cover in the sky. I wanted the blazing blue skies that I see in other pictures. But the rain gods were not listening to me yet!
I know I should be grateful for standing at such an awesome place! But I wanted the typical Spiti Blue! Clouds denied me that for a second year in a row!
Last year I ventured only up to Chandratal but this year I was headed further into Spiti. This was a last minute personal trip that I did with my trusted guide Ramakant Sharma. There is much more to the trip that these initial pictures! I am so happy that I could do this trip!
I started my India travel blog, Travel Tales from India in 2005. In 2016 I realized Travel Tales from India and Abroad better reflected my writings. I love to walk and ride in metros around the world. I have not been everywhere, I am not even close, but it is on my list. I also quit my job as a professor in 2015, it was a happening year! I did a Ph.D. from IIT Kanpur ages ago!
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