Leh Tso Moriri Cycling Expedition

Ladakh 9 Days

Difficult

218 KM

MAX 15

MAX ALTITUDE

4850 mts.


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Brief Description

Tso Moriri is a large high altitude lake in Ladakh, on the eastern extension of the Changthang plateau. 26 km long, it is the largest of the big Ladakh lakes entirely in India, surrounded by the gigantic 6600 m Lungser Kangri and Chamser Kangri to the east and the 6100 m Mentok Kangri to the west. The cycle tour starts from Leh and follows the Indus River valley through Upshi, where the route diverges from the Leh - Manali highway, onward through military settlements and small villages at Hymia, Kiari, Chumathang, and Mahe. From Mahe, the road leaves the Indus Valley towards a subsidiary valley, climbing the only pass, Namshang La at 4850 m, and descending to Kiagar Tso and finally to the village of Karzok on the banks of Tso Moriri. The area is one of the largest wetlands in Ladakh, and a paradise for bird watchers, the lake being a breeding ground for bar-headed geese, black-necked crane, brown-headed gulls, and Brahminy ducks.



Itinerary

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Day 1

Arrival in Leh (11,500 ft)

The most convenient way to reach Leh is by Air. But this has to be followed by at least 2 days of acclimatization in Leh before you head to higher altitudes. You can also reach Leh by road but this option requires at least 2-3 days of travel on the road. You will receive the detail of accommodation in leh through an email from us. After reaching leh check into the Guest House/Hotel. Have some rest. Evening can be utilized to explore the Leh market.


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Day 2

Acclimatisation in Leh

Explore the cultural and natural beauty of Leh. This will make you familiar with the town and also help in acclimatize to the weather. Leh is the centre point of Laddakh and also a major town from where all expeditions begin. It is also a culturally rich place. There are dozens of monasteries and ancient temples that you can go around. They are located in and around the town. Enjoy the local cuisines which are major attraction for travellers.


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Day 3

Leh (11,500 ft) to Karu (11,150 ft) - 36 km

Today's ride will be a short and easy one. We will start from Leh and follow the Indus River towards the Manali - Leh highway. We'll pass through the towns of Shey, famous for its palace and Thiksey, with one of the largest gompas in the region. The ride is mostly on flat paved road with a slight downhill gradient and the occasional short climb. We will ride till the Karu military station. Overnight in guest house/home stay.


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Day 4

Karu (11,150 ft) to Hymia (12,150 ft) - 45 km

After starting from Karu, we will stray off the Leh - Manali highway at Upshi and continue along the Indus River. After Upshi, the valley soon narrows into a steep gorge with strange rock formations and cliffs hundred of feet high towering over the Indus. We will ride across a few small villages till Hymia, one of the bigger villages in the valley and the first village with a home stay after Upshi. The ride is on well paved roads with a slight uphill gradient, save for a few short broken sections. Overnight in guest house/home stay in Hymia.


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Day 5

Hymia (12,150 ft) to Kesar (13,000 ft) - 47 km

Today's ride is going to be one of the toughest on this trip. From Hymia, there is a 35 km stretch of broken roads till the Kiari military station. The going will be slow, and you should expect a long day today. The landscape remains dry and sparse and offers little relief from the sun. Once you reach Kiari, the road condition improves and the gradient becomes steeper. It should take another 2-3 hours from Kiari to Kesar, another large village with a home stay and satellite phone. Overnight in guest house / home stay.


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Day 6

Kesar (13,000 ft) to Sumdo (14,450 ft) - 46 km

We will start from Kesar and ride on well paved roads to Mahe, crossing Chumathang on the way, famous for its hot sulphur springs. From Mahe, we will cross the Indus on a bridge and finally leaving the Indus Valley, enter a subsidiary valley. The landscape becomes greener here, with a small, clear blue stream moving next to the road. On the way, you will cross grazing grounds with sheep and goat herds - an unusual sight for Ladakh. The road is paved, though broken in sections. The ride throughout the day is a gradual ascent till Sumdo. Overnight in guest house / home stay.


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Day 7

Sumdo (14,450 ft) to Karzok/Tso Moriri (15,000 ft) via Namshang La (15,900 ft) - 44 km

We will start early from Sumdo today. Shortly after Sumdo, the hairpin climb to Namshang La begins. The gradient is gradual and the road is well paved. As you gain altitude, the landscape becomes dry again. The climb to the pass should take around 3-4 hours. After reaching the pass, you will descend to Kiagar Tso, another beautiful blue lake that will be visible soon after the pass. You will ride along the southern shore of the lake and then make another short climb to a vast plateau. Although there is a tarmac road, there are also multiple tracks from vehicles going off-road. From here, it a descent all the way to Tso Moriri. After about 5 km of descent from this plateau, you will cross a bridge across the nallah flowing to your right. There is a dirt road 15 km from this bridge to the village of Karzok. Although you reach the lake basin after 5 km, it is another 9 km along the western bank to Karzok. The evening will be free to explore the lake and the village. Overnight in guest house / home stay.


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Day 8

Karzok to Leh - 220 km Drive

Today, we will retrace our route and drive along the Indus River back to Leh. Overnight in hotel / guest house.


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Day 9

Departure from Leh

The trip ends today. You cal fly out from Leh, drive to Manali or Srinagar, or choose to stay and travel elsewhere around Ladakh.



Frequently Asked Questions

Pick your question

Best Season: What are the best months to visit this trek?

June - November

About the Trek: Why should I go for this trek?

Leh to Tso Moriri Cycling

The Leh Tso Moriri Cycling expedition follows the Indus River through a narrow gorge, passing through quaint rural settlements and the high altitude pass of Namshang La to reach Tso Moriri, the largest big lake of Ladakh entirely within India, and a paradise for bird watchers.

Packing List: What to pack

Cycling gear

  • A good MTB (Mountain Terrain Biking) - You can also rent it from us
  • Cycling helmet
  • A lock for your cycle
  • Front torch - optional
  • Rear View Mirror - optional

Footwear

  • Cycling shoes - 1
  • Sandals/ flip-flops for camps - 1

On-the-bike Clothing & Accessories

  • Cycling Jersey or Any Dry Fit T-Shirt or Cotton T-Shirts - 2
  • Cycling Shorts - 2
  • Track Pant (Preferably Warm & Quick Dry) - 2
  • T-shirt full sleeves - 2
  • Undergarments - ( 6 to 8 )
  • Rain Coat of Good Quality & light weight - 1
  • Riding Glove - 1 Pair
  • Sweat Band or Bandana
  • Cotton Socks - (6 to 8 pairs)
  • Polaroid U V Sunglasses - 1

Off-the-bike Clothing

  • Warm Jacket (Preferably Waterproof which might be needed while biking in case of exceptionally cold weather) - 1
  • Thermal Inners Upper & Lower - 2
  • Woolen Sweater - 1
  • Woolen Glove – 1 Pair
  • Woolen Cap – 1
  • Big Towel – 1
  • Hand Towels - 2
  • Woolen socks- 1 or 2 pairs

Toiletries

  • Sunscreen lotion (SPF–50 or above), lip balm, toothbrush, toothpaste, hand sanitizer, toilet roll, cold cream, small towel.
  • Anti-rash cream or powder to avoid any rash near groin area from cycling.
  • Anti-fungal cream: Carry an antifungal cream if you are sensitive to sweating and prone to skin irritations around genitals or groin area.
  • For women:
  • Tampons or sanitary napkins,
  • 2-3 zip pouches to dispose off non-biodegradable waste
  • Vaginal wash to avoid any irritation due to lack of bathing.

Miscellaneous

  • Small Day Pack/ Waist Pack -1
  • Hydration pack or water bottle - 1
  • Flashlight/headlamp - 1
  • Pocket knife
  • Basic first-aid kit with emergency numbers
  • Sewing kit
  • Camera - GoPro and Still (optional)

Bike Spares- In case you are not renting from us

  • Bike Reflectors Front & Rear – 1 each
  • Spare Tubes – 4 Nos.
  • Brake Shoes -1 Set
  • Brake cables – 2 Set
  • Gear cables – 1 Set
  • Spokes – 5 Nos
  • Lock (for cycle) – 1 Set
  • Spare Tyre – 1 No.

Packing List: How should I pack my rucksack?

Connectivity: What is the cellular network connectivity for this trek?

There is 4G connectivity for most major networks in Leh, with best network for Airtel and BSNL. You will lose connectivity after Upshi, and will remain without network till you reach Karzok, where there is BSNL network. There are satellite phones at some of the villages en route.

Connectivity: How to Reach the base of the trek & how to go back from the end point?

The trek begins from Leh in Ladakh. The best travel option around Leh is by air.
By air: Jet Airways, GoAir, and Air India provide daily flights from New Delhi to Leh. It is recommended that you make your flight bookings well in advance not only to save on the price but also for a confirmed seat. You can also take an alternate flight route to Srinagar. Fly to Srinagar from Delhi and then drive to Leh from Srinagar. The 10 hour road journey from Srinagar to Leh can be covered by hiring a shared taxi which will cost you around INR 3000-4000. The drive route from Srinagar to Leh is scenic. For coming back, you can either take a direct flight from Leh to New Delhi. Or take the same route via Srinagar. Flights from Srinagar to Delhi are cheaper than Leh-Delhi.
By road: You can take the route from Manali to Leh. Travel from Delhi to Manali by a HRTC Volvo bus. From Manali get a seat in a shared taxi (INR 2500-3500). If you are on a tight budget, There is also a bus from New Delhi to Leh (via Manali) with one side fare of INR 1365. The bus journey begins at 2:30 pm from Delhi ISBT reaching Keylong next day at 1:30 pm. After an overnight halt at Keylong, it reaches Leh the next day. The another route to Leh can be taken through Srinagar. There are shared taxis from Srinagar to Leh available at cost of INR 3000-4000. If you are an ardent biker, you wouldn’t mind taking a bike trip from Delhi to Leh and back.

Nearby attraction: What are the nearby attractions that I can explore?

There are so many enchanting places to visit in Leh-Ladakh. During your acclimatization period, you can roam around the town and visit the monasteries; Diskit Gompa, and Lamayuru Monastery. Drive up to the Magnetic Hill and experience the crazy magnetic phenomenon on the hill. The picturesque Nubra Valley will take your breath away. The green oasis villages, the monasteries, the ruined palaces- Turtuk and Bordang; there is a whole different culture in this place. It is 150 km away from Leh. You can take a shared taxi to this route. How can you leave Ladakh without seeing Pangong Lake, the sapphire blue lake? Also, visit Gurdwara Pathar Sahib and Leh Royal Palace.

Age limit: What is the minimum & maximum age limit?

The minimum age limit is 13 years. However, minors aged between 13 to 17 should be accompanied with their parents or guardians. If you are above the age of 60, kindly carry a medical certificate from your doctor that deem you fit for adventure activities like trekking.

Accommodation type: What will be the accommodation type in this trek?

When you arrive in Leh, your stay will be made at local guest house/hotel. The rooms will be provided on twin or triple sharing basis. You will receive the details of your accommodation through email few days prior the trek. On the expedition, accommodation will be on twin/triple sharing basis in homestays, guesthouses or tents.

Weather conditions: What will the temperatures be like during this trek?

During the day, the temperature will range from 10 to 15 degrees celsius. The nights will get cold dropping the temperature to 0 to -9 degrees celsius. Higher the altitude you gain, the colder it gets.

Miscellaneous : Is there an option to offload my backpack?

Your luggage would be in the support vehicle but you should carry you day pack with you with your nutrition bars, dry fruits, and hydration packs.

Miscellaneous : Who will lead us on the trek?

There will be a Lead cyclist and an expedition leader with you on the expedition.

Miscellaneous : Is it safe for solo woman traveller to trek in Fixed departures?

Absolutely. We have many single women who have traveled with us for this expedition. You would be provided tents/homestays either to share with another woman or in case there is no one to share, then alone. Proper toilet tents are pitched at all camp sites.

Miscellaneous : Will you give certificates on completion of trek?

Yes

Miscellaneous : Are there any local stores/shops from where I can shop trekking necessities?

Leh is the last point where you can buy anything related to the expedition. Once we depart from Leh, you will only find small convenience stores in some villages.

Transport: What time will you drop us at the end point on last day of the trek?

You will be free by around 1700 Hrs on the last day when we would drive back from Karzok. Usually, there are no means to go back from Leh in the evening. So, most people leave from Leh on the next morning. Your hotel stay for that night is also planned by us.

Eligibility: Is this trek good for me?

Are you an avid biker or even a regular cyclist? If yes, then Leh Tso Moriri Cycling Expedition is just the adrenaline boost for you. Leh Tso Moriri Cycling expedition is a 5-day challenge consisting of difficult terrain and uphill riding conditions. Factors like high altitude, difficult passes, and hairpin bends make it completely different from cycling in plains. However, if you are a newbie and still want to take up the challenge, it is advised that you start preparing for the expedition well in advance. You will need to invest in a good bike and follow a strict exercise regimen before the final showdown.

Eligibility: Experience required

  • Should be a regular biker
  • Should have done at least easy routes mountain terrain biking before
  • Should have done challenging treks in case of a novice in mountain terrain biking.

Eligibility: Fitness benchmark

  • Ability to ride on inclined planes for 30 - 35 Kms in a day
  • Ability to hold the breath (in standing position) for 35 - 40 seconds
  • Ability to sustain flat/downhill biking for 3-4 hours at a stretch

Eligibility: Requisite skills

  • Should know how to use a Mountain Terrain Bike Gear shifters, Shock absorber, Seat adjustment, etc.
  • Disassembling & Assembling the bike


Why Bikat

Learning Experience
  • We are an Adventure Learning Organisation first.
  • We want you to not just complete a trek safely but also pick up some basic trekking knowledge and skills along the way.
  • To achieve this we have integrated learning modules into our itineraries.
  • These modules will help you build the necessary skills to progress from trekking to mountaineering over time.
Loyality Programs

Our community is an integral part of us and we take pride in our trekkers and climbers. When you complete at least three days on any trek or expedition with us, you become eligible for our membership and referral programs.

  • Currently we have three levels:
  • Basic Membership
  • Summiteer Membership
  • Leader Membership
Personalized Attention
  • Our group sizes on treks don’t exceed 15 members in order to maintain a healthy Participants : Leader Ratio of 8:1.
  • Over time we have found this number to be optimum when it comes to ensuring personalised attention to every member of our group.
  • On mountaineering expeditions this number is even smaller. Our group sizes are capped at 12 members ensuring a Participants : HAP Ratio of 2:1.
Best Expedition Leaders
  • Our Expedition leaders are advanced mountaineering course qualified, specially trained in rescue procedures from NIM and certified first-aid responders.
  • Even our local guides are certified first-aid responders.
Eco-friendly Practices
  • Group sizes are capped at 15 people.
  • Batch sizes are capped at 250 people per trail per season.
  • We follow a rolling campsite model.
  • We are constantly exploring and introducing new trails to reduce the burden on existing ones.
Safety

For us, a successful summit is not about reaching the highest point of a mountain but about making it safely back to base.

  • To ensure this:
  • Every region of ours is mapped with an emergency evacuation plan.
  • The equipment we use is UIAA certified.
  • Our trek leaders are AMC certified with specialisation in rescue procedures.
  • Our support staffs are trained in first aid as well.

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What's Included

Whats Included

  • All Meals during the expedition ( Starting Lunch on Day 3)
  • Entry Fee,if any (Upto the amount charged for Indian nationals)
  • Guest House / Hotel stay in Leh on Day 1,2 and 8
  • Home stay / guest house on all other days
  • One support vehicle per 6 Participants. 2 Support Vehicles in a batch of 12.
  • Services of a First Aid certified expedition leader & Asst. Leader in group of 12.
  • Certified first aid support & kit includes Oxygen Cylinder.
  • Energy Bars, Dry Fruits & Refreshment during day ride.

Whats Not Included?

  • Bicycle Rent
  • Meals during Hotel Stays
  • Any Kind of Insurance
  • Any expense of personal nature
  • Any expense not specified in the inclusion list

Cancellation Policy

Cash Refund

Cancellations up to 30 days prior to departure date
5% Deduction

Between 30 days to 15 days prior to departure
50% deduction

Less than 15 days of departure
No Cash Refund

Voucher Refund

Cancellations up to 5 days prior to departure date
No Deduction

Cancellations less than 5 days prior to departure
No Refund

Please note
  • Cash refund is applicable only in case of bookings made without using any promotional offer code or vouchers.
  • This is only a brief of cancellation terms. For finer details please refer Detailed Cancellation Policy.

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