The original plan for today was to cross the Brahmaputra by boat and visit degree confluence 26N90E on the way, then cycle into the hills of Meghalaya.
26N90E is located right in the river Brahmaputra. Older satellite images show that it is near or on an island, so I hired a boat to circumnavigate the island right across from Dhubri’s ghat, but it turned out to be too big (the island, that is). The confluence might well be on that island. The river destroys and creates islands every year during the monsoon season and everything looks different now from what is shown on the satellite images.
Unfortunately, in the middle of the river my phone-slash-GPS died and I was blind as far as the confluence is concerned. I returned to Dhubri.
The phone agreed to work again as soon as I was back in town. I had lunch and, later in the afternoon, started a 2nd attempt at visiting the confluence.
I returned to the ghat and asked for a boat to go to the island. I had seen before that every now and then one goes there. There was one ready to leave, but apparently it went somewhere else. I was told that the next one would be going to the island. I went on board – and it left immediately. I had assumed it would wait and take other passengers as well… Arriving at the island, I was quoted a fare of 500 Rupees, which was a ridiculous price for the 5-minute boat ride. We couldn’t agree on a price and agreed that the driver would wait while I went looking for the confluence.
Finding it was easy, a 20-minute thing, all in all. There was a 4WD track from the ghat leading southeast, directly towards the confluence.
This char (river island), unlike the ones I saw in Bangladesh, is not used for agriculture. It consists of sand and there is very little vegetation.
After the return to Dhubri the driver finally agreed to 100 Rupees.