Although we finally got our India Visas we decided to fist drive up to northern Pakistan on the Karakorum Highway. It took us three days for driving from Islamabad to Gilgit. That’s around 650 kilometers in total.
It’s called a highway but that’s clearly a nice way of labelling this road. Nanuk belongs to the fast vehicles up here, especially on the last stretch where the road is actually off-road…We managed to drive 35-37km/h on average and therefore 200 kilometers of driving takes quite some time. The road is destroyed in many places because of landslides, earthquakes, rockfalls and whatnot…So the going is rather slow even in a Landrover 4×4 vehicle.
The road follows the indus valley almost all the way up to Gilgit in Baltistan. The valley has steep slopes and the road winds along the side of the river. Sometimes really high up with the river far down. That’s especialls scary when half of the road is missing and Liliane can look down from her window into the river which is far below.
You have to be very concentrated while driving because there are massive bumps and ditches everyhwere. The drive up here was an adventure in itself and especially day three was hard because there was no more asphalt and we had 40 degrees and strong winds. The winds pick up all the dust, and since you have to drive with the windows open, you get dirty during the day. Trees are a rare thing up here and so is shade.
We were glad to reach Gilgit where we found a nice place to stay. There is a garden that you can sit in. Currently we’re waiting for some spare parts because the oil pump of the power steering was dripping lot’s of oil. Once tha’ts fixed we’ll continue to Karimabad in the Hunza valley.
This area up here is really nice. Some of the highest peaks of the world are here. The K2 the Nanga Parbat just to name some of the more famous ones. Of course we won’t do any trekking with Lola. But we’ll be just happy to have a look at some of these beautiful mountains.