Not long ago, Agham Shyok Road was probably the worst stretch of road in all of Ladakh. It was a stretch that was actually considered dangerous to travel. Even local drivers used to avoid traveling on this road because of extremely bad conditions. But still, many people wanted to travel from Nubra Valley to Pangong Lake via the Shyok route, because they would not have to go back. to Leh and save a day on the itinerary. For a few years this road remained in a terrible state and only the adventurers dared to venture in their direction.
Much has now changed, all thanks to increased tourism in Ladakh. What was once a rocky, broken dirt trail is now a super-smooth stretch of asphalt. So if you were planning to travel directly from Nubra Valley to Pangong Tso (or vice versa), but weren’t sure how good the road was, maybe the images below may help you decide. They were clicked in May 2019 and, as you can see, the road is nowhere near as bad as before. You have absolutely nothing to worry about.
Nubra Valley to Pangong Lake via Shyok
To take Shyok Road, you need to take the road towards Village Agham after crossing the village of Khalsar; leaving the upper route towards Khardung La. When you reach Agham, you will be at a fork where the remaining road will take you to Shyok village; and the path on the right is going towards Wari La. The road to the left is the one you need to follow. The total distance on this road between Khalsar and Pangong Tso is approximately 140 km; and the total travel time is approximately 6 hours; which is about 80 to 90 km and 4-5 hours less than the Wari La route.
Should you take this path? Yes, definitely. You will save one day and the hassle of returning to Leh and then to Pangong the next day. You can also get to know some new areas and explore more. The only thing you need to remember is that there is no public transportation available on the Shyok route. So if you weren’t traveling by car, the only thing you can do is look for a shared Diskit taxi or take a ride with other tourists going to Pangong.