Travelfish contributions by davidurmann
The first number represents the total number of published reviews by davidurmann. The bracketed figure is submitted reviews -- reviews may not be published for editorial reasons or may be removed because the property concerned has been delisted from Travelfish or has closed.
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Life according to davidurmann
Founder of Touristlink.com a social network for travel. Touristlink lets travelers connect with each other and with locals for tours, transport, cultural, language exchanges, friendships and more. Touristlink is now one of the fastest growing “big” social travel sites and we expect to grow our member base from 30,000 today (January 2014) to 300,000 in the next 8 months. I am an avid traveler and have to been to over 40 countries. I started Touristlink out of my passion for travel. I recently, raised seed funding for Touristlink in both Chile and Kenya and had a chance to live in both these countries.
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Lidder Valley and Kolahoi Glacier Trek
Published 1:43 am, 11 Sep 2014
One of the best short treks in Kashmir is the Lidder Valley trek to Kolahoi Glacier. My wife Ann and I made this trek in July of 2014 and here is little bit about the experience. This is a great first trek in Kashmir although if you have a little more time the Great Lakes Trek is perhaps the better option. Having spent a few days in Srinigar exploring the old town we decided it was time to get out of the relative heat of Srinigar and hit the mountains. The snows were particularly heavy this year so the Great Lake Trek was still in snow despite it being early July so we decided to make the journey to Kolahoi Glacier. We left Srinagar around 8am and headed by private vehicle to Pahalgam where many locals were preparing for the Amarnath Yatra. This is an amazing pilgrimage taken by more than 100,000 pilgrims every year. It is itself a spectacular 5 day trek to a holy ice cave where an ice stalagmite thought to represent the Linga of Shiva forms every year. Legend says this is the cave where Shiva explained the secret of life and the universe to his […]
Climbing Stok Kangri? What You Need to Know.
Published 4:43 am, 9 Sep 2014
Any 6000m+ peak needs to be taken seriously and Stok Kangri is no exception. It might be called a trekking peak but the final 1000m to the summit is seriously steep and tough going. Don’t belive it – Check out this video showing one of the members in our group reaching the summit. Here’s a recap of my experience on Stok Kangri. My first trekking experience in Ladakh was an attempt on the popular trekking peak of Stok Kangri (6,153m, 20050 Ft). We wife and I arrived in Leh after spending a few days in Kashmir and trekking to Kolahoi Glacier. Just getting to Leh from Srinagar or Manali is an experience if you take the overland route rather than opting for a direct flight. Ladakh is essentially on the backside of the Himalayan Range and lies outside of the influence of the Indian Monsoon so is extremely dry and arid. We spent a casual 3 days in Leh (3524 m / 11,562 ft) the starting point for the trek hoping to acclimatize before we began the assault on Stok Kangri. The trek is possible in 3 days for those who are physically fit and already well acclimatized, but given […]
Is Trekking in Kashmir Safe ?
Published 12:04 am, 12 Aug 2014
The terms “Heaven on Earth” or “Paradise” are often used to describe Kashmir and it’s easy to forget any security concerns while trekking among tall pine trees, wildflower laden meadows and distant snow capped peaks under deep blue skies. The stunning beauty of the region has long attracted visitors from afar and the tourism industry has long been a mainstay of the local economy. A peaceful political situation made the region a popular destination for international visitors in the 1970’s and 1980’s but all this came to a halt with political unrest in the 1990’s. The kidnapping of 6 foreign tourists by militants near Pahalgam in 1995 led to various governments including the US state department to impose strict travel restrictions on the region and the number of visiting tourists declined to almost zero due to safety concerns. The situation is improving albeit slowly. In 2011 the German government along with several other European countries recognizing the improved security situation lifted travel restrictions in the area and the number of domestic tourists visiting has seen a substantial increase. Despite this recognition of an improving situation the US State Department ordered travel restrictions imposed for at least another year in 2014 […]
Rafting the Zanskar from Chilling to Nemo
Published 12:31 am, 11 Aug 2014
Too many travelers arrive in Leh and then spend the rest of their vacation making long drives to visit all the sites. If you want a bit more adventure and want to spend your time outside enjoying one option is a fantastic day of rafting on the Zanskar which is just an hours drive from Leh and about 3 hours of rafting which includes challenging class III rapids. Rafting trips are organized by a number of tour operators in Leh and should cost no more than 1500 Rs a person. The first trips start in June and the last trips are taken in September. The best time to go is in middle to late July when the river sees its peak flows from glacial run off upstream. It is 28km of rafting from the put-in at Chilling to the take out at the junction of the Indus and Zanskar at Nemo. It’s a speedy ride down the river with almost continuous rapids. Your guide will provide you a rafting helmet, wetsuit and booties before giving you a brief set of instructions on how to oar and safety procedures if you are thrown overboard. The water is cold and silty coming […]
Cycling the Worlds’s Highest Motorable Road – Khardung La
Published 1:03 am, 9 Aug 2014
Khardung La at a height of 18,380 ft is the world’s highest motorable road. The pass traverses the Ladahk Range as it connects the city of Leh and the Indus Valley to the Nubra Valley. The views from the pass of the Zanskar Range across the Indus valley to the southwest and the Karakoram Range to the northeast are superb. Khardung La makes great day trip from Leh and the easiest way to reach it is to join one of the organized biking tours. Several tour operators in Leh will take you to the top of the pass and provide you with a mountain bike to enjoy the 40km (24 mile) ride back to town. The price in July 2014 was approximately 1300Rs. Day trips to Khardung La typically start around 11am but be sure to book a day in advance so that the required permit can be obtained. Most companies take pretty good care of their mountain bikes and will provide helmets and biking gloves as well. It’s about a two hours drive to the top. The only possible stopping point is the military checkpoint at South Pullu at 15,300 feet. South Pullu also has a small dhaba (road […]
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