Trekking & Mountaineering :
The trekking season in Himachal Pradesh runs from mid-May to mid-october. The Himachal Pradesh tourist office has a brochure on trekking which briefly details a number of treks in the state. They also have three excellent large scale maps of Himachal Pradesh, invaluable for trekkers. In the lower country in the Kullu or Manali valleys,
At Naldera, 23 km. from beyond Shimla is one of the oldest golf courses in India. The course, whose topography is absolutely natural, was originally placed by the British Viceroy of India, Lord Curzon, at the turn of the century. This is a par 68, nine hole course which is regarded as one of the most challenging in the country. Annandale, in Shimla has nine hole course managed by the army and there is another at the exquisite glade of Khajjiar, 22 km from Dalhousie and 24 km from Chamba.
For high mountain thrills perhaps nothing can surpass the magic of heli-skiing. Under a deep blue sky, you are carried by a helicopter to a snow-draped peak. It is a thrilling experience as you rapidly zoom down the slopes. The sport is available in the area bound by Hanuman Tibba, Rohtang Pass, Deo Tibba and Chanderkhani Pass near the resort town of Manali (Kullu). A major feature is the compactness of heli skiing area. A sortie of ten minutes can carry the skiers to the top of a 14000 feet high slope.
Kufri, near Shimla is one of the oldest places in India to be associated with skiing and the slopes are still in use during winter. Above Kufri, the Mahasu ridge also has good slopes. Comprehensive facilities exist at Narkanda, 64 km from Shimla. There is a range of slopes, including a beginner’s run, an advanced slope and a slalom run. Manali (Kullu) offers a variety of courses and facilities for skiing.
Ice – Skating :
The Shimla ice-skating rink has the largest open-air area with naturally frozen ice in this part of the world. Ice-skating normally begins in early December and carries on to February. Clear skies and low temperatures provide series of uninterrupted sessions. There are two sessions every day, in the morning and in the evening.
The bald peak of Billing, above the Buddhist monastery of Bir in Kangra, has been the venue for five national and three international hang-gliding rallies since 1984. A fairly recent sport that is steadily gaining popularity, para-gliding is possible at various places in the state. Places where para-gliding is done regularly are – Bundla Dhar near Bilaspur, in the kullu valley and at Intkali in the Pabbar valley near Rohru in Shimla district.
An anglers paradise, Himachal has several spots for both trout and mahaseer as well as other fish. Acclaimed as the best sport fish in the world, both Brown and Rainbow Trout are to be found in Himachal’s streams. Upstreams of Rohru in the Pabbar valley (Shimla), there are several spots ideal for fishing. Kinnaur’s Baspa river in the Sangla valley also holds trout. Fish also abounds in Uhl river near Barot. The picturesque Kangra valley has several spots that offer mahaseer river carp. The reservoir of the Maharana Pratap sagar right up to the town of Dehra has good spots. The waters of the Gobind Sagar near Bilaspur also have a variety of fish.
Water And River Sports :
The Maharana Pratap Sagar reservoir in Kangra with its 42 km length and 2 km breadth, offers a variety of activities in close collaboration with the Directorate of Mountaineering and Allied Sports. River-rafting or white-water rafting as it is also called is swiftly making Himachal a focus for the sport. For a torrent of adrenalin to gush through every vein and surge over every muscle you can race over the State’s river rapids in an inflatable rubber dinghy. Sport is now being held on the Sutlej near Shimla on the Beas near Kullu, the Ravi near Chamba and Chandra in Lahaul.
Mountain Cycling :
Gear yourself for high adventure with an expedition on cycles. You can pedal your way past high passes or simply make a day-adventure. The tour can be coupled with camping and can be carried on for several weeks over diverse terrain. The lower regions of the State – Kangra, Una, Hamirpur and Bilaspur offer gentle routes.
Mountaineering And Rock Climbing :
Rock climbing is often seen as the basic stage for mountain climbing. It can also be treated as an independent sport, since it is basically climbing a rock face, using only hands and feet with a safety rope. The area around Manali, presently forms the core of mountaineering in Himachal. The Chandra Bhaga ranges, the Pir Panjal and Dhalaudhar ranges are existing. The State also has several other areas where Institute of Mountaineering and Allied Sports, Manali and its branch at Dharamsala (Kangra) offer this activity