Weather Conditions in Spiti
Some holiday destinations can be enjoyed all year round, while there are others that really come into their own for a short time. Like Spiti Valley. It is one of the most beautiful travel destinations in India. Tall windswept mountains, deep blue sky and no pollution. Like many northernmost holiday destinations, Spiti Valley is a rugged place that commands your respect along with your appreciation. Respect for the sheer power of nature at play here and appreciation for the stunning vistas and jaw-dropping beauty.
The Valley remains cut off from rest of the country for almost 6 months in a year. The thick snowbanks block the mountain passes making them impassable. Even the Shimla route, which remains motorable throughout the year, becomes difficult to pass. So the best time to travel to Spiti Valley is during the summer months. The roads open up and the weather warms up enough for you to enjoy your holidays.
This period sees extreme winter; it is definitely not the best time to go to Spiti Valley. Most of the hotels are shut and the roads are snowed in. The winter temperatures drop well below -20 deg. C. In such intense cold, there isn’t any running water even in the toilets. You will have to use the dry pit toilets. So, if you decide to visit Spiti during these months, make sure you carry plenty of toilet paper and hand sanitizer.
Homestay is the only option available during these months. So ensure that you carry a warm and comfortable sleeping bag and appropriate woollen clothes. Most of the internal roads remain closed during this period as do most of the tourist services.
April is the month when Spiti Valley begins to wake up from its long winter slumber. The snow is just starting to melt and the roads begin opening up. Though the Kunzum Pass doesn’t open until June, most of the roads are operational. This would be the best time to visit Spiti Valley just to see it emerge like a sleeping flower and take its smiling place under the sun.
It is not yet the peak tourist season, but the start. It is a peaceful time to be in Spiti. The roads are deserted and the tourist count is low. You would consider this the best time to visit Spiti Valley if you’re one of those early birds looking to get a jump on other tourists. The prospect of having all that beauty and adventure all to yourself is indeed a tempting one.
This is the time when the tourist season really kicks off. The Kunzum Pass opens to an influx of tourists, mostly bikers seeking the thrill of a mountain ride, into the valley. For them, this is the best time to visit Spiti Valley. Not only are the passes open, there are plenty of water crossings along the way, which are mostly runoffs from the rivers and the melting snow.
While the rest of the country is reeling under heat or rains, Spiti Valley gears up to offer some spectacular holidays. The hotels are now fully open and there is a definite buzz of tourists in the valley. So factor in this hustle and bustle in your travel time.
August is monsoon time around Spiti Valley. While Spiti Valley itself receives hardly any rain, all the roads leading here experience good monsoon. The road conditions further deteriorate with the increasing rain. Driving on wet mountain roads, especially like the ones found here, is not recommended.
Then you’ll have to contend with heavy vehicular traffic since August is peak Apple season. The trucks bearing the fruit are out in large numbers on the highways. On the bright side, you will get a great bargain on apples. Do pick up a case or two for loved ones back home.
Autumn takes over Spiti Valley from September to Mid-October. The orange leaves present a stunning contrast to the cool blue of the sky. The temperatures drop and hover around 2 – 3 deg. C. But there’s no snow yet. If you’re hoping to catch snow, this is not the time to travel to Spiti Valley. On the other hand, this is the time of the apples!
You should try the apples here at least once. That first juicy bite will encompass all the sweetness and the purity of the entire Spiti Valley. Snowfall starts at Kunzum Pass at the end of September, signalling the onset of winter. Do not forget to carry your woollens and thermals.
Spiti Valley begins to shut down for the winter during November. The temperatures plummet to sub-zero levels and water begins freezing in the pipes. The hotels begin to shut down as running water becomes a luxury. Most locals rely on hand pumps for their supply of water. The tourist buzz begins to simmer down as the entire valley starts preparing for the long winter months.
Now that you know what to expect at Spiti Valley around the year, it is up to you to choose the best time to visit Spiti Valley. For the adventurers, roughing it out in the cold would be the thrill of a lifetime while summer would be appropriate for the seasoned traveller.
No matter what you decide, Spiti Valley will carve a special place in your heart and have you yearning to come back for more. Let SOTC help you find the suitable time to travel to Spiti. All you have to do is pick an SOTC Himachal holiday package.