The Place where the Himalayas, the Karakorams and the Hindu Kush Meet
Have you heard of Jaglot ?
It's a small little nondescript Village around 40 kms from Gilgit town which would have remained as such if not for a Geographical feature that the place holds. This point is located where the mighty Indus meets the Gilgit River in Gilgit Baltistan as the region is now called. This place is considered the meeting of the three mightiest Mountain Ranges in the World, the Himalaya which is home to 9 of the 10 highest Peaks in the World including the highest one Mt. Everest, the jagged Karakorams which is home to the K2 and the third one coming from the North West, the Hindu Kush which is come to the Tirich Mir which at 7708m is the highest Peak outside of the Himalayas-Karakoram Mountain System.
One of the oft asked questions is that is the Karakoram a sub Range of the Himalayas ? The answer is both no and yes and it depends on how you want to answer. They are in pure scientific terms different Ranges but a part of the same Mountain Complex that are referred to as the Great Himalayas.
Technically both are different Ranges as they were formed at different stages of one cataclysmic Event namely the collision/ subduction of the Indian Plate under the Eurasian Plate. Both follow their own separate Thrust lines and to really understand it you really need to get into Plate tectonics and understand stuff as I present to you below. This is taken from A Tectonic framework of the Himalaya, Karakoram and Tibet, and Problems of their Evolution by B F Windley :
“The Himalaya, the Karakoram and Tibet were assembled by the successive accretion to Asia of continental and arc terranes during the Mesozoic and early Tertiary. The Jinsha and Banggong Sutures in Tibet join continental terranes separated from Gondwana. Ophiolites were obducted onto the shelf of southern Tibet in the Jurassic before the formation of the Banggong Suture. The Kohistan--Ladakh Terrane contains an island arc that was accreted in the late Cretaceous on the Shyok Suture and consequently evolved into an Andean-type batholith. Further east this Trans-Himalayan batholith developed on the southern active margin of Tibet without the prior development of an island arc. Ophiolites were obducted onto the shelf of India in the late Cretaceous to Lower Palaeocene before the closing of Tethys and the formation of the Indus--Yarlung Zangbo Suture at about 50 Ma. Post-collisional northward indentation of India at ca. 5 cm a-1 since the Eocene has redeformed this accreted terrane collage; palaeomagnetic evidence suggests this indentation has given rise to some 2000 km of intracontinental shortening. Expressions of this shortening are the uplift of mid-crustal gneisses in the Karakoram on a late-Tertiary breakback thrust, folding of Palaeogene redbeds in Tibet, south-directed thrust imbrication of the foreland and shelf of the Indian Plate, north-directed back-thrusts along the Indus Suture Zone, post-Miocene spreading and uplift of thickened Tibet, giving rise to N--S extensional faults, and strike-slip faults, which allowed eastward escape of Tibetan fault blocks.”
Now coming back to more simpler stuff as in Geographical terms the Karakorams are separated from the Himalayas by the Indus in its Upper Course. However in Ladakh the division is taken as the Shyok instead of the Indus. So when you are in Nubra Valley the Mountains on the other side of Shyok River as the Karakorams and this side as the Himalayas. However some people stick to the classical Indus division and by that norm the Ladakh Range would be part of the Karakorams and not the Himalayas. By the same definition Leh would be in the Karakorams and not the Himalayas.
However this ambiguity disappears once the Shyok River merges with the Indus at a place called Keris near the town of Skardu. The Nubra river also joins the Shyok in Nubra Valley and the River widens significantly. The fact that both these Rivers do a complete turnaround of 180 degrees from their original sources indicates the presence of fault lines.
The Hindu Kush on the other hand is separated from the Karakorams by the Gilgit River. The Gilgit rises somewhere between the mountain vastness of the Hindu Kush and the Karakorams. And it passes through Gilgit Town and eventually the joins the Indus at Jaglot. This is where eventually these three mighty Ranges meet. Of all the places that I would want to visit one day this would definitely be on the top.
If the ancients would have been able understand the significance of this location (which we do now due to years of research aided by modern scientific equipment) they would have built some great structures over here I would imagine. However there are still local legends about this place ie where the Indus meets the Gilgit (the legend has no relation to the meeting of the Three Great Ranges). As per the legend Fairies and other such creatures come to have a bath here at midnight or something on that lines.
So do note the name down. I'm sure you would like to go there.