10 January 2011

Sky to Ground 2: Kargil, Srinagar

Here's part two of Sky to Ground 1, the account of my family holiday in Kashmir.

Leg two of the trip was a drive from Leh to Kargil (where the conflict between India and Pakistan took place in 1999, along the Line of Control). It was a full day's drive through barren mountainous terrains. Along the way we stopped at a monastery (sorry, can't remember its name).

Aaand then we got a flat tire so I took the opportunity to play with rocks and teach the family about shale and cleavage.

That night we stopped at the national hydropower guesthouse in Kargil, right next to a huge river. The next morning we carried on driving through to Srinagar. At this point I should say for not just this leg of the trip, but the whole thing - mountain roads are terrifying. They're so narrow and yet so crowded with trucks, and there are so many times when you're so close to the edge and you look down and it's just a sheer Himalayan drop. Not pleasant.

the road cut that these sheep were jumping off of must've been some 8ft high
On the way into Srinagar, we stopped at Sonamarg, one of many glaciers in a valley, which was to be my first glacier. I'm saving that for part three though :)

For the rest of the time we were in Srinagar, there wasn't so much we could do since there was a strike (I would explain but I'm not remotely qualified to even attempt talking about Kashmiri politics), but we did get to do a boat ride on the Dal lake (I think I just found a lifer for the list while going through those photos :D) and go to the Shalimar and Mughal gardens.

And following our guide's recommendation, we drove out of the city and into the hills to the most beautiful river by the ruins of an old little temple where we sat for a couple of hours on the boulders, soaking up the sun, feet in the water :)

It's mostly because of the pictures that I took so long posting this one. There were a lot to choose from and these posts are anyway more about the photos than the content (I apologise for my appalling story-telling, I don't remember details anymore).

Finally it's done but part three is going to take really long now because it requires a bit of research. But it'll be worth it. It's something I've been wanting to write about for ages. Let's hope I remember the details :)

For my sister's sake I should add - when I copyright the photos with my name, they're not necessarily all taken by me, some of them probably should be accredited to her, Manveena Suri or my mum, Mani Suri. So when I put  my name on them, let's just say it means that they're the work of the Suri family?

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