At a distance, about 135 km from Pangong is a big high pass which is named the Chang La pass. On the Leh-Manali highway, rising along the banks of the Indus River. In Karu, the path turns towards Pangong on the left and the straight path goes to Manali. It takes about two-three hours to cover a distance of about forty-five km from Kaoru to Chang La. The beauty of the green Ladakhi fields on the way was unmatched. It is fun to see such light green fields in the brown wasteland. These green colors can also be seen in different shades. It is scary to take any vehicle without suddenly falling into a thousand feet deep ditch from such high mountains.
The beauty of Chang La
Situated at 76 km from Leh, Chang La Pass is encompassed by a snow-capped peak which can be seen from far away. There are also small shops and army camps. Small snowflakes are frozen on the ground, and it is also the first to touch the snow during the journey to Ladakh. The cold also feels tremendous due to the wind, but still, the amount of snow will be much less than expected.
The altitude of Chang La
The height of Khardungla, which is said to be the tallest and is written as 18380 feet, the height of Chang La is written as 17688 feet and it is said to be the third-highest pass in the world, while the height of Tanglang is 17582 feet and it is called the second highest pass. According to these figures, Chang La should be second and Tanglang should be third!
Chang La Ladakh is 5360 m above sea level. (17,590 ft) is the second highest motorable road after Khardung La. It is a good road to enjoy a road trip, but also a bit dangerous due to the steep climb. It remains closed in winter due to snow cover. It is the third-highest transportable pass in the world, connecting the Indus Valley with the Pangong Lake area. After reaching the height of this pass, you can see the views of Pangong Lake spread far and wide while enjoying a good tea.
Legends and Mythologies
It is said that this pass is named Chang La after the name of a Chang la Baba, while the local nomadic tribes are called Changspa. This is the highest pass from Leh to Pangong and it is not good for health to stop for more than twenty-twenty five minutes at such an altitude.
The altitude is also 14000 feet, so in the months of December and January, it freezes, carts also run on the frozen lake, but will people come here at that time and most foreigners come here at the Chang La pass in cars. By the way, it is not always necessary to have snow in Chang La even if it is the cold season.
How to reach Chang La
Tourists can hire a cab, taxi, or rent a bike from Leh and reach there in a few hours. Situated at 76 km from Leh city, Chang La is the main gateway for the Changthang Plateau. People can also catch a bus from Leh to Pangong and it is situated on the route of the lake.
Best time to visit Chang La
Chang La remains closed for 6 months of the year due to road blockage which usually caused by the heavy snowfall. The best time to visit Chang La is during the summer season when the roads get cleared from the snow. While tourists can get the glimpses of snow-clad peaks from Chang La during summers as well.
Places to visit near Chang La
Chang La is situated on the route of Pangong Lake which is one of the famous tourist destinations. Tourists can visit Karu, Shayok Valley, Hemis Monastery, and Chemrey Monasteries are few of the famous places near Chang La.
Some Useful links of Leh Ladakh Tourism: