Srinagar, Jan 7: The famous ski resort of Gulmarg was the coldest place in Jammu and Kashmir with a low of minus 11.2 degrees Celsius as the night temperature across the valley plummeted by several degrees due to open skies.
However, the minimum temperature in most of the places including the summer capital Srinagar still stayed above freezing point but expected to fall further in the coming days due to clear skies, a spokesman of the MeT office told PTI here.
After several days of overcast conditions owing to Western Disturbance which hit the region on Monday and resulted in snowfall, the winter sun shone again today providing relief to the people from the sweeping icy winds.
The snow-bound Gulmarg, a major attraction for tourists visiting the valley during winter, witnessed a drop of 3.2 degrees compared to the previous night. Kargil in frontier region of Ladakh was the second coldest place with a minimum of minus 10.4 degrees Celsius almost same as the previous night.
The nearby Leh town, also in the cold desert of Ladakh, witnessed an increase of 2.3 degrees in the night temperature which settled at minus 7 degrees Celsius, the spokesman said. The famous hill resort of Pahalgam, which serves as the base camp during annual Amarnath yatra and experienced snowfall recently, recorded a minimum of 0.5 degree Celsius, marking an increase of three degrees. The minimum temperature recorded a dip in Srinagar as the mercury settled at 0.9 degree Celsius compared to 2.9 degrees Celsius the previous night.
The north Kashmir's Kupwara town was the only other recorded place in the valley where the night temperature stayed below the freezing point. The minimum temperature in the town fell to minus 0.6 degree Celsius from 0.8 degree Celsius yesterday, the spokesman said.
He said the night temperature also recorded a decline in the towns of Qazigund and Kokernag as the places in south Kashmir registered a low of 1.5 and 0.2 degree Celsius, respectively.
Kashmir is in the midst of the 40-day-long harshest phase of winter, which began on December 21 and will continue till the end of this month. Known as Chillai-Kalan in local parlance, the chances of snowfall are most frequent and maximum during this period.
The 40-day period is followed by a 20-day long 'Chillai-Khurd' (small cold) and a 10-day long 'Chillai Bachha' (baby cold). The MeT Office has said the weather would remain mostly dry in the coming days. The weather is expected to remain dry in the coming days as a result of which the night temperature is expected to fall further while the days will be warmer, the spokesman said.