Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe 

Tripoto
21st Nov 2017
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

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In the last 2 days of Sham(Western) Trek, we plan to go through two unique villages - Temisgam and Tar. Temisgam is touched by modern facilities like wifi and on contrary Tar started getting solar electricity a few year ago. The trekking to the village is like walking through the paint book of nature.

Stanzin(my guide) also mentioned that these villages are closely surrounded by mountain peaks and hence, there are good chances of spotting wildlife.

We started our climb to cross the first pass. First we spotted a mountain hare, which went as far as it could from us.

Mountain Hare

Photo of Hemis Shukpachan by Soumik Neogi

After some time we reached the starting point of this trek which looked beautiful with the prayer flags. This marks the end of the village from this side, and start from the other side.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

From a distance, the mountain to be crossed looked like a painting of nature. These mountains are mineral rich

The Highest point of the pass is the mountain on rightmost side

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Initial part of the road had blasting debris(as roads were being constructed from Hemis to Temisgam) and we wanted to cross it quickly.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

The view of the mountains on the other side was so grand that it left a feeling of both fear and pure joy. Until i saw this place i could never imagine the existence of such a place.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Soon after, i spotted a group of young Ibex near the top of the hill. The Ibex is a master climber and ofter run on near vertical cliffs to get away from predators. The young ones are super comfortable on the cliffs and are trying to find their food.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Then we realized that it is a large group with some 7-8 young Ibex.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

After reaching the top of the mountain, Stanzin discovered that the prayer flags were broken. He immediately started fixing it. There is so much to learn from the attitude of people here. They genuinly care about every thing around them and i guess that makes them happy of everything that they do. So these people are simply happy without much of electronics and product cravings.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

The flags were now flying high above the mountain and looked like a place that has healing powers.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

We now climbed down through the mountains and the setting sun made the land glow.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Before reaching Temisgam, we went through the village named "Ang". A picteresque village and straight out of a dream.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

On our way down a school bus gave us a lift to Temisgam.

Photo of Temisgam by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Temisgam by Soumik Neogi

After staying at Mr Namgyal's place, next morning we planned to visit the hidden water tunnel that was discovered recently.

The tunnel was discovered by a local who was digging the place for a different reason. Looking at the shine from the water below, he initially thought it was precious and dug deeper to finally find the water tunnel. It seems the tunnel was used in the past as a water reserve during winter. The water in winter was warm and Stanzin told me it's cold during summer. Amazing natural storage.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

The tunnel is right at the foot of Temisgam monastery. The current Monastery replaced the ancient palace that stood there.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

The old palace, now converted to Monastery

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Ruined watch tower

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

The monastery inside the palace is ancient and has beautiful wooden architecture and wall paintings.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

The view from the top was amazing.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

After the monastery, we headed towards the village of Tar. This village can only be accessed by foot and seems like walking through canyon.

Before we reach the canyon, we cross the river Indus through a foot bridge and the entire walk was beautiful.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

The road later is narrow and there are chances of falling rocks.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Walking through the rocks i realised that this was one of the coldest places i have been to. This created beautiful ice formations along the way.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Hospitality at Tar was unparalled and i would not hesitate to say that the food was the best of all meals i had during my stay.

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Thukpa using mountain herbs

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Fresh baked break, tastes better than a lot of cakes

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

We left Tar the next morning and visited Alchi Monastery on the way, before returning to Likir. The Ancient architecture of the monastery is still preserved and you are not allowed to take photos inside.

On the way to Alchi

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

On the way to Alchi

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

It explains that the tree grew up from actual walking stick of Rinpoche

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

A special art form used during festivals - Created using sand

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi
Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Walls inside Alchi Monastery - Photos from Leh palace

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

Walls inside Alchi Monastery - Photos from Leh palace

Photo of Villages or a dream - Ladakh villages that you have to visit to believe by Soumik Neogi

After returning to Likir in the evening, it felt like i came back home. I stayed at Stanzin's place for the rest of my stay in Ladakh. During the next few days, Stanzin gave me some flavor of rock climbing and the first snowfall of Likir happened the day before i left. It was amazing. More on the next blog.

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