I woke up early morning at Kalpa and saw many other devils were also awake to witness the first rays hit the Kinner Kailash range and capture that golden glow. It was freezing cold and nose was getting numb with the cold breeze blowing in the morning. However, we stood firm at the terrace of Rakpa Regency and wow it was a great sight to watch, the golden glow on Kinner Kailash range.
Day 3 | Kalpa – Geyu – Tabo
Last day while moving from Fagu, we got too much late. So today I had affirmed myself that even if no one moves at decided time, I will move down alone just to set the tone right for rest of the tour. Just because of delay last day, Ejaz bhai, Abdul bhai and all bikers were stuck in Tapri last evening and could not make it to Kalpa where everyone else was staying. So, a firm decision had to be taken and as soon as it clocked time, I rolled down after settling bills with Raj at Rakpa Regency. Thanks to him, he gifted couple of bottles of fresh apple juice from his garden to me 🙂 🙂 … Tapan ji was waiting down at the Reckong Peo diversion for me and as always were right on time. Salute to the spirit and punctuality which helped me as well push things in the group. We continued along the trecherous Hindustan – Tibet Road and today’s destination was Tabo for the overnight stay.
I was running madly on that bad bad road called NH-22 and as we crossed the Jangi Police Checkpost, BOOM, my front tyre burst as one very sharp pointed stone pierced it because I missed to see and dodge it 😥 😥 … It created a big hole in the tyre of the car but not much to worry as I was carrying a spare stepney for the epic Kaza to Gramphu road. So, we moved ahead after fixing the tyre and this delay helped everyone trailing us catch up as well. Then, Tapan ji and Shamsheer in their XUVs lead the way and I joined Pawanji, Vipin and Anuj in the convoy on easy pace. We stopped for breakfast at Puh, Golu Dhabha and had chowmein + paranthas there with Tea. I passed by the route going to Namgia – Shipki La one another time without going up there and try the Shipki La, echoing in my heart there is always a next time 🙁 🙁 … Then, came the Khab bridge, where Sutluj River meets Spiti River. Most of us came out of our cars and took some pictures there before scaling the Ka-zigs all the way to Nako.
Meanwhile, we had got the news that road has been opened at Malling and considering my small car, we decided to go further, cross Malling early so that water does not flood again later in the day and have our food in Chango village. There came the deadly Malling and it was quite smooth with below average running water at that time through it. Took some pictures and started that long, favourite descend to Chango. As we reached Chango, we plucked many fresh apples on the way and ate them. As usual, they were heavenly delicious 😀 😀 … There was some fair going on in Chango, so everyone had closed the shops and no once was around. So, nothing was there to eat there at Chango as well as at Shialkhar village dhabha too. We decided to roll down to Hurling with no choice left and have food up there 😥 😥
Then, we reached Sumdo, entered into Spiti Valley and made the entries in the police register at Sumdo checkpost. I am not sure how my concentration broke, so instead of following the state highway to Tabo – Kaza, I took the NH-22 road to Kaurik, only to realize after couple of KMs 😀 😀 … Others followed me too and then bashed me with some helping verbs as they were empty stomach and I was making fun of them by mis-guiding them 😉 … Only those plucked apples were helping the tummies survive at that time 😀 😀 … We rolled down back to the state highway and then took the diversion to Geyu village to see the 550 year old mummy. The connecting road was fine for first few KMs and then deteriorated like anything for last 2-3 KMs. The car’s air filter seemed full of dust as the car was not accelerating perfectly even on small climbs. We entered the village and comedy of errors happened there 😀
I asked a local villager that is the monastery where that mummy is, open?, to which he replied "Yes" they took it, pointing the finger to another tourist taxi leading us up there. I entered into a very narrow road leading all the way to monastery and soon due to the presence of rocks being laid on that road, I kind of doubted the path and reversed the car all the way back with much difficulty as no one was following us. When we reached there, we found Fortuner was stuck so no one was following us and we were on the right track which was quite horrible for such a small car with humps of stones present there, soon to be crushed and laid 🙁 🙁 … I started again cautiously, scratching the underbelly at couple of humps of stones and finally managed to reach the top somehow safely. After reaching the top, we came to know that monastery was not open and the key present with the caretaker is in the village 🙁 🙁 … It was disappointing not to see the mummy from the close up and we could only get the sights of it through the window only. There was no point going down on such pathetic 1 KM road and get the keys, come up again. All this in empty stomach and light ready to fade out was not a good choice at that moment. Of course, no one would be listening to me even if the idea was thrown up 😀 😀 … So, a bit disappointed, we started back and those going up on the way behind us, we informed them to take the keys from the village and then only go up there. I missed this chance to see the mummy from close up but as hope offers, there is always a next time 🙂 🙂
We resumed the final leg of the journey of the day to Tabo but before that stopped at Hurling and took enough rest as well as food at Hurling dhabha to satisfy the hunger of the noon 😀 😀 … Most of us grouped up there and had chit – chats of the entire day while having food. The food was nice and much recommended in case you want to have food at Hurling. Tabo was not that far from Hurling with less than an hour drive on average condition roads, so there was no hurry. Once, we all had food we started towards Tabo and reached Tabo in no time. Everyone was waiting for me and to the surprise Tsering bhai was there too along with Nawang bhai who will be there with us all along the tour.
It was such a pleasure meeting both Tsering bhai and Nawang bhai. Then, started the trouble of distributing rooms and it was a bit troublesome which did cost me much trouble in the end of the trip as it was step 2 to self humiliation after Kalpa 😀 :D… The dinner was prepared as a buffet for whole group at Kunzum Guest House at Tabo and most of the guest houses up there in Tabo were occupied by our group only. We had to setup our own camps in the lawn of Tashi Khangsar Guest House, run by the operators of Tiger’s Den in Tabo which was near the helipad. We went there, pitched our camps but I was in no mood to stay in the camp because I was feeling a bit feverish and when we came back for dinner at Kunzum Guest House, Nawang bhai insisted to stay at home stay of Bitto bhai who was brother of the owner of Kunzum Guest House. It was very warm and cozy, the night was very relaxing up there. As usual, the locals are ever hospitable in Spiti Valley that takes me up there again and again 🙂 🙂 … Cannot thank them enough.
Late night Abdul bhai, Ejaz bhai, all bikers and the group of Nidhi arrived too in Tabo. It was some relief for us seeing them back, though there was a trouble of again running around without rest and settling them in their respective rooms. All that did cost me my hot dinner that day and I had to suffice on what was left in the end 🙁 🙁 … Also, running here and there to settle others in the their stay options in a bit of fever was also troubling me to some extent and mind was saying I might get hit with AMS. But, then again, the feelings were suppressed behind the smiles I saw around because of DoW Causes in next coming days. However, the whole trip, especially the events post this Mega Meet, were lessons of life which will be covered in some separate article decribing the pain of taking a humble & noble path. Finally, went for a good night sleep at home stay of Bittoo ji. Special Thanks to the Nawang bhai and entire team of Kunzum Guest House including Bitto ji at Tabo who served us such nice food in much organized manner up there for 70 odd adventure junkies 🙂 🙂