Pangonk Lake

Pangong Tso for "high grassland lake", also referred to as Pangong Lake, is an endorheic lake in the Himalayas situated at a height of about 4,350 m (14,270 ft).

Pangonk Lake

Pangong Tso for "high grassland lake", also referred to as Pangong Lake, is an endorheic lake in the Himalayas situated at a height of about 4,350 m (14,270 ft). It is 134 km (83 mi) long and extends from India to China. Approximately 60% of the length of the lake lies in China. The lake is 5 km (3.1 mi) wide at its broadest point. Pangong Tso for "high grassland lake", also referred to as Pangong Lake, is an endorheic lake in the Himalayas situated at a height of about 4,350 m (14,270 ft). It is 134 km (83 mi) long and extends from India to China. Approximately 60% of the length of the lake lies in China. The lake is 5 km (3.1 mi) wide at its broadest point. All together it covers 604 km2. During winter the lake freezes completely, despite being saline water. It is not part of Indus river basin area and geographically a separate land locked river basin.[3] The lake is in the process of being identified under the Ramsar Convention as a wetland of international importance. This will be the first trans-boundary wetland in South Asia under the convention. Pangong Tso is in disputed territory. The Line of Actual Control passes through the lake. A section of the lake approximately 20 km east from the Line of Actual Control is controlled by China but claimed by India. The eastern end of the lake is in Tibet. After the mid-19th century, Pangong Tso was at the southern end of the so-called Johnson Line, an early attempt at demarcation between India and China in the Aksai Chin region. The Khurnak Fort lies on the northern bank of the lake, halfway of Pangong Tso.[4] The Chinese has controlled the Khurnak Fort area since 1952.[5][6] To the south is the smaller Spanggur Tso lake. On October 20, 1962, Pangong Tso saw military action during the Sino-Indian War, successful for the People's Liberation Army Pangong Tso is still a delicate border point along the Line of Actual Control.[8][9] Incursions from the Chinese side are common. The brackish water[11] of the lake has very low micro-vegetation. Guides report that there are no fish or other aquatic life in the lake, except for some small crustaceans. On the other hand, visitors see numerous ducks and gulls over and on the lake surface. There are some species of scrub and perennial herbs that grow in the marshes around the lake. The lake acts as an important breeding ground for a variety of birds including a number of migratory birds. During summer, the Bar-headed goose and Brahmini ducks are commonly seen here. The region around the lake supports a number of species of wildlife including the kiang and the Marmot. Formerly, Pangong Tso had an outlet to Shyok River, a tributary of Indus River, but it was closed off due to natural damming. Two streams feed the lake from the Indian side, forming marshes and wetlands at the edges.[12] Strand lines above current lake level reveal a 5 m (16 ft) thick layer of mud and laminated sand, suggesting the lake has shrunken recently in geological scale.[11] No fish have been observed in the lake, however in the stream coming from South-eastern side (Cheshul nalla),three fish species (Schizopygopsis stoliczkae, Triplophysa stoliczkae and Triplophysa gracilis) have been reported (Bhat et al, 2011). The low biodiversity in the lake has been reported as being due to high salinity and harsh environmental conditions (Bhat et al, 2011).

Major Tourist Attractions in Pangonk Lake

  • Tso Moriri

    Tsomoriri or Lake Moriri (official name: Tsomoriri Wetland Conservation Reserve, Tibetan: ལྷ་མོའི་བླ་མཚོ, Wylie: lha mo bla mtsho), is a lake in the Changthang (literally: northern plains) area in Jammu and Kashmir. The lake is at an altitude of 4,595 m (15,075 ft); it is the largest of the high altitude lakes in the Trans-Himalayan biogeographic region, entirely within India. The lake sits between Ladakh, India to the North, Tibet to the east, and Zanskar in the west.

  • Tso Kar

    Tso Kar is kind of twin lake where the eastern part of the lake is fresh water lake whereas the western park is salt water. The two parts are connetcted by a small stream.

  • Mirpal Tso

    Mirpal Tso is near to chusul and is completely isolated. The bed of lake is sandy and south end has fresh water.

  • Chagar Tso

    Another beautiful lake en route Pangong. The lake is small and mostly missed by tourist on their rush to reach Pangong.

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