Welcome to hell: Khaltaro Valley Road is a scary drive

Tucked away in the Gilgit district, on the Northern Areas of Pakistan, the Khaltaro Valley Road is one of the scariest roads ever. Imagine a narrow gravel road, very steep (up to 15%) with horrendous drops on both sides. Welcome to hell! Only the suicidal, the insane, or the paid-to-do-this should ever drive down.

Khaltaro Valley Road

How long is Khaltaro Valley Road?

Located within the Khaltaro Valley, on the northern part of the country, this is some serious driving. The road links the towns of Sassi, Dache (Dassu) and Khaltaro. It is 14.1km (8.7 mi) long.

Is Khaltaro Valley Road dangerous?

It’s one of the scariest roads on Earth. Expect hundreds of turns (with many hairpin turns). Your wheels will be astounded at the wonderful views of the mountains spread out before you! They are terrible for drivers who are prone to vertigo. The journey runs along the Darchan River. Khaltaro is known for its emeralds, aquamarines and fluorite crystals. The road is hindered by the elevation and rugged terrain. A 4WD vehicle and an experienced driver are recommended.

Is Khaltaro Valley Road open?

The road winds its way to the north-western part of the Haramosh massif, a subrange of the Karakoram mountains. It remains covered by snow seven to eight months of the year.

Is Khaltaro Valley Road steep?

The road is pretty steep. It starts at the small town of Sassi, at 1.401m above the sea level, and ends in Khaltaro, at 2.577m above the sea level. The elevation gain is 1.176m and the average gradient is 8.34%, with sections up to 15%.
Road suggested by: Hugh Wilson
Pic: Adnan Alam Awan