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  • It is said that the best taste of adventure can be tasted on the soil of Ladakh. A mystery land for some and a moonland for some, Ladakh has been always the ultimate destination for all. I am sure most of you might have already ticked that mark on your bucket list. But for the ones who are still searching for some adventure then this is definitely the call for you. For the adventure seekers, Ladakh is a no match to any other rugged regions of India. Adventure in the Trans-Himalayan has its own taste and meaning which will be treasured for life. Blessed with high altitudes ranges, scenic trails, high pass and deep gorges you will be amazed by this place.

    Nestled at 3,000 meters above sea level and explicitly located between the Karakoram and Himalayan ranges, Ladakh offers a variety of adventure sports. Mountain biking, river rafting, trekking are a common sight in Ladakh. Bring out the beast in you as you indulge in a plethora of activities in this region. You will also be amazed at the sight of scenic vistas, landscapes, gorgeous White Mountains. Feel the thrill as you take a jeep ride through the rugged terrain and the musical and lyrical winds caressing your hair. Let’s check out these 10 adventurous activities in Ladakh and get ready for the upcoming adventure.

    Here are some of the best adventure activities in Ladakh:

  • 01Biking in Ladakh

    Biking in Ladakh

    For some it can be an adventure but for other biking in Ladakh is the most exciting experience of a lifetime. It is said that you can’t consider yourself as a true rider if you have not ridden on the rugged terrains of Ladakh. Biking is considered as the most favourite and memorable trips of life during Ladakh tour.

    Each year thousands of riders come to explore this magnificent land on a road trip. Snaking your bike in ladakh through the criss-cross terrain is a great experience for all. Beating high altitude sickness, riding at 18,000 feet is all at once very rewarding. Experience the joy of riding through the highest passes of the world. Ride your beast through the mountain tracks while enjoying the amazing view of the region. This is definitely going to be one hell of a ride.


    Manali to Leh Bike Trip from Delhi 2018

    Manali to Leh Bike Trip from Delhi 2018

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    O32,800

  • 02Chadar Trek

    Chadar Trek

    While you are vacationing in Ladakh, Chadar trek is something which you would not want to miss. Considered to be one of the most interesting treks in the world, thousands of people travel to Ladakh to enjoy this amazing trek. After all what could be more fascinating then trekking on a thin sheet of ice? Chadar trek is one of the popular winter treks in Ladakh.

    ‘Chadar’ refers to the blanket or sheet of the rivers as the River Zanskar transforms itself from a rapid river into a blanket of ice during the winters. Chadar can be best enjoyed during the winters. This time is the best for the trekkers and the adventurer who dare to take some exciting challenges and also enjoy the mountains.  Offering some of the stunning sights Chadar trek is one of the most preferred treks in the world. So this time don’t miss your chance to try this amazing trek in Ladakh.


    Chadar Trek - Frozen River Zanskar Trek - 2018

    Chadar Trek - Frozen River Zanskar Trek - 2018

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    O17,800

  • 03Camping in Ladakh

    Imagine a quite night under the blinking stars upon you shining bright, Sound’s fun right? Well then make it all real while camping at the top of the mountains in Ladakh. This is another adventurous activity which is becoming a favorite.  Located at an average altitude of 11500 ft above sea level, Ladakh is the perfect getaway from the oppressive heat of the plains. Camping in Ladakh is an ideal wayto get close with nature and explore its beauty.

    As Ladakh is already known for its majestic beauty, camping lets you explore this place to its core. Whether you are under the clear blue sky or the dazzling night sky, you will totally end up in an alternate world away from the busy life. Spend some time in the bosom of nature while camping in Ladakh.
  • 04Camel Safari in Nubra Valley

    While you are visiting this Moon Land there is another adventure which you can’t afford to miss. Camel Safari is slowly becoming one of the most sought of activity in Nubra Valley, Ladakh. Ladakh is the only place in India where you can enjoy a camel safari double humped camel. Riding on a double humped camel and scaling the striking landscapes of the high altitude desert is one of a kind experience. 

    This camel safari is very popular in the Diskit and Hunder valley. Camel safari in Bubra Valley will take you through the enchanting sand dunes and the nooks and corners of the valley which is usually impossible to reach by vehicle.


  • 05Quad Biking in Nubra Sand Dunes

    If you are thirsty for some more adventure then Quad biking in Nubra Valleywill definitely quench your thirst. Known as the rooftop of the world, Ladakh has been attracting the adventure seekers for this one of a kind adventure activity. What could be a better adventure then exploring the highest motorable road with an ATV ride? 

    Just your kind of adventure right! Well, quad biking is another favourite activity for the thrill seekers. Marvel at the sight of the natural beauty of this region with an ATV ride. Start your amazing ride from the shimmering roads of Manali and explore the amazing Nubra Valley. Rising through the crises-cross path will definitely be a challenge for you. But when its adventure, the challenge is the thrill!


  • 06Rafting in Zanskar

    If you want to enjoy the beauty of the mountains while gushing through the waters then Ladakh is definitely the place for you. River rafting is an adventurous sport which is very famous among the people in Ladakh. Running down the valley, cutting through gorges and combating several obstacles makes river rafting in Zanskar is one of the challenging water sports in India.

    Traverse through the deep waters amidst deep canyons and soaring snow-covered peaks and feel the thrill. River rafting is very prominent in the Indus River and Zanskar River in Ladakh. Break through the water while enjoying the scenic view of the region. As it goes the adventure begins. To experience the thrill, one must do rafting in Zanskar river on a Ladakh tour
  • 07Ladakh Marathon

    Well while you are in Ladakh there is another activity which you can’t afford to miss. Want to take a part at the highest marathon in the world then here is your chance. This time head out to Ladakh and experience the highest marathon in the world at a height of 11,500 to 17,618 feet.  Covering a distance of 72 km this Marathon is the perfect race to test your limits. 

    Unlike other marathons, the Ladakh Marathon you will have to arrive at least a week earlier in advance to acclimatize for the race. As you will be running at a high altitude you will have to get acclimatized. This unique experience allows the runners to run with the local Ladakhis through the most amazing landscapes offering striking vistas of mountains, rivers and valleys.  Head out for this unique adventure in Ladakh.


  • 08Mountain Biking

    Well if you are looking for some hard core adventure then mountain biking is the perfect option for you. This is another adventure activities in Ladakh which is a must try for you.  Ladakh is a paradise for the mountain bikers. What could be a better way to explore the highest motorable road Khardungla Pass while cycling? Cycle through the amazing beauty of the region and pass through the moonland like plateaus of Ladakh.

    Ride to the most beautiful lake in the world Pangong Lake or bike along the Zanskar & Indus River exploring the cultures, lifestyles and the ancient Buddhist monasteries. You will never have enough of this place. Cycling through the zig zag road and the serene Nubra valley will let you explore the beauty of this place to its core. And the most of all you get a chance to increase your stamina as you will be cycling through the high roads and passes. Add some memories while you visit this amazing land and get a chance to learn about the local people and their culture.


  • 09Snow Leopard Trek

    Snow Leopard Trek

    There is no doubt in that Ladakh is definitely the dream destination for all. This land is not just known for its incandescent beauty but also for the adventure activities here. A lot of thrill seekers rush to this place to try some of the best adventure activities in Ladakh while enjoying the vivid landscape. Snow Leopard trek is another trek which is a must do activity for you in Ladakh. 

    The Snow Leopard Trek, which is one of the prevalent winter treks in the Ladakh district, lies into a region where human accommodation evaporates and delivers a wild extend of tough mountains specked with creatures like snow panthers, Tibetan wolves, blue sheep, horned sheep and Eurasian Brown Bear. The trek enables one to get to know the old stories of Rumbak Valley. And the best part is you will be surprise by the twist and turns which you have to take while trekking.


    Snow Leopard Trek 2017, Ladakh

    Snow Leopard Trek 2017, Ladakh

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  • 10Play Polo

    Well this game might be a little different than the usual but polo is another sport which is very famous among the people in Ladakh. In Ladakh, each significant village has a polo ground and the diversion is a vital piece of the social texture of the Ladakhi people where music, particularly drums, go with the scoring of every objective.  

    The Ladakh polo game is quite different from the one which is played internationally.  It is wilder and free flowing with two twenty minutes halves of play and a ten minute break in between. The point is to score by driving a little wooden ball into the adversary's net utilizing a long wooden hammer. Sound’s very different right. Well then if you are that sporty person and love some daring adventure then polo play is a must do activity for you.


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Adventure in Ladakh

Trekking in Ladakh

Biking in Ladakh

Attractions

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Pangong Lake

Rather, the most sought after tourist destination is Pangong Tso in Ladakh region. It is the highest among the high altitude lakes in India which is filled with saline water but provides some awe-struck moments to the visitors with the unbelievable phenomenon of changing colours quite a number of times a day.

The reflections of the towering Himalayan peaks in the water add more charm to the lake. Currently, Pangong Tso is the favorite location for tourists as the banks of the lake give soothing bed to relax and the nearby places are enhanced by the beauty of this particular lake. The quiet lake is 134 km in length and 5 km in width is situated at an altitude of 14270 meters. But the major share of the lake lies in the area of China. Now, its recognition is spread everywhere in the world because it is termed as a wetland of international importance under the Ramsar Convention.

The highly saline water does not accommodate any water species not even micro-organisms. But the banks of the lake give space for several birds and animals very rarely seen in the other parts of India. It is an important breeding ground for many migratory birds as well.

Height: The lake is located at an altitude of 4250 meters above the sea level.

Location: Pangong Tso is easily accessible as it can be reached after a five hour drive from Leh and the travel would be on a rough and dramatic mountain road. You will cross the villages of Shey and Gya during the tour and go through Chang La as well.

Best time to visit: The months from May to September are the ideal time to visit the lake as the other seasons may cause challenges due to the heavy snowfall.

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Nubra Valley

Something divine makes Nubra Valley close to heart and it is not an exaggeration but a fact that experienced and shared by the countless tourists visited the paradisiacal location in Jammu and Kashmir. Without touching the spectacular roads of Nubra Valley, a Ladakh tour will not be complete. The tri armed valley has Diskit Village as its capital. Ldumra, a magnificent name is the original name of the valley as the local scholars insist. Ldumra means Valley of Flowers. The large valley is formed after the merging of Shyok River with Nubra or Siachen River causing the separation of the Ladakh and the Karakoram Ranges. The valley is located 10000 feet that is 3048 meters above mean sea level and those who cross the Khardung La Pass can easily come to Nubra Valley from Leh.

Except the river beds, every other place in the valley shows scant vegetation and low precipitation levels. Most of the villages in the valley are occupied by Nubra skat speakers and in the villages, one can find lush greenery and farming which happen through the regular irrigation. Diskit is the place where native people are seen in abundance and Diskit Monastery is the entre of attraction as well. The Shyok River flowing on one side of Diskit has a captivating effect on the visitors. Nubra Valley unwinds a lot of surprising sights when you visit it and an unbelievable fact is that the valley was open to the public till Hunder until 2010. Beyond Hunder, it was the greener region in the lower altitude where the Turtuk village exists. Till 2010, the Government did not allow tourists to mesmerize themselves in the magnificent beauty of Turtuk where numerous apricot trees and other vegetation along with the tribal community were preserved as a virgin.

Height: 3048 meters above the sea level

Location: The paradisiacal Nubra Valley is located at a distance of 140 km from Leh and the main road access to the valley is through Khardung La pass where you have to show the photocopies of your travel permit to the soldiers camping.

Best time to visit: The months from June to September is the perfect period to visit Nubra Valley

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Khardung La

Controversies regarding the proclamation that Khardung La is the highest motorable pass in the world is not yet diminished but Ladakh travelers still believe that it is the highest and most adventurous pass in the world. Despite the controversies, Khardung La keeps on attracting hundreds of adventure seekers every year, be it bikers, trekkers or visitors. Nestled amidst the most reverberating surrounding, the ‘Pass of Lower Castle’ is located at an altitude of 17582 feet. Near to the pass, the collection of awesome valleys will lure you and along with the natural extravaganzas, the Tibetan prayer flags are an additional charm.

The pass was constructed in the year of 1976 and later in 1988, it was opened to public and from then on, the pass was inviting uncountable bikers, trekkers and tourists. It is maintained by the Border roads Organization as the pass is highly significant and important to India because it was once used to carry supplies to the Siachen Glacier. Recently, Khardung La became the hot potato of the town with a happy news that a ten member team of visually impaired people is going to conquer the pass through cycling in 2017.

Height: Khardung La is located at an altitude of 5359 meters. But there is an incorrect proclamation on the signboards appear here saying that the height of the pass is 18379 feet.

Location: The highest motorable pass in Ladakh is lying about 39 kms away from Leh. By road, one can reach the pass. The first 24 kms of the road are paved and from there to the North Pullu check post, the 15 kms of the road are filled with loose rock, dirt and occasional rivulets formed after the melting of snow.

Best time to visit: The season between May to October is the best time to visit Khardung La.

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Tso Moriri Lake

It won’t be exceeding at all how much you describe the beauty of Tso Moriri in Ladakh, a highly protected lake in Changthang Region and a significant portion of Tso Moriri Wetland Conservation Reserve.  It is the largest of all high altitude lakes in India especially in Ladakh and is located at an altitude of 4522 meters above the sea level. The length comes to 26 km north to south and 3 to 5 km is the width and the water is wholly brackish. 

The water to feed the lake comes from the springs and melted snow from the nearby mountains. There are two major stream systems to lead the water to the lake. One in the north part of the lake and the other comes in the southwest part. Huge, extensive marshes are seen at both the entrances of the lake. Rupshu Valley, a breathtaking area is the guardian of Tso Moriri along with an array of the lofty Himalayan Mountains in the surrounding.

The number of people come to witness the beauty of this splendid lake is lesser when compared to that of Pangong Lake. It is because of the secluded location of the lake. Hence, it is a favorite home town for many migratory birds. They come to breed here especially birds like great- crested grebe, the brown-headed gull and the Brahmin duck. The rare Himalayan hares are also abundantly seen near the lake. Thus, the declaration of the lake as a reserved area is a right option to protect these species from extinction. Less human interference would keep their lives strong.

Height: The lake is situated at an altitude of 4522 meters.

Location: You can reach Tso Moriri via road from Leh. It is 150 kms away from Leh Airport. Kalka Railway station is the nearest one to the lake. You will get buses and taxis from the station as well.

Best time to visit: May, June, July and August are the peak season when tourists come to Tso Moriri in large numbers and other months will be filled with snow and have extreme cold conditions.

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Shanti Stupa

The white dome of Shanti Stupa is clearly visible from a far distance when you are on a tour of Leh. Peace Pagoda got its name like that because of many reasons mainly the silence persists in and around the pagoda always. This Buddhist prayer center is the most beloved attraction in Jammu and Kashmir. At a height of 4267 meters, the two storied stupa stands holding its head high and overlooks the bustling Leh town. The uneven mountain terrains in the surrounding gives the pagoda a remarkable shining. It is at a location which is 5 km away from Leh town and one who visits the stupa has to climb five hundred steps. The exotic view of the Himalayan peaks turns the beauty of the stupa also, a peace lover would dedicate his life to have such overjoying moments.

History

The stupa was constructed by both Japanese and Ladakh Buddhists. The construction was started in 1983, many Buddhists and Indian Government officials have supervised the procedures throughout.

Structure of the stupa

Among the two structures of the pagoda, the first level depicts the central relief of Dharmachakra which has deer on each side and the turning wheel of Dharma also has a golden image of Buddha at the center. The second level displays images which show the birth of Budhha and the death as well. In addition, both the level have smaller images of Buddha meditating. The stupa came into existence in order to spread the word of peace and harmony among people and it came into establishment as a commemoration of the valuable 2500 years of Buddhism.

Location: Any one can reach the stupa via road from Leh, only 5 kms from the town, a walk of fifteen minutes would require.

Timings: 05:00 am to 09:00 pm

Highlights: The sunset and sunrise views from the stupa are inevitably beautiful


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Magnetic Hill

Magnetic Hill is still a mystery yet a famed attraction that pulls the adventure lovers on a large scale toward it. A mystifying phenomenon which stunts the science and fiction together and exists as a magic to the normal people visiting here. Magnetic Hill is a trump card of every Ladakh tour because of the awe-struck moments it would promise the travelers. There is a sign board placed which says that the hill defies gravity completely and inviting everyone to experience the magical phenomenon.

 If you keep your vehicle in neutral at a position marked on the road and wait, you will be surprised to see the vehicle starts moving uphill at 10-20 km per hour. And this is the unexplainable feature of Magnetic Hill that confuses the world of science. It is located on Leh-Kargil-Baltic Highway and on the east, the beautiful Sindhu River is flowing calmly. Near the hill there is a Sikh Gurudwara maintained by the Indian Army. Due to the natural attraction as well as the human architectural brilliance, the hill has gained popularity in a short term. 

Not just the vehicles hitting the road but the aircrafts and helicopters crossing the radius which Magnetic Hill comes in would feel the same magnetic effect. If the aircrafts are going on a slow pace, then it starts jerking while they are in the circumference of the hill. So the only solution to escape from the clutches of this phenomenon is that the crafts should move at a greater speed.

Height: Magnetic Hill is located at an elevation of 14000 feet above the sea level.

Location: To reach the hill, you can hit the Leh-Kargil-Baltic National Highway and it is situated at a distance of just 30 kms from Leh town.

Best time to visit: The best time to visit the Magnetic Hill is from June to October.

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Chadar Trek

For some years, adventure seekers all around the world have been talking about Chadar Trek in the Zanskar Region. Until this year, hundreds of people have experienced the thrill hidden and the mind blowing sights around Chadar frozen river. In fact, Chadar Trek is the most sought after and one of the breathtaking treks in the Himalayas. The winter trek is so special for those who are ready to have adventure at the maximum level. 

The river trek starts from Chilling where the river begins to freeze and mostly, travelers choose February as the best time to cross the frozen river as the ice sheets will be comparatively stable. The precarious snow-flakes would pose severe threats during the trek but in some other time, the challenges would be kind to the trekker. The surrounding of the river are completely vertical cliffs tall up to 600 meters. The Zanskar River is a tributary of the Indus and is 5 meters long. 

A trekker would have to cover 16 kms per day to complete the Chadar Trek. Usually, people opt for 10-15 days of trek depending on the climatic conditions persisting here. The temperature at Chadar will come to the lowest at -35 degree Celsius during winter and thus Chadar Trek becomes more intimidating. Approximate trekking distance one would have to cover in total is 75 kms.

Maximum altitude: 11123 feet is the height at which Chadar Trek would lead you to.

Location: To take part in Chadar Trek, one should arrive in Leh and from Leh, the journey starts and goes to Chilling, the beginning of the Zanskar River in the frozen state. From Leh it would take about 65-70 kms to reach Tilad via Chilling, the base camp of the trek.

Best time to visit: January end to February is the best time suitable for trekking in the frozen river of Chadar. Quality and safe trekking gears and highly warm clothes are required.

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Hemis Monastery

The biggest monastery in the North India is Hemis Monastery, one of the must visit attractions in Ladakh region. Set on the foothills of Indus, Hemis Monastery has 200 branches and over 1000 monks are staying there. It belongs to the red sect Brokpa of Buddhist order. Here the young Lamas are trained for the royal monasteries at Leh, Shey and Basgo.

History

Hemis Gompa came into existence 17th century and it was built by Chapgon Gyalshas and from then on the gompa was getting the royal patronage of Ladakh till now. But there is a saying that the monastery was founded by the first incarnation of Stangsang Raspa Nawang Gyatso. After the missing of the head Lama in 1956, a young 12 year old boy from Dalhousie in Himachal Pradesh has been recognized as the head Lama of the gompa.

Structure of the monastery

The biggest monastery in the region has a surprising architecture and the building is quite appreciable. There are a lot of big statues and stupas decorated with stones and also the splendid collection of thankas. The collection of thankas is believed to be the largest and it would be shown to the public once in 11 years.

Location: Hemis Village is located 43 km south of Leh town and it is very easy to reach the monastery by bus or jeep.

Timing: 08:00 am to 01:00 pm and 02:00 pm to 06:00 pm

Entry fee: INR 100

Highlight: Hemis Festival is the prime attraction at the monastery which celebrates the birth anniversary of Guru Rinpoche. The tenth day of the Tibetan lunar month every 12th year is the date of festival.


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Markha Valley Trek

Adventure lovers always had an affection to Markha Valley and still it fulfills the dreams of a trekker or adventure seeker with the unrivalled collection of natural spectacle. Long day trekking tours are offered by a lot of tour providers all over India which promise a journey through the most scenic locations and villages. The awesomely exciting feature of this trek is that it will let the trekker cross two high altitude passes in Ladakh; Gandala La at 4980 meters and Kongmaru La at 5276 meters.

 Being one of the diverse treks in Ladakh region, Markha Valley trek offers a lot of adventurous moments throughout. The barren land of Ladakh and the Buddhist temples found throughout the journey make the trek special. The route winds past the Ladakhi villages and it goes to Hemis National Park where the chances to spot some rare wildlife species are comparably high. The nomadic groups of people will be a unique picture to keep in heart. The symbols of Buddhism like ‘chortens’, stupas, multi colored prayer flags and numerous monasteries narrate the story of Buddhist culture embraced Markha centuries ago. Another interesting fact heard about Markha Valley trek is that it is also called ‘tea house trek’ due to the accommodation provided in parachute tents in most of the villages during the tour.

Maximum altitude: 15000 feet is the maximum altitude the trek will cover.

Location: In most of the cases, the trek starts from Leh. The trail usually goes through Chilling, Skyu and then to Markha. From Markha it would take the trekker to reach Hankar and Nimaling and finally return to Leh. The ideal trekking distance is 75 kms and it would be graded as difficult.

Best time to visit: The months of June, July, August, September and October are recommended as the best time to do Markha Valley trek.

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Stok Kongri Trek

Stok Kangri, Ladakh is one of the most popular places for high altitude trekking in India. Although the beauty of Ladakh draws in innumerable tourists and trekkers from all over the country and the world, the Stok Kangri trek isn’t really suited for anyone and everyone.

It is advisable that only experienced trekkers set out on this expedition as the climatic and geographical conditions of the place may not suit novice or amateur trekkers. Nonetheless, Stok Kangri is one of the most beautiful tourist destinations in the country. It is for this reason that the Stok Kangri trek forms an inevitable experience while trekking in India.

The trek begins from Leh, which is noted for its natural beauty as well as the warm and hospitable people. During the first couple of days of the trek, you can move around Leh, go sightseeing and get acclimatized to the weather of the region. These couple of days will prepare you for the trek ahead. You will next be taken to Chang Ma via Stok Village by road.

The journey from Leh to Stok Village takes you to witness the amiable yet fictional setting which includes lush greenery, glistening snow peaks and scenic splendor of the region in this stretch. On reaching Chang Ma, you reach a snow covered region and begin trekking. You will need to climb on for about three hours. From here you will head on to Manokorma, which is at an elevation of 14200 feet.

During the trek, you will be able to view some very beautiful peaks such as the Gulap Kangri, Parcha Kangri, etc. The base camp of the trek is at an elevation of 16, 300 feet. From here, the journey continues till you reach the Stok Kangri. The rewarding scenery from the top is what draws trekkers from all over the world to high altitude trekking in India. The trek back to Leh is a bit arduous and you may need to be careful while climbing down the mountainous terrain.

Best Season: June - October

Difficulty Level: Medium

Max. Elevation: 5000 m

Number of Days: Maximum 10 days of trek can be done here

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