Skiing on its own is not the safest winter sport out there. Take an off-piste ride in a new area and you can get the excitement and adrenaline rush you were looking for. But for some, just skiing is not extreme enough, so they need to be taken with a helicopter in a conflict area and dropped on the slopes of Himalaya, in the Kashmir region.
I have to admit, nothing sounds as thrilling as skiing near the ceasefire line in the Himalayan region between India and Pakistan, all that after a breathtaking view you’ve enjoyed during your helicopter ride. That’s probably why foreign joy riders are making ski operator Gulmarg Heliski think that have just launched their heli-skiing service in January think they have hit the jackpot! Through his business, adventure tourists are the first ones to reconquer Kashmir, a quite popular destination for honeymooners, skiers and trekkers before the aggravation of the Indian-Pakistani conflict.
“Gulmarg is an adventure destination. There are endless possibilities for heli-ski runs in this area,” said Martin Jones, one of the directors of Gulmarg Heliski. “The future for heli-ski in Kashmir is very good, and Inshallah, we will return next winter with big business.”
During the six-week heli-skiing season that has just ended, about 300 tourists embarked on this amazing adventure. And they loved every minute of it!
“I have discovered a safe heaven for skiers in Himalayas, unparalleled adventure, amazing powder riding,” Lel Tones, a 40-year-old skier from California, told Reuters. “Such spectacular terrain, I personally think access to these Gulmarg mountains for a skier is a special opportunity.”
So if you’re bored of you usual extreme adventures and want something a little over the edge to help you feel your hurt pumping wildly, plan your trip to Kashmir and try out the newest kid on the adventure tourism scene – heli-skiing in conflict areas!