Darjeeling in West Bengal, popularly known as the ‘Queen of Hills’ is reported to have snowfall, yesterday. Darjeeling city per se, has not received flakes of snow but surely was lashed with decent winter showers. The higher reaches of Darjeeling district’s Sandakphu, Phalut and Tiger Hills and surrounding areas experienced first snowfall of the season. Darjeeling town, as such, remain in queue for the ‘black magic’ event of witnessing white sheet, spread across the undulating black tea plantations and slopes of mountains.
Once a summer resort for the British Raj elite, Darjeeling is not frequented with snowfall and skips the event many a time during winters. Last time, the terminus of ‘Toy Train’ witnessed a freak occurrence of snowfall on 2 consecutive days. It gave tourists a rare chance to observe heavy and thick blanket of snow on 04th& 05thFebruary 2022, after nearly a gap of more than 10 years.
Darjeeling town has a modest elevation of 6,800 feet. It gives snowfall amiss, more often than not and pleases the tourists with such spectacular show, on an average, once in 5 years or even longer. Upper reaches of Darjeeling, such as, Sandakphu and Phalut have an elevation in excess of 12,000 feet and therefore witness repeated bouts of snow during winters. Even, Tiger Hills has fairly high altitude of about 9,000 feet and becomes a popular attraction to view snowfall.
The remnant of cyclone Michaung lashed most parts of West Bengal with moderate to heavy showers. This weather system coupled with an extension of trough linked with western disturbance moving across the mountains resulted little early snow along the popular trekking route Sandakphu-Phalut stretch. Both the systems are on the verge of clearing plains and mountains, both, in the next 24 hours or so. Weather conditions are expected to become better and pleasant, across the region of state of West Bengal.