Alpine Skiing
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Alpine Skiing - Kashmir Gulmarg Skiing
Skiing in Kashmir is a thrilling and exciting experience for any adventure enthusiast. And what better a place can be then the remote and exciting meadows of Gulmarg. Just 50 km from Srinagar, and situated at an altitude of 2,730 m, Gulmarg changes its scenery from a flowery meadow to that of a small ski resort in winters. Now considered as the ski paradise, Gulmarg is flocked by Ski-lovers from all over the world. This exotic ski resort provides with magnificent views of the Karakorams and the Greater Himalayan ranges. Gulmarg provides an altitude difference of over 1,500 m with lengths of more than 10 km. However, only a ski-mountaineer can reach these higher slopes. There are cross-country runs apart from downhill skiing and there are delightful excursions to the shrine of Baba Reshi through the 'powder chute'.

Duration
: 10 Days
Highlights
: Lots and lots of skiing, majestic alpine ski trails and holidays in houseboats.
Focus
: Skiing in Gulmarg, Boat rides in Dal-Lake and Mughal garden explorations.
Best time
: December to Early March.
Grade
: Easy as the tour is in a relatively low altitude region.

Day 01: Arrive in Delhi:
On your arrival at the airport, you will be met by the representative, who will assist and transfer you to the hotel. Overnight in hotel.

Day 02: Sightseeing in Delhi:
Morning will be at leisure. After breakfast, we begin a sightseeing tour to Old Delhi. Our first stop will be at Raj-Ghat: The memorial site where Mahatma Gandhi (Father of the Indian Nation) was cremated. We then visit the Jama Masjid: The largest mosque of India and the opulent Red Fort: Famously associated with the Former Mughal Empire. We enjoy a cycle rickshaw ride from Jama Masjid to Chandni Chowk. Later in the afternoon, we will have lunch at one of the local restaurants and proceed towards a vehicular and extensive sightseeing tour across Lutyen’s New Delhi visiting India Gate, The President’s House, Parliament House. We also pay a visit in the late evening to Humayun’s Tomb, which is sometimes said to be the forerunner of the Taj Mahal at Agra. Overnight in hotel.

Day 03: Delhi to Srinagar: (By air – 1½ hrs):
On your arrival, you will be met at the airport, and escorted to your houseboat in the central part of the city. The day will be spent in exploring the lake visiting the local floating markets and the backwaters. Dinner and overnight in houseboats.

Day 04: In Srinagar:
We spend the day in sightseeing of the Mughal gardens and the old city. Our first stopover will be at the picturesque Shalimar garden, which has pretty laid gardens and fountains running down in the central area. Later we drive to visit the Imposing 16th century Nishat garden. Laid out beautifully in terraces and flowing fountains, the garden was built by Emperor Jehangir (Mughal Empire). After light lunch in one of the coffee shops in the capital area, we drive to visit the old part of the city, visiting the 14th century Jama Masjid (wooden spires and courtyard) and the local spice and dry fruit market. We drive back to our houseboats in the late afternoon. Rest of the evening at leisure, by the side of a warm heater and sipping the local tea. Overnight in houseboats.

Day 05: Srinagar to Gulmarg:
After breakfast in the morning, we drive towards the pretty mountain resort of Gulmarg. Driving past villages and Pine & Fir lined forests, we arrive at the white and dazzling ski resort in the early afternoon. After we settle in the warm centrally heated hotel, we will begin a small reconnaissance tour of the distant hills. Rest of the day at leisure. Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 06: In Gulmarg:
We begin our skiing today. The trail that we have in mind is the most scenic and supernatural that exists in the forest glades, which fall from the resort plateau to the valley below. This area provides an uncountable number of enchanting and exciting descents for riders of all standards. We start from the top of Gulmarg and onto some steeper first hundred meters or so of the Village Trail. We then descend through open forests and cover significant depths of new snow that are untouched by grooming machines. The route is approximately three kilometers in length, providing relaxing cruise terrain for accomplished riders and a solid introduction to powder snow for intermediates. Rest of the day at leisure. Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 07: In Gulmarg:
Our second day of adventure starts with a chairlift from the base to the to of the Aparwat Mountain (4124m). The Poma designed gondola features a six-seater cabin that lift snow riders 1330 vertical metres to the top station at 3980 metres above sea level. From the top station an optional 30 minute walk will take you to Mt Apharwat's 4124 metre peak. We glide on for over a couple of kilometres along Apharwat's Southeast shoulders, before descending the mountain's multiple ridges, faces and bowls. From the top we will have magnificent and consistent advanced slopes to distant parts of the Gulmarg meadow. The Southeast shoulder from the gondola exit door, before descending past Gulmarg to the valley floor near Drang, provides a total ride of over 1700 vertical metres of serious off-piste terrain. We then take the slopes served by Stage One of the gondola, below the mid station restaurant at 3050 metres, which are far more gentle. With plenty of gigantic pines and firs to help visibility, the area provides well-protected riding in all weather conditions. There is a "return track from skier's left", which will provide an easy finish for skiers to numerous unmarked descents through scattered trees including plenty of "powder stashes". One of our favourite home tracks is the old chairlift line which runs parallel to the gondola - "Mughuls" is the closest Gulmarg has to a bump run. Empty chairs hang overhead, defunct and motionless, like ghostly spectators of your powder snow finesse - a surreal reminder of skiers from bygone days and their earlier adventures in Gulmarg!. After an exhilarating day, we go back to the hotel for rest and relaxation. Overnight in hotel.

Day 08: In Gulmarg:
We stay in the resort for one more day and explore the small ski areas before driving back to Srinagar next morning. The short Poma surface lifts are located on back-to-back slopes overlooking the snow blanketed golf course. The Pomas provide an excellent variety of wide-open beginner and intermediate practice terrain. The area is the venue for Gulmarg's ski school and race clinics. The Poma slopes are a few hundred meters walk from the gondola, and can be a handy way of visiting the Golf Club, which is located further along the golf course. The Poma slopes are groomed on a regular basis by Gulmarg's modern Kassbohrer machines. Rest of the day at leisure, dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 09: Gulmarg to Srinagar:
We take a late morning breakfast, followed by a visit to the local attractions (including Muslim, Christian, Sikh and Hindu places of worship plus the Golf Club). In the afternoon, we drive back to Srinagar and en-route visit the local museum displaying various artifacts of Kashmir. We later transfer to the houseboats for our overnight stay. Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 10: Srinagar to Delhi & Fly home: (By air – 1½ hrs):
We will transfer to the mainland in the morning and board our jeeps for the airport. On arrival at the domestic airport, in Delhi we will proceed for a half-day sightseeing in the national capital. We will visit the Bahai Temple (Lotus temple of the Bahai faith) and Qutab Minar (Victory tower of the first Muslim Slave Dynasty) . Later in the evening, we will drive to a hotel for dinner and get transferred to the international airport for your flight back home.

Adventure Indian Himalays