Adventure Tourism in Kashmir
Ice skating has a totally different meaning in Kashmir. There are no fixed locations or grounds but almost unending frozen rivers that delight every ice skater. Frozen rivers and rivulets in winter present immense scopes for adventure tourism in Kashmir, of which ice skating is one of its kind.
Winters in Kashmir valley are thrilling as the minimum temperature drop below freezing point. During winters, lakes of the valley transform into the sheer sheet of ice. Outdoor skating rinks are set up in frozen lakes and valleys of Gulmarg, Pahalgam, Leh and Kargil in Kashmir where the skating lovers can assemble to either participate in the regional and national level competition or simply enjoy some fun times.
The months of January and February are the best time to enjoy the ice-skating activity in the valley of Kashmir.
Skating lovers can get their own equipments for skating or else can hire from local shops at reasonable rates. Ice skating is anything but easy. Most tourists try aping the seasoned villagers and often make fun of themselves. Since the majority of the visitors are first timers, they don’t mind either slipping or falling because of the fun quotient. Only after falling a couple of times they get the hang of it and even a few meters of skating gives them immense joy!
Pahalgam recently had its first Ice Skating Rink in May, 2016. Constructed at a cost of Rs 3.0 Crores, it has a roof with complete infrastructure like lights. It will have night skating facility also which will attract tourists in large numbers. Now Pahalgam too, will be an all-season tourist destination.
Best Learner Tip
Bent knees, upright torso and heads up is the best posture for beginners. Avoid the natural tendency to slouch or bend forward to look down at the ice as it leads to falls.