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Manali – Shimla – Dalhousie | First Snowfall of 2012 – 13

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On the onset of Christmas and New Year eves, get ready to celebrate the holidays with snow white magic in hills of Himachal Pradesh :)… Most of the major towns of Himachal Pradesh including Manali, Solang Valley, Shimla including upper Shimla (Narkanda, Kufri, Hatu) and Dalhousie – Khajjiar, upper Dharamshala etc. received good amount of snowfall yesterday with lower hills getting 5-15  cms of snow while upper hills getting almost upto a feet of snow, yesterday. The tribal areas of Himachal Pradesh including Spiti Valley and Lahaul Valley almost got snow ranging from 2 feet to 3 feet. This has resulted in extremely chilled conditions and winds all over the Northern belts with some parts of high hill in Himachal recording more freezing temperatures of minus 8 to minus 13 degree Celsius.It has been predicted by the MeT department that the snow will continue to show its magic over next few days as well. So, get ready for some snow filled vacations in coming weeks 😉 …

Read More Below:

Shimla, 12 December 2012: Hills near the popular tourist destinations of Shimla, Manali and Dalhousie on Tuesday saw moderate snowfall – the season’s first spell, while other higher reaches of the state received heavy snowfall, creating biting cold wave conditions in the region. Manali and Dalhousie received first moderate snowfall of the season with main towns receiving five to 15 cm of snow while Solang Nallah and Rohtang pass (130,50 ft) recorded 45 cm and 80 cm of fresh snow, creating piercing cold wave conditions in adjoining valleys, Met office sources said.

The tribal areas which recorded 70 cm to 100 cm of snow groaned under arctic conditions with minimum temperature staying between minus 8 and minus 13 degree Celsius and Rohtang pass, Kunzam pass and other high mountain passes were closed for vehicular traffic.

The state capital Shimla was experiencing intermittent snow fall since this morning, accompanied by strong velocity icy winds and sleet, causing sharp fall in minimum and maximum temperatures which dipped to 3.6 degree and 8.6 degree C respectively.
Jakoo, the highest peak in Shimla and adjoining tourist resorts of Kufri, Fagu and Narkanda recorded 10 cm to 30 cm of snow.

The mid and lower hills were lashed by intermittent rains accompanied by strong velocity winds and day temperatures plummeted throughout the state.
The maximum temperatures dropped by eight to twelve degrees to settle at 9.9 degree at Sundernagar, 10.8 degree at Bhunter,18.2 degree at Dharamsala, 18.8 degree at Una, 14.9 degree at Nahan ,14.5 degree at Solan and 2.0 degree at Kalpa.

An induced upper air cyclonic circulation lies over south west Rajasthan in lower levels extending up to 1.5 km a.S.L. resulting in rains or snow across the region during next three days, Manmohan Singh, Director local MeT office said.

External Source: Shimla, Manali get season’s first snowfall

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  1. Rahul Das on

    HI Dheeraj Ji,I had wonder full moment in Leh.Your suggestion was very helpful at there.Thank u very much.Now I am planning to go to Auli & Dalhouise at january between 1-10 january.Can I see enough snow?should I stay in joshimath for auli trip ? should I have to book hotel in advance both for Auli & dalhouise trip or it can easily gettable?

    • Hi Rahul,

      That is wonderful to know. Well both Auli and Dalhousie are in extreme opposite directions, one is at one end of Himachal and the other is on opposite end of Uttarakhand. Are you sure you want to make a trip like that?

      Dheeraj Sharma

      • Rahul Das on

        Dheeraj Ji, I khnow that both r in xtreme direction.But as A snow lover ,I decided to plan fr the tour back to back.Kindly suggest me.When I can get enough snow n dalhuoise? Should I have to book hotel in advance for both the Auli & dalhouise trip or It can easily gettable?


        • Hi Rahul,

          I do not feel you should book hotel in advance at that time of the year. May be for Auli as there are only 2 Options AFAIK. So, book them. Khajjair shall be good enough. Dalhousie – Khajjiar you might expect snow in Jan and Feb and Auli is same too. So far it has not snowed yet anywhere but expected very soon, any day.


  2. Hi Dheeraj.


    My parents would require a taxi (Innova / Tavera) for the following routes:

    1) Chandigarh – Manali
    2) Manali – Shimla

    Can you please recommend a good taxi / tour operator who charges nominal rates?

    Thank you!

  3. hi dheeraj,
    am planing to go to shimla manali by car. we are a 6 member group. what will be the taxi rate for dropping from shimla to manali.

  4. Hi Dheeraj, i m planning to travel to HP in dec 2013… so far ve planned chandigarh , shimla, manali, chamba, khajjar and amritsar… after reading ur article abt tirthan valley i thnk i shld make some changes… wld recommend tirthan in dec? any other places if you could suggest… rgds rinku

    • Rinku, Tirthan is fine but keep in mind that it will not be that green and brownish in colors. So, experience wise it will not be that great but that is how most of the places are in Winters. However, at other places, there are some good views too which are better than Tirthan. Tirthan is more to spend quality time wen greenery is around. How many days you have in hand?

  5. hi dheeraj… how ru….i am planning for a short vacation for 2-3 days to any1 place in hp in early july.
    can you please suggest which place to visit in july be it shimla manali mcleodganj dalhousie.etc(u know it better 🙂 )

  6. Hi Dheeraj,

    Hope you doing good !!
    Sonal again with few queries related to Dalhousie this time. Last year I had a wonderful trip to Leh with your help.

    We are planning to visit Dalhousie, Khajjiar and McLeodGanj in the month of August – 1st week.

    1. Will it be a good idea to visit in August?
    2. Have googled for panchpulla
    raavi dam, satdhara, kalatop etc. Are they worth visiting? Can u suggest more places nearby?

    Kindly reply to above queries

    • Hello Sonal,

      1. Hmmm, though it rains alot in monsoon time so you need to take a calculative risk for sure.
      2. Yes, you can try and visit these places. Kalatop is worth a visit. Chamera Lake is one more and Chamba too. Also try to visit Jot, a good vantage point.

      I hope this helps. Please let me know in case you have any queries or doubts.

      Dheeraj Sharma

      PS: Sorry for the delayed response, I was traveling to Spiti Valley for past 10 days.

  7. Hi Dheeraj,
    I am planning a trip to Manali in last week of April (27th to 30th April. 2013).
    Have some queries:
    1) Will Rohtang pass be open at that time? At what time generally it opens for public?
    2) How would be Manali’s weather at that time? Is it advisable to go their at this time?
    3) Are their any GOOD Sleeper Volvo buses ply between Delhi and Manali? If yes, please let me know the name or link to book the tickets?

    Thanks a lot for helping amateur travelers like me..

    • Hello Rohit,

      1. Rohtang Pass might not be open by that time. Generally, it opens by mid May to late May for past few of years or so.
      2. It will be pleasant enough. Carry light woolens though.
      3. Yes, HPTDC as well as HRTC run their Volvo buses and you can book them online using their official websites or Chandralok buidling in CP, Delhi.

      Dheeraj Sharma

  8. Dheeraj,
    Is it possible to visit Simla – Nakarda – Sarahan – Rampur – Chitkul – Manali circuits during mid Feb 2013? Will it be fully snow-covered? I want to see greenery as well as some snow.. But I definitely donot want a B&W photos of the place 😉 Based on your suggestion, i would change my plan. I have close to 10 -11 days with me. I can come to Delhi by flight from Chennai…

    • I was also looking if Kalpa – Sangla Valley – Chander Tal Lake is also possible during mid Feb…

    • Hi Lakhsmi,

      Chitkul will be closed but rest can be visited in mid-Feb. You will find snow at Narkanda and at snow points of Manali. Also, towards Chitkul from Sangla valley. Well, you will get a bit greener side at Sangla and towards Shimla, Rampur and may be Sarahan too. 10-11 days would be ideal for it.

      Dheeraj Sharma

      • Thanks Dheeraj… For your replies.. I will come up with a plan and then ask a few more questions. I think there is no need to pre-book taxis or hotels since it is an off-season. But any drivers you can suggest?

        • Yes, Lakshmi there isn’t much need for booking them prior and can decide or select them there only to gain good bargains as well 🙂 … You are most welcome for any queries.


  9. Hi, Dheeraj, Howz you, Please tell me is their any problem to plan By Car Delhi – Shimla – Narkanda on Coming 20 Dec2012, Or is their any problem due to Snowfall, what about the road Condition after Snowfall, M already visit Both Places but no Experience of road condition after Snowfall, so please suggest me……?

    • Pankaj, road conditions does become slippery when snowfall happens and generally the traffic stops in case of any danger. So, you can drive down there but will advice drive with some caution and care in case you find snow on roads. Generally you will find that only if snowfall has happened in those days.

      Dheeraj sharma

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