Skiing gaining popularity among Gulmarg youth

January 29th, 2009 - 8:19 pm ICT by ANI  

Gulmarg, Jan 29 (ANI): Jammu and Kashmir’’s Gulmarg, a bowl shaped plateau at an altitude of about 8,500 feet in the Pir Panjal ranges is a favourite destination for tourists to indulge in winter sports.
Attempts are on by local sports authorities to popularize skiing among the local youngsters by organizing sport events and competitions. It is hoped that it would fascinate more and more children and youngsters from local areas besides tourists.
The initiative was at display when a skiing competition was organised here recently.
According to the organiser and chairman of the Winter Games Federation of Kashmir, Mohammad Yousuf, the championship aimed to familiarize children with snowsports at an early age.
“We thought that we would start from Sri nagar. We invited students from schools and colleges, and organised a competition for them. Many school children participated in the competition. Our main motive is to generate interest among children and motivate them so that they take up skiing with enthusiasm,” said Mohammad Yousuf
About 50 children from various schools across Srinagar participated in the championship and demanded that similar events in the future be organised.
Haniya Jan, one participant, exclaimed that she was very happy, as such events gave the children an equal opportunity with elders to participate in skiing.
Children hoped that such events would help them to improve and learn skiing skills in the future.
“…..if children are learning by watching adults then its good for them. And this way they are also moving forward step by step,” said Umar Nabi, another participant.
As winter sets in, the entire landscape in Gulmarg changes from the lush green meadows of summers into the shinning white skiing slopes beckoning winter sports lovers and adventurers to its fold.
The slopes in Gulmarg varying between 8,700 and 10,500 feet are the highest ski runs in the country.
Gulmarg also offers heli-skiing, another breathtaking winter sport. It is Asia’’s only heli-skiing resort, supposed to be the best option for heliskiing players, after Canada.
Skiing requires a suitable landscape, which has a combination of snow and mountain slopes.
The game is popular in European nations like Austria and Switzerland, parts of North America, New Zealand and South American Andes. These countries have built up sufficient sport infrastructure for tourists to enjoy and have a gala time. (ANI)

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