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Skiing in Himalaya
Despite having the great peaks of the Himalaya located within its borders, India is not highly developed as a skiing desti≠nation. There are currently only three downhill resorts in the country, and these are of varying quality. For many years, Gulmarg in Kashmir was the best place in India to ski, but its been a bit of a ghost resort for the past six years since the bor≠der dispute with Pakistan blew up again. Your best bets are either Solang, in the Kulu Valley, or Auli in Garwhal. At Solang there is a short Poma lift, but it is frequently inoperative and its use is usually restricted to participants on government-run skiing courses. Auli seems to have the potential to develop as a popular ski resort, and the local government have recently invested in a cable car and chair lift (although, unfortunately, they arenít linked). Downhill ski≠ing in India usually starts in mid-Decem≠ber and goes on until about mid-March.
A more adventurous alternative to down hill skiing is ski touring, for which the rug≠ged Indian Himalaya is ideal. Itís a great way to meet the tribal peoples of the moun≠tainous regions of India and to experience wild terrain, high mountain pass crossings, mega sunrises (and numbingly cold morn≠ings). Many of these areas are so remote itís unlikely youíll come across any tracks other than your own.
The best time for ski touring is in March/April when the weather is more set≠tled. A good place for a first visit is the Kulu Valley; itís excellent as a base for short for≠ays into the mountains or as a starting point for longer expeditions over to Lahaul and Zanskar. Manali is the main town, 15hrs by bus from Delhi. Alternatively, you can fly from Delhi to Bhuntar (two hours by road from Manali).