Living inside cemented structures for all our lives, our thinking of clear water is only limited to RO purified water. But how many people get to see naturally purified, crystal clear water in their daily lives? Pangong Tso Lake in Ladakh is one such nature’s craftsmanship, that needs no RO purification, its a mark of purity itself.
This 100 Kilometers large lake, is the largest Brackish lake in Asia, and also spreads across the borders of China and India. The lake is like a still portrait, as if some artist had carved it in between the mountains.
No matter how sunny it is, it’s never sunny enough for the lake. As you move towards the lake, your teeth will start cluttering. The water looks tempting and you would want to touch it, but in reality you would take out your finger as soon as you touch the water. You have to be ‘freeze tolerant’ to play with the water.
There is a famous ‘3 Idiot’ spot in the lake. This was the portion is which Kareena Kapoor Khan, shot the last scene of the movie. Honestly, I salute her for riding a bike, wearing a Ghagra, in that cold temperature. Even the locals don’t roam around the lake without at least wearing a Jacket, so claps for Kareena!
Apart from all the prettiness, the lake has also seen a lot of ugly wars. The lake lies in the disputed territory and the Line of actual control passes through the lake. Both the nation’s army have their patrol tanks guarding their area of the lake quite frequently, the eastern part of the lake lies in Tibet. Also, the mountains surrounding the lake have as many bunkers as you can spot. The Locals are allowed up-to a certain point of the lake, after which only the Military vehicles are permitted, obviously due to security reasons.
Since Ladakh is a flourishing place for tourism nowadays, you can see various tent houses and wood houses lined up, tourists are flooding to stay there- that’s the power of the Pangong Tso Lake. Also, boating facility is available only during the Tourist season- which is supposedly from end of May-end of July. Basically the locals call it a Tourist season when the valley is flowering. All the rates, whether it is for boating or shopping items, go higher and higher when the tourist season starts.
Except for the tourist season, there is no other activity in the lake. One of the main reason that has saved the lake from being destroyed by over excited humans is that, its cold. So you can’t do swimming, bathing, washing…etc, which helps the lake remain clean.
Coming to the name of the lake; Pangong Tso is the Tibetan word for ‘High grassland lake’, so that’s how it got it’s name. So whenever you visit the valley, you know you have to travel five hours from the city to get a glimpse of the nature’s gift- Pangong Lake. Don’t worry, the journey is as peaceful as the lake.