A Short Ride in the Hindu Kush
In the autumn of 1996 I was feeling in need of a small dose of adventure. According to the guidebooks, the North-West Frontier Province of Pakistan was about the most beautiful and dangerous place on Indian subcontinent — just the ticket!
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Loading the bike in Peshawar for the lift north to Timergara
On the road to Dir
Political rally, near Warai. (Benazir Bhutto had appeared in tears on TV the night before. She was dismissed from office soon afterwards.)
On the Lowari Pass (3118 m)
Descending the Lowari Pass
On the road to Buni
On the road to Buni
Konar river, near Buni
The Buni Zoum Hotel, my accommodation in Buni
On the road between Buni and Mastuj
Approaching Mastuj, en-route from Buni
Approaching Mastuj, having just crossed the bridge
Looking back west, on the approach to Mastuj.
Tirich Mir 7708 m, the highest peak in the Hindu Kush
Looking south from Mastuj
Between Mastuj and Sor Laspur
On the road to Sor Laspur
With the bike broken, reduced to travelling by jeep. In Sor Laspur
On the Shandur Pass, looking back towards Sor Laspur
Shandur Top, 3734 m. The locals play polo up here in the summer. This barrier used to be the border between Pakistan and India until Pakistan annexed half of Kashmir. Now it's the boundary between the North-West Frontier Province and the Northern Areas. And bloody cold it is too!
I spent the night at the NAPWD rest house in Teru.
Political rally in Gilgit.
Polo match in Gilgit.
Passu, on the Karakoram Highway.
The final bridge before Dut had yet to be built.
Mohamed Khan, Mohamed Wafa, John and Amin (Chris out of shot) preparing to leave Dut.
Lunch at Zyarat
Crossing the Shimshal river.
The Mulungutti Glacier and Disteghil Sar (7885 m).
The mountain is the world's 19th (and Pakistan's 7th) highest.
Fermanabad, the last village before Shimshal. Only one house was permanently occupied.
Shimshal village children.
Friends and relations.
Our guide Amin outside his house in Shimshal.
Cooking dinner in Amin's house.
Setting off back to Dut.
Meeting Meherban Shah, the famous Pakistani mountaineer, at his home in Fermanabad.
A party of yak hearders, heading towards Shimshal.
Mohamed Wafa at Dut.