It was an early June morning and the sun had already risen as if asking me to get up and run to the bus station. The bus to Kaza was to depart at 7:00 am and I had planned to travel from Recong Peo to Nako as I had two days left with me before I could travel back to Shimla.
I had always desired to visit Nako and the opportunity lay right before me. As the bus sped off from Recong Peo to Nako, I noticed that the speedometer of the bus was well beyond 70 kilometers per hour. That would be perhaps enough for sending a chill down the spine especially when you have the mighty Sutlej flowing the other side. However, the drivers are well experienced and I decided to just watch the pristine beauty of the hills and enjoy the ride.
In less than an hour, we were at Spillo, a small hamlet where the driver stopped for a cup of tea. It was at Spillo that I had the best salt tea in a long time. The next town was at Peo a further 55 Km away and the mountains were getting higher and distinctly different from what we see in lower regions of Kinnaur.
This bus ride from Recong Peo to Nako was proving to be one of the best as the bus was full of locals and I could well sense that life offers the same challenges to all of us, only the geographies are different.
Tough Roads and Simple People
The road was in bad condition in patches as there was danger of falling rocks at every crossing. However, credit to the tough force of Border Roads Organization who keep it handy, all the while.
Once we were past Pooh, the thought of being in an area in close proximity to China brought an entirely different perspective and I could but admire the valour of local people who brave all the adversities on daily basis.
The sight of river Spiti which joins Sutlej at Khab is also another key location one should not miss. A small eatery serving hot Maggi operates here. However, as the bus from Recong Peo to Nako did not have a stoppage at Khab, I could only admire the beauty for a while as the bus stopped to drop and pick up some passengers.
The road also turns into a kind of tunnel briefly as solid rocks hang above the road giving the impression of a tunnel. Soon the landscape changed and I felt as if I was in Spiti. The barren landscape and high altitude flora replace the scenario as we change the mountains.
The Y junction at Yangthang also diverts the road into different areas and the right one takes one to Nako. I clearly remember that as the bus sped off to Nako. A few turns later the bus was at Nako and I was at the gates of a village, I had desired to visit for long.
Much more in the next blog on this series!