The unsung heroes of the "highest motorable road in the world"...the roadbuilders of Keylong.
The Manali - Leh highway is now a "must do cult" for motorcyclists and tourists the world over and also a crucial military road for the Indian Armed Forces.
Convoys of trucks often numbering into hundreds, dozens of tourist vehicles and several dozens of motorcyclists ply daily on this incredible road.
However the link is fragile and landslides, moving glaciers and falling rocks often close it suddenly and without warning.
A brave band of men, ill equipped and tortured by the harsh sun and cold toil ceaselessly to keep it open. Their faces blackened by the constant smoke from the tar fires their only mechanisation often is the road roller. Everything else is done by hand and painfully!
Hundreds lose their lives to nature every year.
This is a tribute to the men of the Border Roads who keep this fragile ribbon of black open for 6 months of the year before the snows of the Himalayas close it down from October of the previous year to June the next year!
Critiques | Translate
Marcie (345) 2004-07-23 22:01
Great shot. Like a mirror image, it has a great composition. Well done, Vijay!
AdrianW (2274) 2004-07-23 23:33
Lovely shot! I really like the feeling of work being done, and slightly dull colours set it off perfectly. The mountains provide a stunning backdrop to the scene too. My only suggestion would be to maybe try and sharpen the closest men a little more. I think I'd also have preferred to see the whole of the nearest man's foot and the whole wheel on the barrow. That said, neither of those thoughts can detract from this wonderful image! :-D
burdallet (0) 2004-07-24 0:06
This is a great shot about an interesting matter .. in particulary due to the method used to built the road at this altitude
spence (65) 2004-07-24 1:00
Wonderful documentary shot Vijay and an interesting note. I really like the light, and the composition. Their "daily life" is so different from mine and I must say, I don't envy them their work, except for the stunningly beautiful environment they work in. Is it too frivolous to suggest this for the Scavenger Hunt "group of four"? :)
Galeota (10338) 2004-07-24 3:07
Very good photograph, well exposed and composed. Thank you also for the very interesting note.
pourre (543) 2004-07-24 4:21
Great and interesting shot, good composition, well exposed !
gg01 (355) 2004-07-24 4:43
Sur l'instant j'ai pensé à Chamonix, avec PACCARD et BALMAT qui montrent le Mont Blanc.
Très bien vu.
Over moment thought of Chamonix, with PACCARD and BALMAT which show the Mount Blanc. Very well considering.
oochappan (16582) 2004-07-24 5:00
Excellent depht and contrast of colors palet, light-dark-transition, DOF and comp. I like the subject too: working people, good note !
Proxilva (2157) 2004-07-24 5:32
ooh great dramatics in this shot... i love it.. great background for this unbelieve-able work high in the mountains...
bharat (474) 2004-07-24 7:26
What a great Shot Vijay!Keep it up.
richtersl (3546) 2004-07-24 9:26
This is a great shot! I can almost smell the smoke from that fire. Your note and photo are a nice tribute to these men.
Josh69 (1437) 2004-07-25 1:19
Great photo. I like the way you can't see the faces of the workers... makes the photo a bit de-personalised but more interesting. The background is very good... the only nit-pick is that the photo could be a little sharper. But very good work, well done!
sn00zie (2384) 2004-07-25 10:33
brilliant composition. a very strong action picture.
Olga (927) 2004-07-26 4:52
this reminds me pictures from USSR's 1930s... glorified builders of the new communist era :-)
whatever i can say will be just a useless comment from someone sitting at the comfort of a modern office... so i'll take my hat off to salut these guys!!
bfly (5775) 2004-08-01 6:01
now that "photography is not your passion in life" and you shoot such beautiful pictures, one can imagine how you are in motorsports ..how many fractures ? :)..you can guess my question : were there any women as we have seen many of them on the roadworks all the way along Beas?..and, will the Raid be going thru this road ? I hope not..
eleparc (24063) 2004-08-04 3:46
hi vijay, very nice scene you captured here. This is a real TE subject...;-) tha background really adds to the photo IMO.. nice compo;-)
Tibetix (0) 2004-08-06 5:13
an interesting documentary picture... Bravo Vijay...
misha81 (332) 2004-11-06 9:55
anotherr nice shot!!
Bluejeans (64249) 2006-12-20 17:37
Ola Vijay fantastica foto , muito boas as cores , uma grande sensação de movimento !!!!
PeterDF (421) 2009-11-01 8:49
A very captivating photo of these men who toil to keep this mountain road paved and open. Really a great photo...with the men working with somewhat primitive equipment and the great mountains looming above them...it really lends to a wonderful photo.
- Copyright: Vijay Parmar (ttmountainman) (2279)
- Genre: People
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2004-07-17
- Categories: Daily Life
- Camera: SONY DSC-S75
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Theme(s): Snow Peaks [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2004-07-23 21:43
- Favorites: 2 [view]