Tso Moriri Lake Jeep Safari
Location Covered :Leh - Tso Moriri - Leh
Duration :02 Nights / 03 Days Drive with Overnight Camping
The Rupsu Valley lies to the south east of Ladakh on the road from Manali to Leh, at an altitude ranging from 13,200 to 16,500 feet (4,000 to 5,000 m). The valley is inhabited by a small scattered population of Changpas - nomadic shepherds who also engage in trade and work the caravans between Ladakh, Lahoul and Spiti. The area is rich in wildlife including the kyang (wild ass), red fox and the rare, highly endangered snow leopard. Black-necked cranes and geese flock to the lakeside for breeding during the summer months.
The road goes past the ancient gompas of Shey and Thiksey, via Karu and Upshi, upstream along the true right bank of the Indus river. The drive to Chumathang is via the villages of Likche, Himya, Gaik, Kiara and Skidmang. This takes about six hours. Another 22 kms from Chumathang leads to Mahe bridge. From here drive along a rough dusty track through remote countryside. There are no villages en route except for an occasional nomad (Changpa) settlement of two or three tents. After about 2 hours reach a small beautiful lake called Thazang. Tso Morari lies another half hour's drive further ahead. Camp on the banks of this beautiful lake.
Spend the day exploring the area. Tso Morari or "mountain" lake is situated in the middle of the elevated district of Rupsu. Its name is characteristic of its situation - nestled in the midst of 20,000 foot plus peaks which completely shut the lake in. Legend has it that a woman riding a yak was carried into the lake. At first the yak swam boldly out and the woman (chomo) was delighted. But after a while the animal grew tired and sank deeper in the water. The chomo became frightened and screamed "Ri Ri, Ri Ri" until the yak sank and she drowned. Since then, the lake has been called Chomo-riri. A kilometer ahead is the picturesque village of Korzok consisting of about a hundred families. Visit the gompa set on top of the village. Belonging to the Gelugpa sect, it is about 360 years old and has 35 resident monks. The exterior has been renovated but the main Dukhang or prayer room is intact. Overnight camping.
Retrace the route back to the Ladakh Sarai.