Srinagar: Snowfall has begun in Upper reaches of Kashmir Valley while rains lashed many areas in the plains on Thursday with the onset of 40 day long Chilleh Kalan (Longer and harshest period of cold).
Almost 4 inches of snowfall were reported from parts of north Kashmir and authorities closed Bandipora-Gurez road. However, vehicles were plying on the Srinagar-Jammu highway, the main surface link connecting Kashmir Valley with the rest of India.
Reports said 12 cm of snow has accumulated at Sadhna top, 10 cm on Furkain Gali and 10 cm on Z Gali.
Reports reaching Srinagar said that snow has accumulated at Tangmarg, Gulmarg and Babareshi since 4 a.m. today. Official at Tangmarg said, only vehicles having 4×4 facility or vehicles fixed with snow chains on tyres, shall be allowed to move between Tangmarg and Gulmarg.
Meanwhile, the Met Office in Srinagar predicted more snowfall in parts of Kashmir region, including outer Himalayas parts, north and South Kashmir mountains and upper Kishtwar-Bhaderwah belt in coming days.
"Snowfall is likely again in upper parts of Kashmir valley and upper Chenab valley areas mainly Upper Kishtwar, Upper Bhaderwah, Wadwan and surrounding areas of Kolohoi Glacier and upper Pahalgam on Friday 24th December", an official said.
On Sunday snowfall is likely to start across parts of South Kashmir including Anantnag, Kulgam and Shopian districts, particularly Verinag, Pahalgam, Kulgam, Damhal Hanjipora, Kapran, Shopian, Pir ki Gali, Bafliaz areas from Sunday – Wednesday (26 – 29 December)
Snowfall is then likely to cover most of Kashmir valley, Chenab, upper Pirpanchal areas and other winter zone areas of Jammu division. Kargil, Drass, Zanaskar and parts of Ladakh are also likely to experience moderate to heavy snowfall.
North Kashmir areas of Baramulla, Rafiabad, Sopore, Bandipora, Lolab Valley, Razdan Pass, Gurez, Kupwara, Sadhna Pass are likely to receive rainfall and snowfall ranging between 1.5 feet to 3 feet.
Central Kashmir valley plains, including Srinagar city, Zabarwan range, Dara-Harwan, Dachigam Park and Mahadev mountain areas, Tral-Shikargah areas, Ganderbal, Kangan, Sindh valley and Sonamarg are likely to receive 1 foot to 3 feet of snowfall.
Pirpanjal mountain range and karewa areas in Budgam, Pulwama, Baramulla districts along the range from Yusmarg, Gulmarg and Kandi Baramulla would receive 1 foot to 4 feet of snowfall.
Banihal, Patnitop, upper parts of Ramban, upper Rajouri and Poonch would receive snowfall ranging between 1.5 feet to 2 feet.
Meanwhile, a meteorological department said that Srinagar recorded a low of 2.6 against last night’s minus 1.8°C. It was after several days that the mercury rose above normal sub-zero level and today’s temperature was 4.6°C above normal for this time of the year.
The mercury in the ski resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district settled at minus 3.7°C against minus 4.0°C on the previous night, the official said. It was 2.1°C above normal for the famous resort which is presently teeming with visitors.
Qazigund had a low of 0.8°C against minus 3.°C on the previous night, he said.
Pahalgam recorded a low of 0.3°C against minus 5.2°C on previous night.
Kokernag, also in south Kashmir, recorded a low of 0.7°C against minus 1.9°C on previous night, the official said.
Kupwara town in north Kashmir recorded a minimum of 2.6°C against minus 2.9°C on the previous night, the official said.
Jammu saw a low of 9.3°C which is 6.8°C below normal, he said.
Ladakh’s Leh had a low of minus 6.6°C against last night’s minus 12.4°C while automatic Kargil station recorded minimum of minus 6.1°C. Drass in Kargil, the second coldest place in the world after Siberia, recorded a low of minus 9.6°C, the official said.
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