Khunjerab Pass / Knight Moves

Khunjerab Pass lies between China and Pakistan; between Xinjiang and Baltistan; between Kashgar and Gilgit. At 4700 metres it’s the highest paved international border.

In August 1986 the border had only just opened to non-locals, and we were reaching the end of four long hard months of travel in China, taking the Karakoram Highway into northern Pakistan.

For unknown reasons there were delays and an enforced three-day stay at the Chinese border post, just short of Khunjerab Pass. I recall the place name as Pireli, although it does seem to have been airbrushed from history. Conditions were primitive but of spectacular beauty.

It was here, via my Sony shortwave radio, on BBC World Service, that I first heard of Suzanne Vega

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4 thoughts on “Khunjerab Pass / Knight Moves

  1. I really like the travel context you used to introduce this song! I also have songs that are tied by strong memories to geographical locations, and your post made me realize it might be quite fun to write about one sometime.

    That being said, would you consider writing more about your travels; both memories and your contemporary excursions? This post reminded me that you have been to some fascinating places, but I’ve never really had the opportunity to hear about your experiences.

    • Thank you ! Actually it’s strange that it took me so long to come up with this link given that the KKH trip is one of the most amazing things D & I have ever done – and given that Knight Moves is such a fab song ! This post was also unusual in that I supported it with images from wikipedia – rather than my own. The problem with my own is that I’m permanently behind when it comes to sorting out my travel pictures.
      Actually there aren’t that many songs that are strongly linked to travels – although there are more than none ! Second best candidate for this approach is definitely CCR Suzy Q – and a taxi ride from Rangoon (now Yangon) to the airport, in Burma (now Myanmar).
      I do have a basic list of travels here (https://peterhisblog.wordpress.com/trips/) – currently work in progress.
      P

    • Thanks for the interest. I remember it as a ‘land of wide open spaces’. Would be fascinating to revisit this fabulous area – and retrace footsteps via Turpan & Kashgar to northern Pakistan, which was equally wonderful: Hunza, Gilgit, Skardu, Chitral…

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