An Unforgettable Road to Taglang La Pass

Taglang La is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 5,328m (17,480ft) above sea level, located in the Ladakh region of the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. It’s one of the highest roads in the country.

Taglang La

Can you drive to Taglang La?

The road to the summit is well-paved with occasional stream crossings. It’s called NH-3 (Leh-Manali Highway). It is the highest point of the famous Himalayan road. At the top, there’s a local sign that incorrectly claims ‘the highest road in the world at 17,582 feet,’ which would be 5,359 meters. It is no longer accurate after the construction of several other higher motorable passes. Check here the list of the highest roads in the world.

How long is Taglang La?

The pass is 127 km (78.91 miles) long, running north-south from Upshi to Pang. Even heavy load traffic makes use of that road to get to the town of Leh.

Is Taglang La open?

Set high in the northern part of the country, this road is totally impassable from late October through late June or early July. The weather in summers varies between 10°C to 25°C. Altitude and extreme weather are always factors.

How hard is Taglang La?

The road is an exciting challenge. If you happen to be scared of heights, you should probably stay away from driving through this pass. It is reasonably easy to drive compared to most of the other roads in the area and is frequented by trucks and buses, so you should do just fine in whatever you're driving, oxygen and weather permitting. Oxygen level is half of that at sea level. Remember the supply of oxygen can get dangerously low, and riders and tourists also often fall sick while driving to this pass. Do keep in mind that if you suffer from respiratory or cardiac problems, this trip should be avoided.

How long does it take to drive Taglang La?

To drive the road without stopping will take most people between 2.5 and 3.5 hours. The pass summit, also known as Tanglang La, is marked by hundreds of Buddhistic prayer flags. It is said to be the residence of Changpa herdsman, 'a nomad who is seen herding the cattle and goats every day. The pass has in the past served as a trade route and a religious center. The vegetation here is sparse, but the landscape varies from groups of ashen mountains to scenic plains.
Pic: Yuji Kimura