Manali Leh Highway status 2019 as of now is closed. The road was shut down for all kind of vehicular traffic in mid October after it started to snow at all passes en route. Like previous years, this will remain to be a dedicated post where I will update the status of the highway and it’s condition the next season. For recent updates and pictures, I will request you to please check the Forum Thread, Manali Leh Road Status 2019. You can also scroll towards the bottom of this page for latest news on Manali Leh road opening date.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – OPEN
Update: June 30th
Sharing updates sent by travelers about road conditions on Manali Leh route and in Ladakh as well.
Just got to Keylong last night (Thursday),Vibhor nailed the current conditions, but we will add a couple of extra points. Trip took longer than expected, we did Leh-Pang (good cheap acccommodation) and then onto Keylong next day. There was some ice on lachulung-la but it was easily possible by bike. Road from Pang to Sarchu was rough generally, but Baralacha la was the hard point. No ice, but deep holes/very rough and a river down the road at one point . We had a clear run through, but talked to one group that had to wait an hour when a snow wall collapsed. Re small cars we saw a few, but they must have really struggled, on the rough road and taken a battering. We also had one deep- ish stream crossing on the run down into Keylong.
In summary. Full on, but good fun and best split up into 2 shorter days, stopping in either Pang or Sarchu.”
Phase 1: Road Conditions in Ladakh
Started from Leh on 14th June around 10 AM and reached Hunder at 4 PM. There was bit of a jam at Khardung La due to 1 bottleneck [Post Khardung La] which delayed us by almost 1 hour.
Visited Turtuk village on 15th and last village [Thang – no visit, only saw it from last army checkpost]. Started return journey from Hunder to Leh 6.30 AM. Weather started turning cloudy while we were heading to Khardung La top. At Khardung La top, it had started to snow (not very heavy though).
Reached Leh at 11.30 PM without any trouble.
Rested in Leh on 17th June as second phase of my travel was going to be a long one [Leh -> Tso Moriri -> Jispa -> Manali].
Phase 2: Road Conditions from Leh to Manali
Started from Leh around 9 AM on 18th June. Weather was bad and it was raining in Leh. It kept raining till we reached Upshi checkpost. Post that, till Chumathang, weather was cloudy and rainy (mixed with light snowfall). At Chumathang, there was a bit heavier snowfall with strong winds. However, weather started clearing up as we headed for Karzok [Tso Moriri].
Reached Karzok around 3.30 PM.
Started from Karzok for Jispa at 8 AM [got a bit late as I had cold start trouble with my vehicle]. Will come straight to Baralacha La condition as it looks like most people want to know how is this pass.
On 10th when I had crossed Baralacha La from Jispa, there was plenty of snow/ice on road itself. This time, there was no snow/ice on the road itself. However, the snow walls were still huge and there were plenty of stretches where two small cars can barely pass each-other. As this road has been thrown open for all kind of vehicles now, there were plenty of trucks coming in both directions which makes this stretch bad. To make matters worse, there is no presence of BRO/Policy/Army on the entire stretch. We got stuck at 3 choke points due to trucks in opposite directions.
Had to manage the traffic ourselves with couple of truck drivers. I have found truck drivers very understanding compared to private vehicles and they understand better when they need to move back and let other vehicles pass. Finally, we were able to reach Jispa at 8.30 PM after being at Baralcha La stretch for more than 2 hours.
Took a night halt at Padma Lodge and started for Manali at 7 AM. This time Rohtang traffic was very well managed and number of vehicles had also dropped considerably. We reached Manali at 12.15 PM while last time we took 6 hours just to reach Rohtang top from Solang valley.
Update: June 17th
Manali Leh route was declared open again but there is a lot of snow at passes which is making it extremely difficult for people to travel. Below are a few updated I received from 3 different people who traveled on the road last week. Another important thing to remember is that a quota has been allotted to Beyond Rohtang Permit as well for now. The exact number of the permit is not yet known but it is close to around 500. Will this remain applicable for the entire year will get decided later in the season but for now, you will have to struggle to get Beyond Rohtang permit as well. These are booked for several days in advance and average wait time is of 3 to 4 days.
Beyond Rohtang Permit is also available in Black for Rs. 2500 per permit.
“Hi Vargis! I’m in leh today. It’s been a very distressing journey. I would not recommend anyone to come from manali side yet! As I was stuck at Baralacha for 12hr and their is very heavy snow fall from last few days and road is frozen with ice. We managed to get to sarchu at night around 11pm but all the cars were stuck and people were rescued next day by BRO ambulance. Road situation is very bad and road is anyway declared open but BRO recommends not to travel as weather is very bad. Snow fall starts at zing zing bar, Baralacha, sarchu and pang. We had to put our bikes on truck from sarchu to leh cause of the weather. “
“I reached at zing zing bar around 11am yesterday from there we were asked to wait since there’s was a military convoy suppose to pass, it did pass but one commercial truck carrying steel bars got stuck at baralacha and clearing of it took around 12hrs. Some bikers were allowed to go ahead from zing zing bar but they got stuck at baralacha around 7pm and then snowfall started so everyone had to return back to Zing zing bar. Though the route was cleared the truck again got stuck ahead and the route got jamed again. Hopefully it must be fully cleared today. Snow at baralacha is around 30-40feet and very risky after sunset.”
“Yes stranded at Baralacha La for more than 10hr and literally frozen to death. BRO didn’t open the road initially yet as the weather is worse on the top hill. It might have improved now, I’m not sure about that. Nubra valley had a avalanche slides day on Friday due to which more than 150 tourist were stuck and BRO recovered them. If planning to go from Srinagar keep in mind that from sonmarg till zozzila pass its very cold and huge traffic. Manali to Rohtang is same too. “
Update: June 12th
Baralacha La has again been closed temporarily. Everyone on their way to Ladakh is stuck in Manali or Jispa right now. On top of it, weather is closing in and more snow is expected in next couple of days. There will also be plenty of rains around Manali. Rohtang, Baralacha La, Sach Pass and Kunzum Pass will definitely get some snow this week. Please postpone any plans you had of traveling on Manali Leh route for this week at least and wait for the weather to clear. Below are a few pictures of Baralacha La right now. See the amount of snow and ice on the road and it will probably get worse this week. Even cars like 2WD Scorpio and 1 Mercedes GLA 250 were stuck at the pass.
Update: June 10th
After what can truly be called as an agonizing wait, Manali Leh Highway was declared open today for the year 2019. The opening of the pass comes a good 3 weeks late this year in comparison to its opening in previous years. The heavy snowfall that came along with the winter season delayed the opening of almost every road and pass across the Himalayas and Manali Leh route was no exception either. Both the locals and people planning a trip to Ladakh have been patiently waiting for BRO to give a green signal and it finally happened today.
As per the Border Road Task Force (BRTF) Commander Colonel Uma Shankar, BRO has completed snow-clearing operation of the road which remains block due to the accumulation of snow during winter at various passes en route. The route was freed of snow a few days ago actually but the local authorities were assessing the situation and determining whether or not the road was safe for civilian traffic to be allowed.
Tourist season in Ladakh is actually already on and a lot of people have already traveled there from the Srinagar side. But it is usually the Manali route that brings the full flow of tourists in the region each year. With the road now being open, thousands of people will be traveling to Ladakh by either their motorcycles, cars or public transport. It is not just the tourists actually. This road also serves as a lifeline for the people of Ladakh region ensuring essential supplies as well as a stocking for winters when the region remains cut off from the rest of the country.
With that being said, the situation at Rohtang is a bit out of hands right now. There is a daily and massive traffic jam at the pass which results in a wait time of 3 to 4 hours for vehicles (see images below). With the opening of Manali Leh route, things are bound to get a lot worse. Manali Kaza road will be opening this week as well which will result in even more traffic. Getting a permit to visit and cross Rohtang Pass too is a task in itself right now.
In the end, however, if a trip to Ladakh was on your plans for this year and Manali route was a part of your itinerary then now is the time for you to make the dream come true. My advice would be to give it at least 2 to 3 weeks more before you travel on the road though. BRO is still working on stabilizing the road which means that temporary closures can still happen. Condition of the road too remains to be a bit bad in the first few weeks. Hopefully, if you waited, things with Rohtang permit too will get better.
How to Plan your trip from Manali to Leh
If you are thinking of a trip to Ladakh next year then I would suggest you to read through How to Plan a Trip to Leh Ladakh – Complete Travel Guide. In this article, I have covered in details almost every aspect of traveling to Ladakh. Reading this, you will have information on things you must carry; clothes you should pack; planning your itinerary; things you must see and where you can stay. Some of the other things that you must know and covered in the article above are on how to prepare your vehicle for the trip; how to handle acute mountain sickness in Ladakh; what you should keep in mind while traveling with children and elders.
A few articles that will provide you information on Manali Leh highway are listed below. Go through these posts and prepare yourself for the trip as you wait for the road to open.
- Manali to Leh Road Map With Distance
- Manali Leh Highway Guide : Map and route explanation
- Tourist Places on Manali Leh Highway
- Accommodation on Manali Leh Highway
- Best Time to Travel from Manali to Leh
- Manali to Leh – Minimum Days Required
- Manali to Leh – Available Modes of Transport
- How to Deal With Acute Mountain Sickness In Ladakh
Update: June 9th
Received these images in a Whatsapp group today. You can see the amount of vehicles traveling to Rohtang Pass. Traffic Jams are lasting up to 4 hours and even the Beyond Rohtang is not available anymore because thousands have already bought it. And this is the situation when Manali Leh and Manali Kaza routes are not yet open. Once that happens, there will even be a greater number of people traveling causing much worse traffic situation.
For more recent updates and pictures, please view the forum thread Manali Leh Highway Status and Condition 2019.
Update: May 30th
Rohtang Pass opens today. Manali Leh highway expected to open around 10th to 15th June.
Update: May 26th
Rohtang Pass was declared open last week but only for locals. There is a lot of snow at the pass and road widening is still required. It will be a wile before tourist movement is allowed.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update: May 18th
Opening of Rohtang Pass continues to get delayed this year due to heavy snow and resulting landslides. It is still raining and snowing at the pass. Earlier this month, the road was opened until Marhi but a landslide now has blocked that road too. There were 2000 tourists stranded on the road yesterday after a landslide blocked their way back to Manali. For now, assume that Rohtang Pass will probably open only either towards the end of May or early June. Manali Leh Highway this year may not open before June 15th. Even if BRO is able to clear the snow, this landslide will raise questions on the stability of the road. Authorities will not open it unless they are completely sure of its safety. For now, the road is completely blocked.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update: May 5th
From Manali side, the road till Marhi has been freed of snow and tourists are being allowed. The Rohtang permit window too has been opened online as of today. Please note though that you will still not be able to reach the top; and definitely cannot cross Rohtang over to the other side at this time. You will only get allowed till Marhi and Rohtang top is another 16 odd kilometers from there. The entire road from Manali to Keylong is expected to get opened in the week of May 14th at latest. Manali Leh highway as of now is expected to open in June 1st week.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update: April 28th
The heavy amount of snow at Rohtang Pass is causing delay in its opening. It would seem that Rohtang may not get open before May 10th this year which would further push the opening of Leh highway to around June 10th. Please see the FORUM POST for some pictures of snow clearing operation at Rohtang pass and you will see the huge walls of snow on both side of the road.
Srinagar Leh highway however was declared open today. There is a lot of snow on that route as well with high chances of avalanches at Zojila.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update: April 21st
Rohtang La, Kunzum La and Baralacha La all received fresh snow last week which brought the snow clearing operation to a standstill. It has now however been resumed and Rohtang Pass is expected to open in May 1st week. The entire route from Manali to Leh will be open for civilian traffic by May end or June 1st week.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update: April 7th
As I updated last week, the reports of Manali Leh highway getting declared open in April 2nd week were not correct. It is April 7th already and the work hasn’t even reached halfway to Rohtang Pass. Meanwhile, in the wake of oncoming elections, Election Commission of India has requested BRO to allow them to use Rohtang tunnel on short term basis to help facilitate the movement of manpower and machinery on the other side of the pass.
As of now, Rohtang is expected to open in May 1st week and Manali Leh route will get open sometime around May 3rd week. This is however only an estimate right now and there is a high chance that the opening dates may get pushed even further. There have been times when Manali Leh Highway did not open before June 1st week.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update: March 24th
There were a couple of news updates last week by GreaterKashmir and TribuneIndia claiming that BRO is planning to declare Manali Leh route open by April 2nd week. I am not sure about the authenticity of these reports but if it turns true, then it would be an all time record. Manali Leh highway has never been declared open so early. Even last year, when there was hardly any snow anywhere, the road was opened only in the month of May. This year, there is several feet of snow accumulated at top of both Rohtang and Baralacha La. As a matter of fact, the entire stretch is still experiencing light spells of snowfalls.
For now, my advice would be to not plan traveling this way before Mid-May. Srinagar Leh route may get opened in April but Manali to Leh will most certainly not. Even if it does, it would be far from being safe to travel upon by tourists.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update: March 10th
As the winter season starts to recede, BRO is now getting ready to begin snow clearing work on Manali Leh highway. The first step would be to clear the snow from Rohtang Pass and connect Lahaul Valley with Manali. BRO is expecting that they should be able to start the operation from Gulaba within a week but that can only happen if the weather holds. There is still a warning of more snowfall to occur in the coming days which can very well delay the work and opening of the pass.
Meanwhile, from the Lahaul Valley side, work will start in a day or two from Satingri toward Tandi and Sissu to connect the road with the Rohtang tunnel in the north portal. The tunnel can be used in emergency cases to transport locals from Lahaul to Kullu Valley. Similarly, BRO workforce and machinery is moving from Udaipur ahead toward Kolang to start clearing the snow towards Sach Pass.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update: March 3rd
Last year at this time, on Manali Leh route, the snow clearing operation started in early March itself and by April 1st week, the road was open for traffic.
Situation this year however is entirely different. It continues to snow heavily all over Himalayas and more snow is expected. Opening of all roads and passes this year will definitely get delayed. As of now, in terms of Srinagar Leh route, do not expected it to open any earlier than late April. Rohtang Pass will probably not open by Mid May and Manali Leh highway in early June. Manali Kaza road will not be open before late May. This however is just an estimate for now and can get changed as the weather progresses.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update February 18th
There have been heavy snowfall in last couple of weeks all across the hill. Avalanches were reported last week at several places in Lahaul valley triggered by the widespread snowfall. The petrol pump at Tandi was hit and damaged by the snowfall. Please see Forum Thread for a picture of the petrol pump after it was hit by the avalanche. It is not extremely bad though and I am sure the petrol station will again be up and running by the time the road opens.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update February 11th
The recent spell of snow in early Feb followed by incessant rains near the foothills have seen far too great snow in entire Himalayan region as compared to previous years. More snowfall is expected in this week and throughout the month of Feb. Definitely expected a delayed opening of the highway this year.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update February 4th
Snowfall this year has been way more than expected. An avalanche in Ladakh was reported in January that killed 10 local workers. In all possibility, there will be a delay in opening of roads and passes all across. For now, the opening date of Manali Leh Highway in 2019 is not expected to be any sooner than early June.
Manali Leh Highway Status 2019 – Update November 26th
BRO has been clearing snow for local movement between Manali and Lahaul valley but even that operations has stopped now. The road has now turned very slippery at several places. Strong freezing cold winds have been dumping snow on the highway; due to which it has become very difficult to keep it open any longer. Authorities have been keeping it out of bounds for tourists for weeks; but even the local traffic movement will cease now. Some locals have been crossing the pass on foot but that option too will be gone soon.
Manali Leh Highway Opening Date 2019
There is really no set opening date because it entirely depends on the weather; and how fast BRO is able to clear the snow after winter ends. There have been instances when the road remained closed well into the month of June. On the other hand, in the year 2018, there was not much of snow anywhere on the route. Passes like Rohtang and Baralacha did not even receive half of the snow they usually do. Due to this, vehicles started to ply on Manali Leh road in the month of April itself.
Historically though, it is late May or early June; which can be called as a safe time to assume for opening of the highway. To be on a safer side, plan your trip only after June 10th. The road may open earlier than this but will be in terrible state. There could be temporary closures as well in earlier days of opening; that can last from a few hours to couple of days. Giving a few weeks after opening before you planned your trip will ensure that the road is at least stable; and comparatively safer to travel.
Is Manali Leh Highway Open Now?
No. Manali Leh highway has already been declared closed; and will not reopen until at least May next year. Manali has already experienced it’s first snowfall near Gulaba and it is only a matter of days before Rohtang Pass is closed as well.
Please stay tuned to the forum thread Manali to Leh Road Status 2019 for latest updates on the highway. If you have any questions, or need my help in planning your trip to Ladakh; please feel free to ask in the comments section below; or at our Community Forum; and I will be glad to answer.