Bird eye view of Kaza in Spiti. Photo used for indicative propose only

Fresh snowfall delights Himachal Pradesh’s high peaks
Shimla, Sept 30

In the past 24 hours, the high peaks of Lahaul Spiti district in Himachal Pradesh have been draped in a pristine layer of two to three inches of freshly fallen snow. The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) attributes this unexpected snowfall to a feeble monsoon and a western disturbance affecting the region.

Reports indicate that fresh snowfall has graced the high peaks of Himachal Pradesh overnight, although most roads and highways remain open. Notably, the Baralacha Top on the Manali-Leh road boasts a striking white sheet of snow, measuring over two to three inches in thickness. Additionally, the Sarchu pass ahead of Baralacha have also witnessed fresh snowfall, making the highway slippery. Fortunately, traffic between Sarchu and Leh, though disrupted for a few hours, has now been restored. However, the local administration warns that if the snowfall persists for a few more days, further disruptions may occur.

The mercury is plummeting to subzero temperatures in the high mountain peaks, with district headquarters experiencing near-freezing conditions. This intensification of cold is a clear sign that winter is making an early arrival in the high-altitude areas of the state.

Surprisingly, the snowfall during the monsoon season has brought joy to tourists who had flocked to Baralacha and other snow-covered areas of the state.

According to the Met forecast, Lahaul Spiti’s weather is expected to remain clear today, including the popular tourist resort of Manali. While Shimla experienced partly cloudy to mainly clear conditions, the early morning hours were notably chilly. IMD predicts that the monsoon may withdraw by October 3, a departure delayed compared to the usual withdrawal date of September 18 to 20 for this region.

The state of Himachal Pradesh has witnessed a delayed departure and an extended spell of monsoon rain this year, with the last 35 days being particularly deficient in rainfall. The official announcement of the monsoon’s withdrawal is expected from the IMD, but it is anticipated to occur within the next one or two days. As a result, the weather is forecasted to remain dry across the state until October 3, potentially leading to a slight rise in temperature.

September rain data

In terms of rainfall statistics for September, it’s been an abnormally dry month for most districts, with Kangra being the exception, experiencing 4 percent more rainfall than normal. Lahaul Spiti district saw a staggering 82 percent less rainfall than normal, while Solan, Shimla, Kinnaur, Mandi, Bilaspur, Chamba, Hamirpur, Kullu, Sirmaur, and Una districts all received less rainfall than usual. However, it’s important to note that during the entire monsoon season, the region received 21 percent more rainfall than the normal average, with significant rainfalls occurring in July and August.

This increase in rainfall, especially during certain periods, has contributed to various challenges and difficulties faced by the region.


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