Shingo La is the pass that separates the isolated Zanskar Valley from the Lahaul Valley. The pass is at an estimated 5100 metres in altitude and is not considered very technically difficult for trekkers. Nevertheless, with our bicycles and it being so early in the season, we were happy to have Kesar and Tenzin with us and their ponies transporting our bicycles and bulk of our gear.
From Palamo, the first campsite out of Darcha, we had what would have been a rough day of cycling had we been loaded down with equipment. But without heavy paniers, we had a somewhat pleasant day riding to the next campsite despite the laughably terrible road conditions.
(Below you can watch Yann and I taking different approaches to crossing the flooded road, note Jochen laughing at us in the background)
The first few hours of our climb were relatively easy; on a gradual include and a visible trail, but we could feel the air thinning (at least we thought we could feel it) and our steps slowing. By the time we spotted the summit to the time we actually reached it took several hours.