gangles_cathedral
gangles_cathedral

IMG_0069
IMG_0069

IMG_1269
IMG_1269

gangles_cathedral
gangles_cathedral

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Ice cathedrals on the Roof of the World

A montage of recent ice stupas from Ladakh. A well-constructed ice stupa can be up to 40 m high and store 7 million litres of water.

 

The magnificent frozen flying buttresses that add strength and form to stupas match the splendour of mediaeval cathedrals.

ursi_1
ursi_1

ursi_4
ursi_4

ursi_2
ursi_2

ursi_1
ursi_1

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All heart

Ursi is a typical perched village on a steep slope that doesn't appear to have been much impacted by time. It is as it has been for centuries. The villages showed us an extraordinary artificial icefall which exhibited the best of their resourcefulness and ingenuity. Over butter tea they remarked to us that they had nothing except heart. 

StupaStep1
StupaStep1

StupaStep2
StupaStep2

StupaStep4
StupaStep4

StupaStep1
StupaStep1

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How to build an ice stupa

Over the last five years Ladakhi ice engineers have learnt to counter the extreme cold environment and developed a unique engineering skill.