Heliskiing lures skiers in Jammu and Kashmir

Gulmarg (Jammu and Kashmir), Jan 22(ANI): Heliskiing, or using helicopters to reach less accessible skiing trails, has been luring skiers to Gulmarg in Jammu and Kashmir, boosting tourism in the region.

Many local and foreign skiers have flocked to the area to use the heliskiing service.

"I am pretty excited about the whole prospect of getting up there myself. It's been two or three drops already. Gulmarg Heliski has started the operation this year but it has been four or five year project and a dream to bring it to Gulmarg," said Solomon, a skier from New Zealand.

"I mean, Gulmarg is itself a place that deserves something like heliskiing because it is already such a glamorous destination for many people all over the world," he added.

Heliskiing is expected to encourage tourism in the region, as the high peaks of the region attract people from all over the world.

"This is something new to the region of Jammu and Kashmir. When the news will spread in many ways, be it Internet or verbally, people will come here, boosting tourism of the region," said Rajiv Chauhan, a skier from Mumbai.

"Since more tourists would flock to the place, the income of the locals would also increase gradually; everyone would earn profit this way," he added.

Martin Jose, the organizer and director of Himalayan Sports, said the closeness of the Pir Panjal range to Srinagar airport attracts skiers.

"Riders came about five years ago, thought there was incredible potential here in Gulmarg for heliskiing in Pir Panjal Mountains. There are many peaks here that international skiers from Europe would love to come and ski," Jose said.

According to reports, presently 65 skiers from different countries including Russia, New Zealand and France are present in Gulmarg enjoying heliskiing. (ANI)

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