Khardung La

Khardung La

Khardung La (Khardung Pass, la means pass in Tibetan) is a mountain pass in the Leh district of the Indian union territory of Ladakh. The local pronunciation is "Khardong La" or "Khardzong La" but, as with most names in Ladakh, the romanised spelling varies.

The pass on the Ladakh Range is north of Leh and is the gateway to the Shyok and Nubra valleys. The Siachen Glacier lies part way up the latter valley. Built in 1976, it was opened to public motor vehicles in 1988. Maintained by the Border Roads Organisation, the pass is strategically important to India as it is used to carry supplies to the Siachen Glacier.

The elevation of Khardung La is 5,359 m (17,582 ft). Local summit signs and dozens of stores selling shirts in Leh incorrectly claim that its elevation is in the vicinity of 5,602 m (18,379 ft) and that it is the world's highest motorable pass.

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