Snow Festival at Gulmarg from December 24 to 26, 2009
Kashmir winter games calendar released
Srinagar, December 09 - Minister for Tourism and Culture, Jammu & Kashmir, Mr. Nawang Rigzin Jora has hoped that the winter resort of Gulmarg will be a hub of activities during the coming winter season also. This was stated by the Minister after inaugurating the Trekking Hire Equipment shop in the premises of Department of Tourism here today. He said after commissioning of the 2nd phase of the Gulmarg Gandola Lift accessibility of Affarvat range for skiing, many foreigner skiers have visited Gulmarg during the last few years. This year is no exception and from the feedback received from various private hoteliers is hoped that valley will receive a record number of foreigners this year too.
To ensure safety of the skiers who access the higher reaches of the mountains, the Minister said the Tourism department has already engaged accredited foreign experts who will head the ski patrol team and work in tandem with the local officials of the team drawn from the Tourism Department and Cable Car Corporation. The team, he said, will start its operation from December 15, 2009 till the end of the Ski season. He said that heli-skiing will also be revived and negotiations with concerned companies in this behalf are in progress.
Various competitions are also slated to be held including National Junior Alpine Ski Championship and State Ski Championship. The department will organize the Snow Festival at Gulmarg from December 24 to 26, 2009 during which many events are slated which include Night Skiing, Cultural Programmes, FAM Tours and National Ice Championship. This event will kick start the winter season at Gulmarg which will culminate with the holding of National Cross Country Ski Championship from March 11 to 13, 2010, he added.
The department is also endeavoring to exploit the ski potential of other areas and in this regard snow carnivals shall be held at Doodpathri and Aru (Pahalgam). Besides, ice skating championship is being held at Leh as a part of this year’s winter games calendar and all the facilities at Gulmarg like snow beating machines, snow scooters, ski hire equipment have been kept in full readiness and the department is confident about the successful conduct of various activities at Gulmarg.
The Minister further said that 30 skiing coaching camps would also be organized by various departments like Youth Services and Sports, IISM, University of Kashmir, Bisco School etc from January 1, 2010 upto last week of February 2010.