Who's going to India - Summer '08?

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Who's going to India - Summer '08?

Post by Poke » Thu May 08, 2008 6:20 pm

It seems as though every man and his dog are heading to India this summer? Though maybe it just seems that way as different individuals from the same groups are popping up asking questions?

So, out of interest, who's going (who will you be paddling with), when and where abouts/what rivers are you planning to run?

We've got a group of seven:
Tim Burne (Poke)
Patrick Clissold (Patrick C)
Ralph Evins (Digimeister)
Tom Laws (Tom Laws)
Dave Goadby (Scuba Dave)
Tom Haywood (Tom Haywood)
Adam Holland

We'll all be out there between 25th July and 25th Aug, 'though some (lucky barstewards) will be out there for longer (both before and after).

Not sure what rivers yet, though Chenab/Chandra/Dras I think are all on the list. Think that some are planning to hit the Zanskar post 25th Aug when those of us that have already done it have gone home.
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Post by Grumpy Fisherman » Thu May 08, 2008 8:51 pm

A group of 4 of us are heading out on the 22nd Aug for a bit over 2 weeks:

Owen Jackson (Grumpy Fisherman)
Rob Gilbert (Busstop)
Tim Stevenson (Little Tim)
Ste Park (Park)

The Tsarap / Zanskar are the only rivers on the list at the moment, but sure others will go on there too.
Last edited by Grumpy Fisherman on Fri May 09, 2008 12:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by dolph » Thu May 08, 2008 10:55 pm

It seems as though every man and his dog are heading to India this summer?[quote]

Yeah, two of us going, its going to feel well crowded!!

We'll try not to spoil your holiday.

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Post by shalabhgahlaut » Sat May 10, 2008 7:47 am

A team is out to celebrate a 50th birthday by paddling the Zanskar in early August. Some of the team may be hanging out longer to paddle some more.
Some european kayakers are also there for the Tsarap n Zanskar in August.
In september G17 is running a commercial trip on the Tsarap.

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Re: Who's going to India - Summer '08?

Post by Digimeister » Mon May 12, 2008 1:06 pm

Poke wrote: ...though some (lucky barstewards) will be out there for longer (both before and after).
Yep. Adam Holland, Tom Haywood and I will be doing the Tsarup / Zanskar at the end of Aug / early Sept, then some more Indian boating til Tom returns at the end of Sept. Adam and I then have a couple of weeks to make our way over to Nepal, where we're meeting Mark Flower (mfflower) for a futher 3 weeks, returning to Blighty on 1st Nov.[/b]
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Post by little tim » Mon May 12, 2008 1:59 pm

Didn't know you were planning that too Ralph. That happens to be the exact time we're there too, so will probably see you either in Leh or on the water.

T

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Post by Grumpy Fisherman » Tue Jul 01, 2008 12:52 pm

Seeing as there seems to be a few groups going out, if people stop at the Phuktal monestary, can they pass on anything the monks want / need? I know saw blades were taken out previously... anything info like that would be great!

Owen

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Post by Ricks-Freestyle-Mind » Tue Jul 01, 2008 1:09 pm

As a very rough estimate, how much would a 'holiday' say two weeks paddling in India cost, including flights, insurance, food, drink etc etc as a very rough guide?

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Post by Grumpy Fisherman » Tue Jul 01, 2008 1:14 pm

Including a first aid course and a WWRT for us all (been a while), purchasing extra bits of kit and the trip itself, I reckon its going to cost me near-on 2 grand. But it could be cheaper. Hard to say!

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Post by The Drowned Fish » Tue Jul 01, 2008 1:16 pm

We spent about £1000 all in

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Post by Patrick Clissold » Tue Jul 01, 2008 3:19 pm

Ricks-Freestyle-Mind wrote:As a very rough estimate, how much would a 'holiday' say two weeks paddling in India cost, including flights, insurance, food, drink etc etc as a very rough guide?
Depends on who you get your flight with. I managed 400 quid flight to Delhi with virgin because I'm out here all summer but some in the same group are paying 600 quid as they are here for a shorter period.

Last time I was here (2 years ago) I spent about 800 quid including flights to do 3-4 weeks in India. We were doing it quite on the cheap, i.e. fitting 4 people in double rooms etc.

One thing to bare in mind is the increase in food and petrol prices. I'm in Nepal at the moment and it's quite a stark increase from two years ago.

Saying that if you budget a grand then you can have quite a comfy trip without having to worry that much on whether to have beer at dinner etc.

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Post by Ricks-Freestyle-Mind » Tue Jul 01, 2008 3:23 pm

Thanks,

Not quite like your £19.99 flight tickets to Ibiza then!

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Post by Mark R » Tue Jul 01, 2008 4:53 pm

The Drowned Fish wrote:We spent about £1000 all in
... however we did do it 'luxury' style with our own buses and drivers to shuttle us everywhere. More expensive, but less hassle and you get to paddle every day.
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Post by The Drowned Fish » Tue Jul 01, 2008 6:25 pm

... however we did do it 'luxury' style with our own buses and drivers to shuttle us everywhere. More expensive, but less hassle and you get to paddle every day.
You mean there's another way?

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Rides back from Nimu and the lower Indus

Post by shalabhgahlaut » Thu Jul 10, 2008 11:25 am

Hi guys, if you make it to the confluence of the Indus n Zanskar by 3 PM, you can get a ride back to Leh with the rafters from the Splash camp a kilometer past the confluence.
Also would suggest heading further down the Indus till Baima and add another 140 kms on the trip. But note that a permit is needed for paddling the lower Indus and should be arranged from Leh.
Also, be advised not to burn any firewood on the river as its pretty valuable for the villagers in winter. Keep the camps clean, there are many groups on the river this year and rubbish will be noticed at the few campsites!
Cheers
Shalabh

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Re: Rides back from Nimu and the lower Indus

Post by Mark R » Thu Jul 10, 2008 6:57 pm

shalabhgahlaut wrote:Hi guys, if you make it to the confluence of the Indus n Zanskar by 3 PM, you can get a ride back to Leh with the rafters from the Splash camp a kilometer past the confluence.
How times have changed. First time I arrived at the end of the Zanskar (1998?) it took me 5 or 6 hitches to get back to Leh, including one ride that involved a prolonged visit to pay respects to a military Sikh shrine. I went inside the holy cave and everything! Second time, we waited 4-5 hours for a hitch.

Possibly thing s were quiet because of the (rather lively) military situation back then?
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Re: Rides back from Nimu and the lower Indus

Post by Slime » Thu Jul 10, 2008 7:11 pm

[quote="
How times have changed. First time I arrived at the end of the Zanskar (1998?) it took me 5 or 6 hitches to get back to Leh, including one ride that involved a prolonged visit to pay respects to a military Sikh shrine. I went inside the holy cave and everything! Second time, we waited 4-5 hours for a hitch.

[/quote]
Eeeh you lads had it easy. Back in 85 we had to survive on sun dried scorpions for 4 days and we got so hungry we ate our wet suit boots. Luckily a camel caravan came by and there was a jolly decent chap called Shipton who took pity on us.

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Post by David Fairweather » Thu Jul 10, 2008 7:11 pm

In 2006 we took off the Zanskar at the Splash campsite, were given a very welcome cup of tea and then it took no time at all to hitch a ride from a truck that was happy to carry us and our boats in the back, which made for stunning views of Leh on the way in.

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Post by Randy Fandango » Fri Jul 11, 2008 11:40 am

Of course, if you're really nails, you can paddle down into the Tsarap/ Zanskar trip and then walk back up rather like Rosie and the Irish guys did a couple of years back ;-)
Eek!
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Post by Grumpy Fisherman » Tue Jul 22, 2008 4:05 pm

Regarding taking first aid kits through customs... are we supposed to declare medicines or not? Seeing as opiates including codeine are covered by narcotics laws in India, do they need to be declared?

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Late Entry

Post by thomashunter » Tue Jul 22, 2008 9:07 pm

Oh yeah we're going to India too...Im guessing non of our group are on the forum too often! We have a cheeky team of 5 going:

Tom Hunter
Ash Bullivant
Miles Jones
Guy Genge
Sean Steven-Zheim


I look forward to seeing others out there....but also hoping its not too swamped with Brits!

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Post by Slime » Wed Jul 23, 2008 10:05 am

Grumpy Fisherman wrote:Regarding taking first aid kits through customs... are we supposed to declare medicines or not? Seeing as opiates including codeine are covered by narcotics laws in India, do they need to be declared?
I havent heard of anyone having problems with first aid kits. In my experience it is very rare for foreign tourists to get stopped or searched on entering India. It is though probably sensible to put your first aid kit in the hold luggage to avoid security searchers openning it enroute.

The other point is that medical drugs are really cheap in India - maybe a tenth of the UK price and available everywhere without a prescription, so with expensive drugs like cipro its easier and cheaper to stock up your kit when you get there. There is perhaps a minor risk of the drugs being less effective or counterfeit.

May you never need those drugs!

Have a drink with Shalabh for me.

Slime

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Codeine

Post by shalabhgahlaut » Wed Jul 23, 2008 6:06 pm

The codeine is a narotic, never been a problem but you could get booked on a fairly major offence, dont carry it!
Though I used codeine last winter after fracturing my ankle and can tell you the stuff works very well!
But then, we can meet in Leh and I can fix you an alternate you shoudnt be caught flying back with.

Its the biggest kayaking year for Ladakh this year, maybe we should race, play on the Top Of the World someday.
Cheers n cya
Shalabh

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Post by Slime » Thu Jul 24, 2008 10:13 am

We almost have a Ladakhi Paddlers sub forum here!

I cannot make it to Zanskar and ladakh this summer but can I just put everyone in the picture about the new road up the Grand Canyon of the Zanskar and the issues ?

When I was last in Zanskar in 2005 I was puzzled by the purpose of this new road and spent some time talking to various authoritative. Like many projects that are funded by central government, once started they seem to have a life of their own and few people know the full picture. For example most of the people I first talked to thought it was a military road.

I think that it is important that local people and visitors should be informed and ask questions. The Grand Canyon of the Zanskar is somewhere really world class - most local people dont realise this - I feel that we as visitors (and international river experts) can help them realise what a special thing they have, and that they should perhaps protect it from development.

The Grand Canyon of the Zanskar has been called the Grand Canyon of Asia, however very few Indians have heard of it. Every international visitor I talk to is amazed that it is not a National Park. We can all do our bit to help inform and educate people.

Good paddling on the 'Roof of the World'!

Pete Knowles.

This is the text of a letter that I sent to Melong - the local Budhist Magazine in Leh.

The Zanskar road – ‘Connectivity’ or a cultural disaster?

Dear Editor,

May I use your magazine to join others in questioning the benefits of the proposed road up the Grand Canyon of the Zanskar.

I was in Ladakh last summer leading an international rafting group on the Zanskar and the Indus. I have made several visits to Ladakh and Zanskar, first coming here some twenty years ago. I and my group were dismayed and puzzled to see the new road that is starting to be built up the Zanskar Gorge, and to hear that the long term aim is to extend it to Padum. After the trip I spent some time talking to local people to find out about the plans for the road.
1. I was told by military authorities that the road has little military purpose. There are no plans to continue the road south beyond Zanskar. (The new road from Manali, agreed by National Government last September, will broadly follow the route of the existing Manali to Leh highway.)
2. The thinking behind the Zanskar road appears to be “connectivity” –
a) - so that the inhabitants of Zanskar can have a winter road link to Leh.
b) - to connect the mainly Budhist district of Zanskar to the main Budhist region
of Leh, and thus to encourage cultural links and identity.

When I talked a bit more to local people they started to question the benefits of the road and I think it is worth listing the points that were put to me. It was suggested that if the highway was built:
1. It would have a devastating cultural effect on Zanksar – with Padum and surrounding villages becoming overwhelmed by an influx of domestic tourists and immigrant traders to cater for them. People said to me “look at Manali”!
2. The highway would have to blasted out of the cliffs of the Zanskar Gorge - International tourists I spoke to were horrified – “like building a multi-storey car park next to the Taj Mahal“ is what one American trekking leader said.
3. A world class rafting trip would be no more, and international river runners would no longer come to India and Ladakh to run the Grand Canyon of the Zanskar.
4. In the last few years the ‘winter walk’, the Cheddar, has become a world famous premier trek - this, and the associated tourist revenue would cease.
5. Zanskar District would lose a lot of its status as somewhere very special. It would no longer be viewed as the premier, quality, trekking destination that it has built a reputation for.
6. The highway is going to cost a huge amount in money and lives to build – and the annual maintenance costs will also be huge. Is this money that could be better spent?

The more I talked to people, the more doubts they threw up, and the more people questioned the economic and cultural benefits of the proposed road. How much money does trekking and rafting bring in to Zanskar and Ladakh? What kind of tourists do local people want? Will easy access to Zanskar strengthen Budhist culture or the reverse? This is for you local people to discuss and decide – I would just like to assure you that the Grand Canyon of the Zankar is a world class site (perhaps deserving World Heritage Status?) and something that shouldn’t be damaged lightly.

Thank you everyone in Zankar and Ladakh last summer for your hospitality, and especially the villagers of Nyerak!

Peter Knowles, FRGS.

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Instant heat

Post by shalabhgahlaut » Thu Jul 24, 2008 5:18 pm

Anyone know about gel filled pouches that have a small piece of metal?, which when broken makes the pouch go real warm. Reheating the bag undo's the chemical reaction and can be used again!
They would be quite practical for someone mildly hypothermic?

I also want to recomend a thermometer and a space blanket in the medical kit for swimmers.

Any thoughts on this would be very welcome as hypothermia can be a easily overlooked serious medical situation after a long swim.

Ive seen a few mild cases and 1 severe case whilerafting in Ladakh. The severe case was aggravated when the docs at the hospital gave the victim a IV drip at room temprature which only lowered the body temp further. Took the guy a few months to recover and he might have suffered some damage to the kidneys because of the swim.

Do you carry anything in the team medical kit to deal with hypothermia?

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Post by Digimeister » Fri Jul 25, 2008 8:23 am

Shalabh,

I wouldn't recommend the gel pouches for hypothermia - they heat up the extremities, which stops the body concentrating heat the the core. I would advise hot drinks and a space blanket or bothy bag. Remember if it is very severe they need to be warmed up again slowly. I believe a warm bath gradually increasing in temperature is how it it done. Maybe post this as a new topic, I'm sure lots of people will know better than me.

We did the Yamuna yesterday - very nice run. Off to the Tons now.

Cheers,

Ralph.
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Re: Instant heat

Post by little tim » Fri Jul 25, 2008 9:46 am

shalabhgahlaut wrote:Do you carry anything in the team medical kit to deal with hypothermia?
Yep - and we'll bring you out a lightweight bivvi bag and show you the caving trick for warming people up. I could get you some gel packs, but as ralph says they're not great for hypothermia, more for cold hands!

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Good advice

Post by shalabhgahlaut » Sat Jul 26, 2008 4:05 pm

Thanks for the advice, surely drinking warm liquids is the best way to raise core temperature. A warm bag couuld be nice for freezing finger tips, but rather cumbersome to carry on a self contained trip.
Cheers and catch up soon in Ladakh.

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Re: Good advice

Post by David Fairweather » Sat Jul 26, 2008 4:23 pm

shalabhgahlaut wrote:Thanks for the advice, surely drinking warm liquids is the best way to raise core temperature.
As long as it is warm, and not hot. If someone is deeply hypothermic, then giving then a hot drink could send them into shock, giving you a whole world of problems.

A reasonable guide to follow is that people should be warmed at about the same rate as they got cold, so if they developed hypothermia over a long day, then they should be warmed gradually. A lightweight bivi is probably the easiest and most adaptable means of dealing with serious hypothermia.

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Speed

Post by shalabhgahlaut » Sat Jul 26, 2008 6:50 pm

Say a 5-7 minute swim in the Zanskar, followed by uncontrolled shivering, teeth chattering and incoherence. That could be long enough to get hypothermic, what would be the best for such a situation?
Cheers, Shalabh

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