Ski India 2021: Gulmarg

Gulmarg AM Ski patrol forecast. Photo: Holly Walker

We’re currently putting together an Indian ski touring trip based out of the Gulmarg area. If you’re looking for the next big backcountry skiing destination that’s oozing with culture, adventure, altitude and just happens to get a heap of snow then Galmarg should be top of your list. A small ski town, Gulmarg is situated in the Pir Panjal range of Northern India, one of 6 mountain ranges that make up the Himalayas. The Pir Panjal are also the first mountain range to be hit by the storms that sweep across the Indus Plains so you know the area receives a ton of snow! 15m on average per year in fact. Skiing Magazine has called Gulmarg one of the top 10 snowiest resorts in the world!

With a gondola to bump us up into the mountains we can really maximize our slack country ski touring or use the lifts to jump start some higher elevation ski touring and ski mountaineering. The gondola is one of the highest in the world topping out at 13,054 ft or 3,890m!! From there you have 4,250 ft vertical powder runs (1,300m vertical) at your feet! Of course from there we can explore this exotic mountain range on our touring skis or split boards and experience some skiing amazingly long backcountry pow runs!

Trip Details:

Length:​​ 12 days (14 with air travel)
Cost:​​ TBD but expect something in the $4000 CAD range
Dates:​​ Feb 5-16, 2021
Availability:​​ 10 of 12 spots still available

Itinerary:

  • Feb 5: Fly to New Delhi
  • Feb 6: Fly to Srinagar & Transfer to Gulmarg
  • Feb 7 through 14: Ski Lift / Taxi assisted ski touring
  • Feb 15: Travel to Srinagar for a final night
  • Feb 16: Fly to New Delhi and then on home

Accommodation:

Accommodation on the mountain is still getting organized as bookings cannot be made this far in advance. We will likely book into Khyber Himalayan Resort and Spa or Highlands Park. Of course we have to have and end-of-trip wrap up and that will take place on a houseboat, at a much much lower elevation, on Dal Lake in Srinigar Kashmir.

Your Guides:

Our guiding team will consist of two ACMG certified guides who will work in conjunction some local talent to provide a safe but very fun trip.

Monte Johnston, Lead Guide & Adventure Guru

An ACMG / IFMGA Mountain Guide , Monte calls Squamish, BC home. After graduating university with an engineering degree he found he wasn’t satisfied only chasing his passion for the mountains on weekends and evenings. This led him away from working behind a desk into a life of guiding, avalanche forecasting and movie/film safety work. Monte has since climbed and skied all over the world. In the summer he can be found guiding anything from remote mountain peaks to warm sun kissed rock across BC and Alberta. In the winter Monte splits his time between heli-skiing in Bella Coola and ski touring in Japan, the Coast Range and any other cool places he can find some powder.

Holly Walker, Guide & Gulmarg Vet.

Although Holly was born in Vancouver B.C. to a family of skiers and mountain lovers, she was swept away from Canada’s West Coast at age 10 to lead a vagabond lifestyle around the world. Now settled in Squamish, Holly is an ACMG Apprentice Ski & Hiking Guide and shares a new appreciation for the mountains she grew up with. A past Freeride World Tour athlete, she now spends her winters ski touring and heliski guiding. She fills her summers leading hiking trips in her backyard – the mountains of Southwest B.C.

Included:

  • 9 night’s accommodation in Gulmarg
  • Final night’s accommodation on a houseboat on Dal Lake in Srinagar
  • All breakfasts and dinners in Gulmarg & Srinagar
  • Greeting at Srinagar Airport
  • Transfers to and from Srinagar Airport to Gulmarg.
  • 10 days of skiing
  • Lift tickets
  • Taxi rides back to Gulmarg when skiing outside of the resort
  • Black Sheep Adventure Sports Swag
Acres and acres of ski terrain and just two skiers. Photo: Holly Walker

Excluded:

  • Flights to/from India (you need to fly to Delhi and then Srinagar)
  • Indian Tourist Visa
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal equipment
  • Hotels and food in Dehli
  • Lunches, snacks or beverages

Fine Print:

ACMG
Canadian Avalanche Association