Dare to drive the dangerous Chattarga La road
Chattarga La is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 3.045m (9,990ft) above the sea level, located in the union territory of Jammu and Kashmir, India.
The road to the summit is unpaved. A motorcycle or a vehicle with a higher ground clearance is essential. The road to the summit is the challenging Basholi-Bhaderwah road. The route is dangerous. Not recommended to newbies. Along the way you’ll have to deal with some dangerous dropoffs. The road is metalled between Basholi and Bani. After Bani the road starts to degrade and it slowly disintegrates into a rough trail after Sarthal.
The pass is 164 km (101 mile) long and runs south-north from Basholi (in Kathua district) and Bhaderwah, a town in the Doda district. Allow more than 6h to complete drive due its conditions. It is closed between December and April due to heavy snowfall. Be careful: this road is not for the sissies. One mistake can have consequences. The drive is pretty narrow and steep in parts, so extreme caution is required. Starting from Bhaderwah, the ascent is 25,11 km long. Over this distance, the average gradient is 5% with a challenging 13,6% maximum gradient.
If you're afraid of heights, it's probably best to keep your eyes forward. The route offers a breathtaking natural beauty. It’s a difficult road, with uncountable turns and twists. The road is plagued by landslides, and for that reason a four-wheel drive is highly recommended. No fuel station so make sure that you carry enough fuel. There are many treks along the way: Seven Falls, Kailash kund and many other unexplored.
Pic: Harjeet Singh
Road suggested by: Jorge Manuel Gómez Sánchez