(Please note that this blog-post and images in it are from the LAST WINTER, ie. from January- February 2019. They are NOT from this winter season starting from December 2019)
It is now February 2019 and the skiing season is in full swing in Auli. This winter Auli and Joshimath experienced record snowfall- the kind that is seen once in a decade. The snowfall in the area around Christmas and New Year was so heavy that for almost 3 weeks Auli was unreachable by road. Tourists who had travelled to Auli by cars or buses were unable to drive back and many of them were forced to return leaving their snowbound vehicles behind. Even Joshimath was not reachabe for two days.
All this of course is good news for those who now want to visit Joshimath to experience the snow and do some skiing. These days Auli is at its most magnificient and the road to Auli has been cleared for vehicular traffic. There is at least 3 feet of snow at Auli, and the conditions are perfect for those who want to try out some serious skiing or just play around in the snow.
Several groups of local youth have set up fully equipped stalls at Auli to provide skiing experience to visitors. When you reach Auli by road you can see them near the parking lot and around the chair-lift base. Others have set up their stalld around the upper station of the ropeway(cable-car). They usually charge Rs 500 for an hour of skiing, Rs 1000 for the whole day and Rs 6000 for a week-long training session. Rates are flexible and will depend on your negotiating skill and tourist traffic. The packages include all the necessary equipments as well as instructions and demos. The GMVN Tourist Rest House also provides skiing courses but their rates will be higher than that of the informal arrangement set up by the local youth.
It is expected that skiing conditions will last till at least mid-March 2019.