When to go, what to bring and expect

Depending on how far you want to go, distance wise but also physically wise, you must bring the adapted gear.

In the summer months, the weather can get quite sunny and the temperatures pleasant, but it will still be a little chilly at night or when the wind picks up. Sun cream can come in handy.

In the winter months, well, only the experts go there, so you’ll know what to bring.

It normally never rains in the summer, but this year (2015), villagers all told us they were amazed because of the light showers we were getting every evening.

Indeed, this was bad news, as we later learned from other’s experiences, as the river fill up from the rain, as well as the glaciers melting (that’s normal), turning┬áthe treks into difficult and even sometimes dangerous situations.

Roads are often blocked, more so because of the rain, so organize your flight tickets accordingly.

If you want to motorbike, be prepared for some rough, tiring roads. Be fully covered, as it gets really cold climbing up the passes, and bring extra gas tanks.

Internet seems to be quite available, but it actually isn’t. We actually spent 3 weeks without any, people telling us systematically that it wasn’t working at the time. We got:

  • “not working since 5 days” (in Leh, and we luckily managed to find our friends in town, as we had planned to set a rendez-vous point by e-mail), and still not working after 5┬ádays, when we came back from our trip to Nubra Valley
  • “worked yesterday, will come back anytime” (in Lamayuru, never did)
  • working upon arrival, but not anymore after we decided to have something to eat before browsing, and never again (in Kargil)

And mobile network works quite well if… you buy the correct sim card, which is BSNL, not Airtel, which only works in Leh and Srinagar. I’ll let you find out the fight it is to get yourself a data plan.

As for the fun part, electricity is very sketchy, even in big cities as in Leh, and is on schedule in smaller cities, usually from perhaps one hour before sunset until maybe 10 or 12pm.

But all this makes it an even restful and back to the roots trip!

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