Himalayan Heights: Aug 28 to Sep 9 2023

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Oct 2, 2007
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Sierck-Les-Bains, France, (Formerly Benoni, SA)
Triumph 800 XC
Last year (2022) in August, I was on vacation with two old schoolmates; Julian and Mike, and we got to talking about a ride. Mike already had the plan.
Julian, Mike Derek (me).

Ride Expeditions is an adventure company who organizes and runs adventure rides all over the world. Mike persuaded Jules and I to go on a ride called Himalayan Heights, where we would do a 12-day ride around Northern India (Not Nepal!) and follow some epic rides into some of the highest mountain passes on the planet.
We would fly into Delhi, then overland by car to Shimla, where we would meet our Royal Enfield Scram bikes.

The Itinerary:
Day 1: Arrive in Delhi
Day 2: Delhi - Shimla transfer
Day 3: Shimla - Shoja 160km
Day 4: Shoja - Manali 120km
Day 5: Manali - Keylong 110km
Day 6: Keylong - Sarchu 100km
Day 7: Sarchu - Leh 260km
Day 8: Leh - Rest Day or ride out to Alchi Monastery
Day 9: Leh - Pangong Lake 175km
Day 10: Pangong Lake - Nubra Valley 190km
Day 11: Nubra - Turtuk - Nubra 165km
Day 12: Nubra Valley - Leh 130km
Day 13: Flight from Leh to Delhi (Own expense)

Looking at the map you can see some broken lines, indicating disputed territory between India and Pakistan in the province of Ladakh. This area is predominantly Buddhist, but Muslims, Hindus and Christians are also found.
An overriding Military presence is also to be seen in Ladakh. They also have their own language: Ladakhi, although Hindi is the official language and is spoken by everyone.
Ladakh and Kashmir is also home to a large population of Nepalese refugees who fled after the Chinese takeover of Nepal some 20 years ago.

South of Ladakh is Himachal Pradesh, which is the green forest-clad foothills of the Himalayas. Impressive and beautiful in their own right and awe-inspiring at every bend in the winding roads leading up to Shimla and beyond.

So, slowly, but surely, we made our plans, bought air tickets, and acquired the gear we thought would be necessary for such a ride... with some exceptions...