There are regions in India that are much surprising and unique to our knowledge. What makes these sites more intriguing is the fact that they are inaccessible and far away from the reach of the general population. One such location is the Karakoram Pass. Karakoram Pass situated in the boundaries of India, China and Pakistan is not necessarily a spot that everyone would get to visit. Even though at one point of time this was an important trading route and was also a part of the ancient Silk Route, currently this pass is not in use. The unique location, topography and the climate makes it an intriguing location. If not anything else this site surely needs our attention and importance.
If you are interested in knowing everything about the Karakoram Pass then keep on reading this article. Here I will mention each and every information that you might probably need about this location. You will know information like Karakoram Pass in which state, where is Karakoram Pass located, and a lot more. This will be a helpful read for you if you are interested in knowing about this particular spot.
Where is Karakoram Pass located?
The Karakoram Pass is located in the Karakoram Range and the Karakoram Pass connects Leh in Ladakh in India and Yarkand in the Tarim Basin in China.
Karakoram Pass located in which state?
The Karakoram Pass is located on the boundary of the Union Territory of Ladakh and the Xinjiang Autonomous region of China.
This is an important pass that literally connects two countries. And if you are wondering which are the two countries connected by Karakoram Pass, then the answer would be India and China. It is one of the most important passes in the Karakoram Range located at an altitude of 5540 meters above sea level. It is also one of the highest passes in terms of altitude. This pass passes through two mountains and is about 45 meters in width. However in 1949 when Xinjiang became a part of China trade was shut down along with any sort of movements on this pass.
This area is also devoid of any sort of vegetation because temperature here is extremely low. Due to Karakoram Pass weather even animals fail to survive at this location. A huge number of animals had died along this pass and therefore a lot of bones are present here along the trail. Average temperature here remains around -10 degrees and it is a very frigid climate for survival. Also you would not find snow here because of the very high speed of wind. The roads here are also not motorable and remain closed from all sorts of traffic. The only motorable pass here is the Khunjerab Pass that is located on the Pakistan China border.
Historical Importance of Karakoram Pass
Strategically location wise the Karakoram Pass is one of the most important passes. It is also the easiest route that connects Ladakh with Tarim Basin. At one point of time this pass served as a very important trade route. This pass contributed heavily in the flourishing of the ancient and historic Silk Route and that is another reason why this pass holds so much importance. This pass was the meeting point for traders who used to come from places like Yarkand, Kashmir, Tibet, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Kashgarh and Central Asia.
The Karakoram Pass was the most popular way that the traders used to commute. Also this pass is a major reason behind the flourishing of the culture of Ladakh as well. The culture of Ladakh, the food there, dance and dress are results of the influence of this pass. Until 1949 this was an important trade route but after that this pass remained closed.
More about Karakoram Pass
The Karakoram Pass was closed for about 58 years but then a group of trekkers from India trekked to reach here. This is by far the most documented trek to this pass and also this is a sort of milestone as well. The trail starts from Nubra Valley and then passes through some of the highest passes. It goes through Saser La at 5359 meters, Depsang La at 5415 meters and finally reaches the Karakoram Pass at an altitude of 5569 meters.
It is like a real challenge to reach the Karakoram Pass because of its altitude and gradual ascend. The word Karakoram originated from the Turkic language that means “Black Gravel”. This also explains the rugged terrain of this area.
However the authorities should open the Karakoram Pass as it would gradually lead to the easing of tension between the two countries. This pass is very important for Ladakh and its culture. But due to inaccessibility this area is deprived of any opportunity, development and growth. Also in Xinjiang a very important Buddhist site of pilgrimage is located which is the Kumtura Caves. The origin of these caves goes back to the 5th century and at present there is no other way to visit here.
Opening of this pass would further boost the economy of Ladakh to an extent. It will eventually also revive the cultural ties between the two countries which were existent long back.
It is after all a really treacherous route for travelers. After the trek of 1868 there had not been many expeditions to reach this site. Even after being a picturesque location this is still a location that remains unexplored till date. Located in an isolated area this is an area with sparse population due to its rugged terrain. In 2016 a group of 11 members namely Himalayan Heights Motorcycle Expedition took an attempt to reach this location. They started their journey from Leh and went through the challenging landscape of Ladakh and crossed the Chang La Pass to finally reach the Karakoram Pass. This is yet another milestone in reaching the Karakoram Pass that will always remain important.
Due to lack of summers and extreme weather conditions the pass remains mostly inaccessible. Also at present the pass is close to any sort of traffic as well. Furthermore the opening of this pass can be fruitful for both the countries in different ways. But another issue also remains the lack of motorable roads at this location. Now that you know where is Karakoram Pass located let me know what you think of this location. Isn’t the spot too exciting to visit? Even if visiting this spot can be a little impossible at the moment the location surely deserves some attention. After all it is such an important pass as well as a former trade route. So do let me know if this article is helpful for you in knowing about everything that you probably needed to know about the Pass.