‘Young skiers enthusiastic, need special training to manoeuvre in times of avalanches, guides must be allowed to accompany foreign guests everywhere, Gulmarg needs more hotels, tourist assistance’


Gulmarg, Feb 22 :

Touched by the mesmerising beauty of world-famous ski resort Gulmarg in northern district of Baramulla, foreign tourists from New Zealand Thursday stated that the snow clad slopes in the winter wonderland are better than Switzerland, America and even Canada.

They, however, advocated that the skiers from Kashmir and the rest of the country need international lessons including those to be followed in times of avalanches so that lives are saved and slope tracks are protected.

In an exclusive conversation with the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), Angus Wilson, a veteran skier from New Zealand said that Gulmarg slopes are breath-taking and can attract people all around the world. “I have 50 years of experience in skiing. I have done skiing in America, Japan and New Zealand but the feeling here is different and quite mesmerising,” he said.

Aware of the avalanche that hit Khilanmarg area of Gulmarg in which one Russian tourist died, Wilson said that Kashmiri and the skiers from the rest of India need internationally recognised skiing lessons so that they can manoeuvre in times of avalanches. “Apart from that, skiers coming to this place need proper training about protection of slopes and not to create havoc on slope tracks,” he said.

Wilson said that Gulmarg being a major tourist attraction needs more quality hotels and tourist assistance should be enhanced as well. “Guides should be allowed to accompany tourists right upto phase two,” he said.

Another skier from New Zealand, Lalit Jee, told KNO that Gulmarg is a fascinating place and has a great skiing potential. “I have been coming to Kashmir for many years. We want to help the government here to take skiing to new heights. Synergy among various departments should be the top priority,” he said. “Hospitality and honesty is exemplary. I left my skiing gear all around and nobody touched it.”

For Robert Vichich, another skier from New Zealand, Gulmarg is no less than a heaven on the earth. “Kashmir is very unique and Gulmarg is the crown indeed. It’s a white heaven. Altitude and elevation of the slopes is amazing. We are loving it. I have done skiing in Canada but no comparison with Gulmarg. A lot more can be done to improve skiing here. Training, rather quality training of international standards should be introduced to save lives in times of avalanches and other things that are life-threatening,” he said.

A group of foreign tourists advocated that skiing tracks need to be protected by all means. “There should be no haphazard skiing. Tracks need to be identified for beginners, trained and well-trained skiers. Every skier must ensure that tracks aren’t damaged during skiing. Skiing indeed is a great art,” they said. Gulmarg received abundant snow in the fresh spell of snowfall in Kashmir from February 18 to 20. The winter wonderland was enveloped with the snow making it fit for the skiing and the Khelo India 2024 event in which 600 athletes are participating—(KNO)


Shaharbeen News Service Kashmir is a news service which covers, gathers, writes, and distributes news to newspapers, periodicals, radio and television broadcasters, government agencies, and other users. We at SNS Kashmir believe in fair and independent journalism to inform our masses or subscribers and readers about the happenings around the world. The prime focus of the news gathering and reporting is focused on Jammu and Kashmir state.

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