Snowfall in Himachal brings down temperature

SHIMLA/MANALI: High and mid hills of Himachal seem to have entered
the chilling winter season after hills up to 12,000 feet including Rohtang pass
and Kunzum pass experiencing moderate snowfall since last 48 hours.

Fresh snowfall on Rohtang ranges near Manali
Announcing the
arrival of winters, Rohtang pass near Manali witnessed first snowfall of the
season.  The pass received 15cm fresh
snow while Kunzum pass on Manali-Spiti highway witnessed 25cm fresh snow. Hills
above 15,000 feet have received more than 30cm fresh snow while the snowfall is
still continuing on Western Himalaya regions in Himachal.

Temperature on
high hills has plunged below the freezing point while a fall of 2 to 3 degrees
Celsius was recorded in the maximum and minimum temperature of the state. Kalpa
in Kinnaur recorded the minimum temperature of 9.4 degrees Celsius. Manali,
Keylong, Shimla and Dharamshala recorded minimum temperature at 10, 11, 14.6
and 18 degrees Celsius respectively.

Snow has
descended very close to the inhabited villages in Lahaul valley. The Manali-Leh
highway remained blocked for several hours after fresh snow made traffic
movement difficult over the Rohtang pass. Surprisingly, residents in the whole
valley, who are concerned about the thousands of tonnes of seed potatoes which
are ready to take out of the valley, are resorting to fire to escape the biting
cold. Their fire places are spewing smoke a month earlier than the usual.

Ramesh Tughi, a
resident of Lapshak village, told Himachal
Vacation
over the phone that temperature is close to freezing point and
cold winds are forcing residents to stay indoors. “All the peaks around our
valley are experiencing heavy snowfall since Sunday night. We are feeling like
spending the winters of December month,” he said.

Another resident
of Kalpa in Kinnaur, Balbir Negi, said cold has swept entire region with
temperature plunging drastically in last 24 hours. “We spent a very cold night
and even the day temperature is abnormally very low. No doubt, we would get to
see snow very soon this year,” he added.
According to
Shimla meteorological department director Manmohan Singh, the southwest monsoon
remained vigorous over the state in last 24 hours and caused very heavy rain
and moderate snowfall in isolated parts of the state. “Western Disturbances
over J&K and neighbouring states are interacting with easterly winds over
western Himalayas and causing change in weather. The similar conditions would
continue for five more days,” he said.

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