Adventures in Shimla
The Himalayas offer some of the most thrilling and challenging mountaineering opportunities in the world. The Mountaineering Institute at Manali organises expeditious each year, and it has regional centres at Dharamsala, Bharmour and Jispa which offer adventure courses as well. Patalsu and Sitidhar are among the easier peaks in the Manali region while other popular climbs are to Deo Tibba, Moulkila, Hanuman Tibba, Centre Peak and Indresen.
The passes and the valleys cutting through the mountain ranges of Himachal offer a variety of trekking opportunities. The best terrain for trekking lies bwetween the gentle Shiwaliks and the tough upper reaches of the Greater Himalayas. Trekking is surely one of the best ways to explore Himachal. Some of the popular treks are from Manali to Beas Kund, from Manali to Brighu Lake and from Dalhousie to Khajjiar. The more intrepid can explore the pristine beauty of Chandratal, cross the Bara Lacha Pass to Keylong, the Rohtant Pass from Manali, or the Dhauladhar and Pir Panjal ranges to Lahaul and Kullu. July to September are ideal months for trekking in Lahaul and Bharmour, while in Narkanda, Manali and Kangra regions it is possible between April and November. Patalsu, Bharmour, and Manali offer good possibilities for rock-climbing enthusiasts.
The sport of river rafting has gained popularity in the last few years as enthusiasts have discovered the tremendous possibilities offered by the snow-fed rivers of the Himalayas. The season extends from October to late April, with a break in January when the water is too cold. The best rivers for this sport are the Beas, the Spiti, the Chandrabhaga and the Satluj which has spectacular rapids upto Tattapani.
In the winter months some of the snow-covered slopes of Himachal become ideal for skiing, and heli-skiing is becoming increasingly popular. The Mountaineering Institute of Manali orgainses skiing courses from January onwards, while the Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation does so simultaneously at Narkanda.
At Solang, 10 km from Manali, the ski slopes are set against a backdrop of glaciers and majestic peaks. The slopes of Kufri and Narkanda, 16 km and 64 km respectively, from Shimla, are ideal for recreational skiing.
Angling, too, is fast gaining popularity. Trout is found in the Beas river near Manali, as well as the Pabbar river at Rohru, 120 km from Shimla, which is considered an angler's paradise. Mahseer is found around Dehra Gopipur, Nadaun and Pong reservoir. The tourist department in every district provides licences.
Billing, in Kangra valley is said to be amongst the finest sites in the world for hang-gliding. It hosts India's only international hang-gliding festival. The ideal time for this sport, for which all equipment is provided, is during March and April and from mid-August to November.
n Shimla, you can also enjoy Camping, Bungee Jumping, Cycling, Horse Riding, Para Gliding, Safaries, Skating, Trekking, Wild Life, Yak Riding and lot more.