In pics: Shimla turns white as hill town gets season’s first snowfall | india-news | Hindustan Times
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In pics: Shimla turns white as hill town gets season’s first snowfall

It was a white Christmas in Shimla this year, as the popular tourist destination received snowfall on December 25 after more than two decades. Around 9am, snowfall started in the hill retreat as well as in Kufri and Narkanda, leaving tourists elated. The morning was wet, with light drizzles since 6am. In last 24 hours, the night temperature in Shimla has plunged by 4 degrees Celsius. There was no forecast of snowfall though.

india Updated: Dec 26, 2016 00:28 IST
Saurabh Chauhan
A woman enjoys this year’s first snowfall in Shimla on Sunday.
A woman enjoys this year’s first snowfall in Shimla on Sunday.(Deepak Sansta /HT Photo)

It was a white Christmas in Shimla this year, as the popular hill retreat received snowfall on December 25 after more than two decades.

Around 9am on Sunday, snowfall started in the popular tourist destination as well as in Kufri and Narkanda, leaving tourists elated.

A white layer of snow covers Shimla. (Deepak Sansta/HT Photo)

The morning was wet, with light drizzles since 6am bringing the mercury down. In the last 24 hours, the night temperature in Shimla plunged by 4 degrees Celsius. There was no forecast of snowfall though, but it changed with the onset of a western disturbance.

In the morning hours, as tourists found it difficult to drive through the frozen roads . Traffic was restored in the afternoon .

“I have come here twice before on Christmas, but never saw snowfall. It’s my first experience,” said Nidhi, a tourist from Ludhiana.

Tourists dance in the snow. (Deepak Sansta/HT Photo)

Alka Sharma, a Sonepat resident, said she had planned to return on Sunday but was extending her stay. “I have come to Shimla many times, but had not seen snowfall.”

Shimla meteorological centre director Manmohan Singh said light snowfall and showers are expected at high-altitude areas. The weather will be dry from Monday, he said.

People take out umbrellas as snow covers Shimla. (Deepak Sansta/HT Photo)

Another official said: “The records at the metrological office suggest that it’s the first time in 24 years that it has snowed on Christmas day . There was light snowfall on December 24 last year.”

What about a white New Year? “In the last 30 years, snowfall on New Year was witnessed in Shimla in 1990, 1995, 2000, 2002 and 2010,” he said.

People amid snowfall in Shimla. (Deepak Sansta/HT Photo)
Tourists take selfies. (Deepak Sansta/HT Photo)
The tourist destination, also known as Hill Queen, turns white. (Deepak Sansta/HT Photo)
People converge on a rain-drenched road. (Deepak Sansta/HT Photo)

Snowflakes lash a wooden house. Pic: @Saurabhjr(Twitter)

Snowflakes lash a wooden house. Pic: @Saurabhjr(Twitter)

The snowfall has buoyed farmers and people in the tourism business after a spell of what many termed a warm winter.

“Today morning, I have received around a dozen of enquiries. I have two vehicles and both have been booked to Kufri,” Amit Sharma, a taxi operator said.