Skiing in Himachal Pradesh
Despite being an old sport, skiing got its due recognition in
Himachal only in the year 1930. It was the British officials who at
that point of time recognised the potential of Himachal as a skiing
destination. Skiing, actually can be divided into two sections -
Alpine and Nordic. The first one involves racing down on a steep
prepared slopes. The races themselves are of three types - downhill,
giant slalom and slalom (skiing in a zig zag courses). Nordic skiing
consist of cross country and ski jumping from an elevated position.
The location of Himachal, amidst the snowclad Himalayan ranges of
Shivalik, Dhauladar, Pir Pinjal and the Great Himalayas makes both
these type of skiing is possible.
Skiing is an exciting adventure sports for if you love speed and have control over your balance. The entire experience of speeding through snow is simply indescribable. The fun and adventure is best experienced than written.
Skiing Places in Himachal Pradesh
Kufri is perhaps the best places to enjoy skiing in Himachal
Pradesh. It also happens to be the same slope that was explored by the
British officials in the 1930. Kufri lies around 12 km north of Shimla
and is also the venue for an annual winter sports festival in the
month of February. This festival aims at promoting adventure sports in
A little above Kufri, Mahasu ridge too offers exciting slopes for skiing enthusiasts. Narkanda, around 64 km from Shimla, is yet another destination for enjoying skiing. Here, you have a range of slopes - from beginner's run, an advanced slope and a slalom run.
Other skiing areas in Himachal Pradesh include the Solang Nallah, Patalsu, Kothi, Marhi and Rohtang slopes. All these are the nearby areas of Manali and are considered extremely good for skiing. The Rohatnag Pass and Patalsu are the only slopes in the country where you can enjoy skiing in summer season. Solang Nallah also plays host to the National level ski competition.
Heli skiing is much more exciting than skiing and accordingly more
demanding. In it, you are carried on a helicopter to a snow capped
peak and dropped there. Thereafter, you run down at a great speed. At
the height where you are dropped, the only visible sight from there
are the snow and sky. This is what primarily differentiates heli
skiing from skiing. While skiing can be done at moderately high
mountains, heli skiing requires you to be dropped at the peak itself.
The difficulty is further increased by the fact that at such a great
height, snow is not as thick as it is below. It is in powdered form
and vary soft.
As you rush down the slopes, cold chilly winds hit your face and fill you with a sense of excitement and elation at the same time.
Heli Skiing Places
Heli skiing in Himachal Pradesh can be enjoyed at Hanuman Tibba, Rohtang Pass, Deo Tibba and Chanderkhani Pass.
You should remember that skiing is not just about wearing warm
clothes and running down snowy slopes. The first step to enjoy skiing
and specially heli skiing in Himachal Pradesh is to recognise the fact
that there are potential dangers involved. You must at first check out
the weather conditions because at such a great height, chances of
avalanches are not ruled out. Also, in case of heli skiing, find out
the height from where actual skiing will begin.
Equipments are of paramount importance and you need to make sure that all that required for a safe expedition is available. Equipments like ski jackets, ski goggles, ski helmets, ski socks and skies are available from HTPDC office. Make sure that your jacket has following features - waterproofing, breathable fabrics, taped seams, venting zippers and insulating stretch components for comfort. Goggles are important to protect your eyes from the sharp UV rays emitted by snow during bright days.
Moreover, it is always better to take the help of a certified ski guide and trained pilots. These people are always around to help you out and turn the trip into an enjoyable one. Try to collect enough necessary information pertaining to the sports so that you are fully prepared to face situation.
Short courses are conducted by HPTDC for beginners.