Tso Moriri is one of the most beautiful lakes in India. My other favorite lake is Pangong Lake which is also in Ladakh.


I was fortunate to visit the lake during my Photography Tours to Ladakh


Though less popular than Pangong Lake, it's more untouched and raw. Also, being located at an altitude of 4522 meters (14840 feet), it is difficult for the body due to less oxygen. 

This is a great place to watch the Bar Headed Geese, the highest-flying migratory birds which come all the way from Central Asia crossing the Mount Everest and breed here. Tso Morriri is also a great place to shoot the Milky Way and the stars at night 

Pangong to Tso Morriri


A lot of travelers go from Pangong to Tso Morriri. The distance is 366 km and take a full day to go.

We actually do it this way in our Ladakh Photography Tour. On Day 5 we travel from Pangong lake to Hanle which is 162kms and on Day 6 Hanle to Tso Morriri 159 km. 

The day after, we travel from Tso Morriri to Leh which is 220kms. We join the Manali Leh highway after some time. The road is great.


Tso Moriri Or Pangong Lake?


Well, that's a difficult question. 


If you are coming to Ladakh for the first time and have to choose one of them, I will advise you, Pangong Tso. It is easier in terms of accessibility and altitude and equally beautiful. If you have already seen Pangong, then you must go to Tso Morriri, you will love it. 


Tso Moriri Weather


The weather in Tso Morriri is harsh. During the summer, the temperatures will range from 25 degrees to zero degrees, and during winter, it can drop to 30 degrees below zero.

Apart from that, most of the time, it's very windy. That makes life very difficult. Once, after going all the way there, we could barely get down from our vehicle and had to go back because of strong winds.


Tso Morriri Hotels


Tsomoriri Hotel Lake View is the best place to stay. You can shoot the stars from your hotel window and go to sleep. 

The rent is Rs.4500/- per day which might be on the higher side for some. 


Tsomoriri Camp And Resort is a more economical option. These are camps and will be colder at night. 

 

The best part of the place is that it is frequented by fewer people. As it is a little difficult to access the place, most of the tourists don't visit it. Also, the hotels and camps build more responsibly here away from the banks of the lake, unlike Pangong.

If you are visiting the place from Leh, you have to pas Shey, Thiksey, Stakna. Even Hemis is a small detour and can be covered on the same trip while going or coming back.

We follow the Leh Manali highway till Upshi and then take a detour. We later pass the Chumathang region and the Kyagar Tso lake and finally the Tso Moriri lake.

On the way, you will see a lot of Marmots, the cute animals of the squirrel family. As you approach the lake, you will find a lot of migratory birds, mainly the black-necked cranes and bar-headed geese.

Next to the lake, is the Korzok village, where you will find some accommodation and food. There is also a 300-year-old monastery here.

This area is inhabited by the Changpa nomads who generally move from place to place around the Chumathang region grazing and rearing their pashmina goats.

You will get the best views of the lake from the viewpoint far away from the village on the banks of the lake.

This is my favorite place for shooting the Milky Way and making star trails.

The best time to shoot the lake is in the evening and to continue till night. Make sure you carry enough warm clothing to keep yourself warm. It gets really cold after sunset.

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Tips for photographers

Keep yourself warm and hydrated. Drink at least 3 litres of water every day. Lack of water is one big reason for AMS or mountain sickness.
Carry a sturdy tripod.
Plan your time based on the moon's position.


Thanksgiving

Thanks to all the participants in my Photography tour to Ladakh. We really had a great time.


This post is written by Ssaurabh A Chatterjee. He is a travel photographer and a photography trainer.He strives to make every camera-owner a great photographer through his Photography workshops and Photo Tours and Photowalks.
All rights reserved. No copying without permission of the author Ssaurabh A Chatterjee

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