The entire tribal belt and higher reaches of Himachal Pradesh were lashed by heavy snowfall and rain on Saturday. There were reports of more than 90 cm of snow across the famous Rohtang Pass which has now been closed to all vehicular traffic.

The Lahaul-Spiti headquarters at Keylong had around 20 cm of snow while Khoksar, the entry point to Lahaul, recorded more than 30 cm of snow.

The higher reaches of Pangi and Bharmaur in Chamba district also had a heavy snowfall, as did the Dhauladhar range in Kangra district.

The lower areas of the hill State experienced moderate to heavy rainfall.

Tourist traffic falls

Intermittent rain and icy winds lashed the capital town of Shimla but it is yet to experience the season’s first snowfall.

There is a sudden decrease in tourist traffic here with the onset of an early winter. Old-timers and senior citizens have already started moving out to nearby plains for the winter vacation.

Non-availability of central heating in a majority of hotels here is discouraging tourists from prolonging their stay in the hill station.