Good News! Siachen Glacier Open For Tourists

This looks intriguing and exciting for all the traveller since ages who have been waiting for this chance from the government to happen. The Indian army had regularly carried out their operation and people used to go to these mysterious glaciers for expeditions until 1970. But later they stopped it in 1984 when war broke out between India and Pakistan over the Siachen Glacier. 

We all know how precious this belt is for India as Pakistan and China are the countries with whom India has always struggled on borders. Numerous decades passed with wars and flirtation due to power interface over the glacier. Why such fascination and power game on the glacier. What is the mystery and charm of Siachen that has made even the Britishers lure over it? And now when the Siachen glaciers open for tourists. 

 

Siachen Glacier Satellite View

Picture Credit (Wikipedia) – Siachen Glacier Satellite View

 

Let us see a few comments from –  Lt Gen BS Jaswal (Retd) Former Army Cdr, Northern Command

The idea of tourism in this area is not de novo. Since 2007, trekking activities have been undertaken by teams from the NDA, IMA, NCC and Military School, Chail. There is no reason why others can’t be permitted to delve in such ventures. He quotes that, today, the adventure has become the buzzword, so why not add adrenaline to the aspirants’ dreams?

It will also motivate the youngsters to join the fauj. It will help them repose faith in the Indian Army and the Air Force and convince them that the forces are capable of maintaining our territorial integrity and that they can operate and sustain in extreme climate and very hostile terrain. It will be a capability demonstration for our countrymen.

 

Exploration of Siachen Or Rose Glacier

Why rose glacier and what is the history of Siachen. The Siachen Glacier is one of the most discussed and significant glacier in the Himalayan Karakoram region. A Glacier with all the reasons to be famous and esteemed, not just for the Political agendas but also for expeditions and explorations. I shall clear this with a brief note below that will make you all understand the importance of Siachen glacier. At the time of Partition and a bit before that when the people at those times knew the glacier as a wonderful land in the Wilderness of the Himalayan Karakoram Mountains.

It is one of the largest Glaciers outside the Polar Regions and for the early Explorers and movies it was next to impossible to conquer and explore such massive Glaciers. In fact, they could not believe that these huge glaciers could exist anywhere outside the Polar Regions.

 

coincidence-point-of-Siachen-and-Baltoro-glaciers-75-km-64-km

Picture Credit (Wikipedia)

The first-ever credit for Siachen exploration goes to Lady Fanny Bullock and her husband William Hunter Workman. They were a rich couple and travelled to India on cycle and once they got to know the Himalayas, they could not go back for long. They both fell in love with the Himalayas forever. During their trip, they discovered some unexpected mountains, snow peaks and unseen glaciers in the Himalayas. With the help of local potters, they explored the unseen of the glaciers in the valley. Due to limitations, they did not enter Karakorams and other range fields around. 

 

FannyBullockWorkmanVotesWomen

Picture Credit (Wikipedia)

Siachen Glacier Open For Tourists

India has opened the doors of the Siachen area for tourists and tourism. Recently our Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has announced and tweeted about it. That the entire area has been opened for tourism.

rajnath singh tweet

Picture Credit (Twitter)

“Ladakh has tremendous potential in Tourism. Better connectivity in Ladakh would certainly bring tourists in large numbers. The Siachen area is now open for tourists and Tourism. From Siachen Base Camp to Kumar Post, the entire area has been opened for tourism purposes.”

 

rajnath singh siachen bridge shyok

Picture Credit (Twitter)

 

He was in Siachen recently for the inauguration of newly ‘Colonel Chewang Rinchen Bridge’ at Shyok River in Ladakh. It is when he announced about the potential which Ladakh tourism has. By making ways and doors open for the tourist it will have better avenues for the tourism industry and for travellers from across the world. The distillation of tourism in Siachen will act as a scalper to open innumerable opportunities. The time will tell, how the tourism industry will shape, but certainly, it is a piece of good news for travellers like me!

 

Un-kashmir-jammu-siachen-conflict

Picture Credit (Wikipedia) – Map issued by UN

 

Some of the statistics about Siachen Glacier

Elevation5,400 m

Area700 km²

LocationKarakoram Range; Controlled by India, disputed by Pakistan

Length 76 km (47 mi) using the longest route as is done when determining river lengths or 70 km (43 mi) if measuring from Indira Col[1]

Parent rangeKarakoram

 

 

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