I along with my wife and teenage daughter intend to travel Shimla-Kalpa-Kaza- Nako-Tabo from 16/10/2018 to 24/10/2018 . My question is whether sedan type vehicle is safe for aforesaid itinerary during the period?
For hatchback/sedan taking on Manali – Leh Highway, Spiti Valley and Ladakh, I will say Possible = Yes, Difficult = Yes, at quite a few place:
You will indeed face few tough challenges on the route. The hatchback/sedan will increase the level of every challenge even further, sedan is the worst candidate. My suggestion will be to go via Srinagar route as it will help you feel comfortable with the driving, provide more acclimatization and then once you have done the local Leh-Ladakh, then come back via Manali side. Secondly, since you are in hatch/sedan, then you need to drive with extra care as well. There will be some sections on the Manali – Leh highway in which you might need to sacrifice some scratches on the underbelly. Just make sure you do not bump the engine sump (know it before where it is placed in your car). You need to protect it all around the trip. Thirdly, whenever in doubt do not rush into the section rather park aside and feel the section with your foot, see how other vehicles are crossing it and make a planned route in your mind to cross that section. At the very least do carry Mseal, quick fix, funnel, jerry cans and towing rope with you all the time.
Also, I will strongly suggest that you go through and read my series on Ladakh Self Drive tips at the links below:
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