The cold was enough to freeze even a moving water body. We were letting out fogged breaths even during daytime; the temperature was below zero even during daytime! We knew we had entered Spiti Valley. Then after a short while, we continued on our journey towards Gue, our stay for the night.
We encountered the first setback of the trip as our car skidded on the ice. The sun had already gone down by the time this incident took place, leaving us stranded in the middle of a cold barren desert. Must have been around 6 pm I guess. The chill started penetrating our warm layers and even our very bones when we made the mistake of getting out of the car. No matter how hard we tried, our car simple refused to climb on the black ice.
It was then that we finally decided to spike the tires. Mr Pandey and Mr Vashisht took charge as we pointed a torch at the ongoing operation. After numbing our fingers for quite some time, the work was done. We were told that the tires would skid no more.
Thanking God, one of my teammates Nishant, checked his iPhone for the time. It showed 9:30! That means a good four hours had passed trying to fix the tyre but it certainly didn't feel like it. I took out my own phone to confirm and found the time to be 7:00.
When Nishant finally decided to check his location, it showed Beijing, China! We were left perplexed. It was then that our Mr Pandey told us that Gue was just a few kilometres away from the Indo China border. The iPhone was actually picking up the Chinese time!
Subsequently we reached Gue in 20 minutes and were greeted by a warm welcome from our host, Mr Sonam. A much needed gesture in the cold environment! We retired for the night after having our dinner.