I’ll spoil the final ending but YES I did survive this perilous adventure!
Wissam and I were heading back towards the military base to find some help while Vince was trying to get the car out of the snow with the driver. The wind was blowing quite hard and the snow falling steadily but the temperature was not so bad at all and the walk was rather pleasant thanks to the great outdoor gear I had from Mountains Equipment Cooperative (wink wink). What made the walk harder was the lack of oxygen at such a high altitude (15 300 ft/4700 m) but at least the road was going down.
After a while of walking and taking selfies looking like an Arctic badass explorer (and taking some shots of the surroundings because you know, I’m a photographer and we tend to do that) what did I hear? A car coming! Unsurprisingly, it was Vince coming with our car and driver, just before we reached the military base, close one! Turned out they managed to push the car back on the road and not down the cliff which is a good thing.
Back in the comfort of the car, I was glad to get back to Leh alive knowing that we kind of reached Kardung La even if we haven’t crossed it. Does it count? I decide it does count alright. I’ve been to Kardung La.
On the way back, the light was going down but better at the same time and I could stop the car many times to get different shots of the road, including the ones this post is all about. How Did I Get That Shot? Just ask the driver to stop strategically and in advance in a safe spot, run with your camera ready with the lens you want. In that case I had a wide angle to play with the perspective of the road in the middle of the mountains and I waited for a car to go by to add some movement and dynamism.
Once again, remember to always have your camera ready and take some shots of whatever and whenever, you never know and always dress well in Ladakh in winter.
Important things to remember if you do not want to read the whole story even though you should
- If a plan starts by: put some warm cloths and follow me, do put on some warm cloths and do follow
- Never hesitate to ask a driver to stop for a shot but be strategic, you can’t stop every 2 minutes
- Get some Mountain Equipment Coop gear, it’s pretty good
- Let the others take care of the car while you take a walk and shoot some selfies
- Make dramatic faces on your selfies
- Whatever you do, go to Ladakh
- Rule of thirds, do not forget
- Best light is the one you have but make the best of it
- Add moving objects if possible (possible can mean waiting)
- Play with black and white with snowy images