No matter how many days we spend in the mountains it will always turn out to be less. When we visited Sangla a few days ago, we had a to-do list prepared from the well-know travel site Trip-advisor. While on dinner, our hotel staff suggested us to visit Kanda ~ a small village with a lake at almost 2 hour drive or 5-6 hour trek from the valley. We decided to give this unheard & hidden spot a shot!!
We hired a 4X4 cab – a car with gears for front wheels. Why hire?? Because normal cars wouldn’t work on the undeveloped road with steep deadly turns. It was not an unanimous decision yet proved to be a great one on those roads!! If you have some time to spare, but not enough time for trek then I highly recommend renting a car from Sangla.
As we started off the drive and reached Baspa river – a point till where we walked the previous day – we couldn’t believe that any car/truck could cross those narrow lanes. After crossing the Baspa river bridge, the road turned more bumpy and it was more of a walking path rather than road. As we were moving up the mountain we could see the entire Sangla village right in front of us.
Few locals also joined us in the back of the truck which actually proved helpful in managing the weight also making the ride less bumpy ~ so the more number of people the better!!! We also came across some trekkers and families going via Kanda till Reocong Pass and some were coming back to Sangla. After the super-bumpy ride which lasted 2 hours, we finally reached the base-camp in Kanda for trekkers going to Reocong Pass and the lake right on the back side of the camp.
There was no direct way to reach lake, I literally had to cross bushes to reach the starting point of the lake. I must accept I was little disappointed by such less water in the lake and though they should rather call it a pond. But as said something is better than nothing and I was rather loving the fact that we took the lesser known path!! Well, later the locals told us the lake is sort of mysterious and no one actually knows where the water in the lake comes from and where does it go towards…quite intriguing..right??
A gorgeous lake located at an altitude of 3,568 meters, surrounded by snow-capped mountains whose reflection can be seen vibrantly in the algae encompassed water. Locals refer these snow coated mountains as Kailash ~ Residence of Lord Shiva. Stories rotate among the locals that no trekkers or locals dare to go up these Kailash mountains as those who tried in past never came back. So as said, it is not easy to find God 🙂
Basic facilities are available at the camp for the tourists including food and washrooms. I think no trip is complete without trying local cuisine no matter now simple it is like the tea and Maggi we ordered. Although, the tea was too sweet for me and if you visit there and wish to have tea then I suggest request them to keep sugar low.
P.S. It is advisable to reach Kanda before 12h00 noon as winds gets freezing after that and at the altitude of 3,568 meters, the weather is always unpredictable. It is better to stay safe rather than regretting later!!
In the meantime when our tea/snacks were being prepared, we explored the entire hill. A meager river flows at the base of the hill known as ‘Black River’ and it merges in the Baspa river upon reaching Sangla. The river is slightly in black color and is rumored to be cursed.
After enjoying the snack amid windy weather and scorching sun, we headed back to explore the rest of Sangla. It is place worth visiting from Sangla and wouldn’t take more than 6 hours by cab or 10-13 hours by trek. I highly recommend visiting Kanda from Sangla. It’s not only about the lake, but the adventurous ride, the view of Kailash mountains and the feeling I get at the top of hill are enough reasons to visit.
Have you heard about Kanda before? Did you ever get a chance to visit the Kanda Lake? Do share your experience with me in the comment box below.
– The Wanderer