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Rivers in Ladakh, Jammu & Kashmir

Rivers in Ladakh, Jammu & Kashmir

The Ladakh region has many rivers which is the best way to explore through adventure activity, river rafting. The main rivers in Ladakh region are :

Ladakh Rivers :

Indus River :

The Indus River is a major river which flows through China, India and Pakistan. Originating in the Tibetan plateau of western China in the vicinity of Lake Mansarovar in Tibet Autonomous Region, the river runs a course through the Ladakh district of Jammu and Kashmir Province of India and then enters Pakistan via the Northern Areas (Gilgit-Baltistan) The total length of the river is 3,180kms (1,976mi) and it is Pakistan’s longest river.

Suru River :

The Suru River is a river in Jammu and Kashmir that forms the western and northern boundary of the Zanskar Range. The river forms in the Zanskar Region of Ladakh after melting from the glaciers on the high mountains in this region, and flows through Kargil. The Suru River merges with Dras River coming from Dras, 5 km ahead of Kargil and enters Pakistan side Kashmir (PSK) through Post 43 (India) and Post 44 (PSK), which is further 5 km ahead from the point of merger of Dras River and Suru River.

Zanskar River :

The Zanskar River is a north-flowing tributary of the Indus. In its upper reaches, the Zanskar has two main branches. First of these, the Doda, has its source near the Pensi La 14,450 ft (4,400 m) mountain-pass and flows south-eastwards along the main Zanskar valley leading towards Padum, the capital of Zanskar. The second branch is formed by two main tributaries known as Kargyag river, with its source near the Shingo La 16,703 ft (5,091 m), and Tsarap river, with its source near the Baralacha La. These two rivers unite below the village of Purne to form the

Lungnak river (also known as the Lingti or Tsarap). The Lungnak river then flows north-westwards along a narrow gorge towards Zanskar’s central valley (known locally as gzhung khor), where it unites with the Doda river to form the main Zanskar river. This river then takes a north-eastern course through the dramatic Zanskar Gorge until it joins the Indus near Nimmu in Ladakh.

Doda River :

The Doda is a river in Jammu and Kashmir. It flows through the Ladakh. The source of the river is the Drang Drung glacier of the Pensi La. The river flows into the Padum Valley, and joins with the Tsarap River to form the larger Zanskar River.

Tsarap River :

The Tsarap or Tsarap Chu is a river in Jammu and Kashmir. It flows through the Zanskar region of the state of Ladakh. The river joins with the Doda River to form the larger Zanskar River.

Nubra River :

The Nubra River is a tributary of the Shyok River, which flows through the Nubra Valley in North Ladakh, into the Indus River to the east of Skardu, Pakistan. It originates from the Siachen glacier, also behaves like the Shyok. Before Tirit the southeast flowing river Nubra takes a northwest turn on meeting the river Shyok. The similarity in the courses of these two important rivers probably indicates a series of paleo fault lines trending northwest-southeast in delimiting the upper courses of the rivers.

Shyok River :

The Shyok River flows through northern Ladakh in India and the Northern Areas of Pakistan (Ghangche District), spanning some 550 km (340 mi). The Shyok River, a tributary of the Indus River, originates from the Rimo Glacier, one of the tongues of Siachen Glacier. The river widens at the confluence with the Nubra River. The alignment of the Shyok river is very unusual, originating from the Rimo glacier, it flows in a south easternly direction and joining the Pangong range, it takes a northwestern turn, flowing parallel to its previous path. The Shyok flows in a wide valley, entering a narrow gorge after Chalunka and continuing through Turtuk and Tyakshi before crossing into Pakistan. The Shyok joins the Indus at Keris, to the east of the town of Skardu. The importance of the Indus and the Shyok rivers is in the deposition of the thick Quaternary sediments—a treasure trove for geology researchers.

Markha River :

The Markha River is a river in Ladakh. It is a tributary of the Zanskar River. The Markha river flows through the Markha Valley , which is one of the most popular trekking routes in Ladakh. Above the valley is the Kang Yatze mountain.

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Sudhir Kumar

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