...but where's snow? - Darjeeling freezing...

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By VIVEK CHHETRI
  • Published 16.01.07
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Jan. 15: Darjeeling went sub-zero at noon today and the north Bengal hills were freezing, but there’s not much to thrill the snow chasers yet.

At 12.12 today, a digital temperature display in the heart of the hill resort read -0.4 degrees Celsius. Two minutes earlier, the temperature had touched freezing point and holidaymakers dressed in their heaviest woollens began celebrating in anticipation of a snowfall.

The mercury hovered around the afternoon mark till late in the evening, but there was no snow.

A slight drizzle raised expectations but snow it didn’t, and the weatherman said it was unlikely to in the next few days. “There is not enough cloud cover for the snowfall. Darjeeling will, however, experience frozen ground conditions because of the presence of mist,” said Subir Sarkar, the man in charge of the weather station at North Bengal University.

Apart from 3 Mile, which experiences frost through the winter, parts of Ghoom and Jorebunglow have already experienced frozen ground conditions.

The last time it had snowed in Darjeeling was on January 23, 2005.

Satish Gurung, a resident of Toongsoong, said: “The chill is exciting, but there’s nothing like the romance of snow.”

Anybody associated with tourism would echo Gurung. Snow brings people from the plains in hordes.