Rode to Heaven, Ladakh by Shamim Akhtar

I recently received a copy of Rode to Heaven, Ladakh, a coffee table book on Ladakh by Shamim Akhtar.

Rode to Heaven, Ladakh features photographs from Shamim’s solo motorcycle trip to Ladakh in June 2008.

Shamim Akhtar is a footloose traveler and has a keen eye for photography. Shamim’s effort to capture the stunning landscape of Ladakh is omnipresent through the course of his journey, even while faced with reoccurring motorcycle problems, harsh weather, high altitude and even frost bite!

For instance, majority of the travelers to Ladakh, stop for only a short duration at More Plains, rarely do you come across a hardy soul, who has the determination and patience to stop there and capture 36 photographs, which make this beautiful 360 degree panorama of More Plains!

Click to enlarge

Result of all this hard work is one of the most engaging and beautifully depicted books on Ladakh, which is not only filled with wonderful photographs of Ladakhi landscape, but also portraits of the inhabitants and birds/animals.

In fact as soon as you look at the cover of this coffee table book, you know it is something special, as it features a stunning infrared panorama of Tso Moriri. Here is my frail attempt to capture half of it through my lens, believe me, it looks much-much better in person.

Click to enlarge

Overall it is a fantastic coffee table book to immerse yourself in and apart from a few textual errors, (which one hardly notices, unless you are a nitpicker like me :D), it is hard find any fault with it.

Rode to Heaven, Ladakh is published by NISHCAM publications (ISBN 978-81-905833-1-2) and is available at all leading bookstores in India, at a retail price of Rs. 3500.

Shamim would also be coming out with two new coffee table books (looking forward to them), one of which is a compilation of black and white photographs of Delhi, while the other features photographs from his trip to Kailash Mansarovar.


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