Winter Sports | Sonamarg hosts first-ever Snow Shoe event

Winter Sports | Sonamarg hosts first-ever Snow Shoe event
GK Photo

Srinagar, Nov 28: The ‘Meadow of Gold’ Sonamarg on Sunday hosted its first-ever SnowShoe event with local athletes competing in the Invitational SnowShoe run conducted by J&K SnowShoe Association.

The event that was aimed to promote Sonamarg which falls in the Ganderbal District of Kashmir as another winter sports destination saw local athletes of Ganderbal participating.

According to the statement issued, the athletes were the first time ever taking part in the SnowShoe activity and it was more of an introduction to SnowShoe for them.

“SnowShoe sport which is very popular in Europe and USA has been getting popular in India as well with its base in Kashmir. Gulmarg which is a major winter sport of J&K has been hosting SnowShoe events throughout the season. To look for alternatives and other destinations, Association on Sunday held an invitational event in Sonamarg. The event was held in collaboration with the Department of Tourism Kashmir and District Administration Ganderbal,” the statement said.

Present on the occasion was well-known sportsperson of J&K Mir Bilquis, Social activist and sports promoter of Ganderbal Farooq Ganderbali, President J&K SnowShoe Association Tariq Ahmed Zargar, General Secretary Dr Altaf ur Rehman and Association organising secretary Gulzar Khan.

Giving details about the event, J&K SnowShoe Association President Tariq Ahmad Zargar said, “It was the first ever SnowShoe event held in Sonamarg. It aimed to explore other winter sports destinations of Kashmir. Sonamarg is a well-known tourist destination but in winter it remains off-limit for Tourists. With events like this, it can also be promoted as a winter destination”.

“SnowShoe is such an activity that doesn’t need infrastructural build-up. Anyone who is associated with normal running can do it, and doesn’t require special training as well,” he said.

Farooq Ganderbali said that the District Administration of Ganderbal is serious about promoting Sonamarg as a winter destination as well.

“District Administration Ganderbal want to promote Sonamarg for winter as well. These types of events will play a pivotal role in that. I am sure more such events will be held in the coming winter and we will see Sonamarg turning out as a winter sports hub,” he said.

Dr Altaf ur Rehman who is General Secretary of the Association said that Association is looking into conducting SnowShoe activities all over J&K.

“We know that SnowShoe events can be conducted wherever the snow is. Apart from holding events throughout the season in Gulmarg, Association will be conducting events in Sonamarg, Dodapathri, Yousmarg, Pahalgam, and Patnitop as well. In short, the association will try to explore all areas where there is snow,” he said.

“From December 27 to 30, J&K will be hosting the 7th National SnowShoe Championship. For that, we have been assured full support from the Tourism department. The event will witness the participation of more than 150 athletes from 18 States, and Union Territories,” he added.

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