first view of Pangong

Day 10: 18 August 2013: Part 3: Tangtse to Lukung – The Pangong!

After getting our ILPs checked, we proceed towards our destination for the day – Pangong.

Vistas as we leave Tangtse..

Further to Tangtse

Different shapes and colours…

Carving in stone




Soon we approach the wetlands with horses and other animals grazing in peace..

Mountains around wetlands

Passing stream



A couple of water crossings..

water crossing


A sign announces Pangong is still 26 kms to go…

Distance to Pangong


The road is tarred and mountains are towering.. with various shapes…


withered mountains



Back to pasture


A stream gushes besides the road…

Gushing stream


And the wetland continues…



This is all mine


Vistas are breathtaking…



the road



The grasslands are vast and the animals graze in peace.. undeterred by occasional vehicles passing by

vast grasslands

Grazing in peace


Water in various forms.. streams, fall, nullah..




Meanwhile, the cloud and sun start playing painting the landscape in various colours..












10 More kilometers to Lukung. Yay!!

10 more kms

The stream continues with us..

The stream


… till we reach a small lake.

Lake enroute


Chagar Tso it is! And so we stop.

Chagar Tso

Stopped at Chagar Tso

Colours of Chagar Tso

Changing colours of Chagar Tso

We get ourselves clicked 🙂

I was here shot at Chagar Tso


While we soak in the beauty of the lake, we observe many cars just zip by. It’s just besides the road and still no one stops by. Probably every one is in a tearing hurry to reach the famous Pangong Tso. But ain’t it beautiful in it’s own? It is!!
Beauty of Chagar Tso

Parting shot at Chagar Tso

The peaks around are snow-capped

Peaks at Chagar Tso

After spending some time, we proceed ahead…




Soon the road is engulfed by mounds of sand. Could there be a river flowing? We see bikes swagging.

Sand on the road

And then there is water flowing on the road, so we make a splash.

Water on road on way to Pangong

Making a splash


The sand is hot and so we warm our bums…

Heating Bums


And then we drive ahead..




Cross a dilapidated bridge…

dilapidated bridge on way to Pangong


And then we see a tiny blue spot on the horizon. Could it be Pangong?

Tiny blue spot


Hold on! A board says “No pain, No gain”

No pain, No gain


And just ahead, another signage announces the very first view of Pangong!

first view of Pangong

4 more kilometers to go. So we drive ahead soaking in the colours..





The sun is shining bright, after all it is just 1330 hrs!

Shining bright


We notice a gate kind of structure in distance. The right side is fenced and a red board reads that the area is landmine prone!

Landmine area


Then we see that the gate is towards Phobrang – the road that leads to Marsimik La. Unfortunately we don’t have a 4×4 vehicle, so Marsimik La would have to wait. Some other time perhaps…

Towards Marsimik La


And we approach the army settlement at Lukung. I had read that the best food at Pangong is available only at the army canteen. We hadn’t eaten anything since morning, except for the maggi at Khalsar and it’s good time to indulge in some pet-pooja. So we park our vehicle and take a look around…

Army establishment at Pangong



Distances to some of the easily reachable destinations are marked. Someday I hope to hop on my beast and reach them 🙂

Towards canteen

Towards other destinations


A look around and we also notice a Helipad and a jetty. Probably for patrol boats. But then we also notice civilians taking a ride! Contacts! Everything is possible!!


Jetty at Pangong


When you have a first look at Pangong, you’d not imagine of it’s expanse. For the first time, we also look at the expanse and colour of Pangong Tso and we are awed!

Expanse of Pangong


And we forgot, we were hungry! So we use the toilets for pee-break, wash our hands and face and enter the canteen.

While sitting, I do not fail to notice a kid sleeping blissfully completely oblivious of the surroundings.
Sleeping blissfully

Egg Biryani it is! Accompanied with salad and ample raita. The taste is good and we eat like beggers! Still hungry, we also order some maggi to stuff.

Egg Biryani


Stomach stuffed, it’s time now to search for accommodation. We had decided that we would stay at Man or Merak village. While hopping on the car, I inspect it for any visible damage that could be a cause of any issue. I notice that two screws of the carrier which fastened it to the sides are missing. I inform this to Cheena, however, he says that these screws aren’t what is holding the carrier in place and it’s nothing to be worried about – it won’t cause any issues.

Satisfied, we drive ahead… The time reads 1410 hrs.

Eco Camps at Lukung

Road further ahead

Next: Lukung to Merak and the Pangong!


Total Distance covered: Approx 35 kms

Driving Directions from Tangtse to Lukung: Drive ahead from the Tangtse checkpost barrier to cross the rivulet and take the right fork and then the left fork to go towards Lukung and Pangong Tso. The later right fork goes towards Chusul via Erath. Keep on driving to pass by Muglib and shortly arrive at Chagar Tso to your right. Drive ahead alongside the stream and marshes to arrive to the point from where Pangong is visible for the first time. Drive further and where the road splits, take the right fork (although the left fork seems more logical) to go towards Lukung. The left fork goes towards Phobrang and further Marsimik La. Couple of meters ahead, arrive at the army camp and canteen.