Shimla: Thousands of tourists who gathered here to ring in the New Year were in for disappointment as their dream to witness “White New Year” remained unfulfilled.
The region had a dry but windy day today and sky remained clear, dampening the hopes of snowfall as predicted earlier and tourists may have to wait for a day or two to experience snowfall.
The MeT office has predicted rain and snow at many places in middle and higher hills on January 2 and 3, coupled with significant fall in day temperature, further intensifying the cold wave conditions.
There is no likelihood of respite from biting cold wave conditions as the MeT office has predicted further fall in day temperature on January 2 and 3 and minimum temperature on January 4 and 5. Rain or thundershowers in lower hills and rains and snow in middle and higher hills is likely from January 1 to January 5 and weather will remain dry on January 5, the MeT office said.
The high altitude tribal area froze with night temperatures staying between minus 16 and minus 22, while Keylong and Kalpa in tribal Lahaul and Spiti and Kinnaur districts recorded a low of minus 8.2 degree and minus 3 degree.
Kufri, Manali and Solan shivered at minus 1.8 degree, minus 1.4 degree and minus 0.6 degree, respectively, followed by Sundernagar 0.7 degree, Bhuntar 1 degree, Shimla 1.2 degree, Palampur and Una 2 degree and Dharamsala 2.4 degree.
The MeT office advisory said: “Moderate snowfall is very likely to occur at scattered places in the districts of Kullu, Chamba, Lahaul and Spiti, Shimla, Kangra and Kinnaur on January 2 and 3, disrupting traffic at some places in Chamba, Kullu, Lahaul and Spiti, Shimla and Kinnaur districts .Another western disturbance would affect the state from January 6 to 8, while the minimum temperatures would drop further on January 4 and 5.”
The hotels and other high-end properties are packed to capacity in Shimla and adjoining resorts and hoteliers are upbeat as snowfall on January 2 and 3 would extend the peak season by few days as tourists even rush to Kufri and Narkanda to enjoy the snow.