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Extremely Heavy Snowfall Over the Hills, Manali Breaks Earlier Record.

March 4, 2024 4:06 PM |

The most intense western disturbance of this season struck evenly and broadly across the mountains of North India, between the 01st and 03rd of March. Heavy snowfall blocked highways and arterial roads in Jammu & Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh.  The Himalayan region and neighbouring Pakistan were battered with hazardous weather conditions. Landslides and mudslides resulted collapse of a few houses, leading to casualties. In the state of Himachal Pradesh, an avalanche hit a village in Lahaul and Spiti, early on Sunday, obstructing the flow of Chenab and triggering an alert in the adjoining areas. Over half a dozen avalanches in other areas and landslides led to the closure of over 500 roads, including five national highways.

Out of the popular resorts, the most severely hit was Manali, the jumping-off point for paragliding, rafting and mountaineering in the Pir-Panjal range. Gateway to Rohtang Pass, the tourist attraction has an altitude of over 6,800 feet. The most favoured location of Himachal Pradesh was battered for three days in succession to create record snowfall for the season.

A gateway for skiing and trekking, Manali recorded 238mm of rainfall in the first three days of March 2024. The respective amounts were 60mm, 88mm and 90 mm respectively on the 01st, 02nd and 03rd March. Manali rains heaviest in the month of March, during the winter season, with an average of 202.3mm. The target was achieved in the first 3 days. Some more weather leading to spurts of snow, during the upcoming days of the month looks promising.

Manali recorded the highest snowfall/ rainfall of 90 mm in 24 hours on 03rd March 2005. Prior to this, the highest of 70.4mm was recorded on 18 Mar 2016. An all-time high of 112.4 had earlier been recorded on 22 March 1990. The tourist resort had earlier recorded a hat trick of heavy snowfall in March 2014, 2015 and 2016. The heaviest of 319.6mm was witnessed in March 2014, followed by 245.1mm & 271.8mm in 2015 and 2016, respectively. With more than three weeks to go in the month of March, the popular resort stands a chance to surpass the earlier records of the month. An all-time high of 448.4mm in March 1988, still remains an uphill task.

Image Credit: hindustantimes

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