Srinagar: Upper reaches of Kashmir and Ladakh region received snowfall for the second day on Monday, prompting the authorities to suspend traffic on vital Srinagar-Leh National Highway and roads leading to border areas of Kupwara and Bandipora districts.
Six inches to two feet of snow accumulated on the ground at various places including the famous Ski resort of Gulmarg, 55 km from here in North Kashmir.
The snowfall rendered the Srinagar-Leh National Highway, the only road linking Kashmir with rest of the state, and Kupwara-Tangdhar and Bandipora-Gurez roads which connect the border areas of North Kashmir with Srinagar, unsafe for traffic, an officials spokesman said, adding that continuous snowfall is hampering the road clearance operation.
However, traffic movement was normal on Srinagar-Jammu National Highway - the only road linking Kashmir with rest of the country, despite incessant rains lashing the plains, including Srinagar.
According to officials, heavy snowfall left the infiltration routes along the Line of Control (LoC) in North Kashmir Kupwara, Baramulla and Bandipora districts blocked.
"Over two feet of snow had accumulated in the high altitude areas near the LOC, being used by militants to sneak into this side from across the border," the sources said.
In the border district of Kupwara, Sadna top received two feet of snow followed by Farkian top in Karnah (one feet) and Z-Gali in Machil (one feet), officials said.
Gurez sector in Bandipora district also received snowfall ranging between six inches to two feet, officials said.
A snow blanket has completely covered the ski resort of Gulmarg, much to the delight of the tourists who have arrived at the hill resort to enjoy the snow, they said.
The hill stations of Sonamarg on Srinagar-Leh highway and peripheral areas of Pahalgam in South Kashmir, including the holy cave shrine of Amarnath, also received heavy snowfall.
Reports of snowfall was also received from the entire Kargil district of Ladakh region.
Meanwhile, the rains in the plains ended the long-dry spell in the region which was badly affected by frequent power cuts and irregular water supply.
The rains also brought relief to the people from intense cold as the overcast sky throughout the night raised the minimum temperature by several degrees, the officials said.
Pahalgam, where the night temperature fell below zero degrees Celsius yesterday, recorded 3.6 degrees Celsius today, the MeT office said.
Gulmarg witnessed the coldest night in the valley yesterday with the hill resort recording minus 2.0 degree Celsius.