The weather of a place is determined by its location on the globe and the altitude of the place. Himachal Pradesh is located in the northern hemisphere, as far its position on the globe is concerned. In the Indian territory, it is one of the northernmost states.
Situated in the Himalayas, along the Dhauladhar ranges, some parts of the State are located at a higher altitude. Overall the altitude in the state varies from 450-6500 meters. Naturally, the climate conditions here vary as well.
In general, the State has 3 main seasons, which are summer, monsoon and winter. The terrain can be categorized into:
- The Lower &Shivalik Zone
- The Mid-Hill Zone
- The High-Hill and Trans-Himalayan Zone
Lower Altitude districts : – The districts Solan, Bilaspur, Una, Kangra and Hamirpur form a part of the Lower and Shivalik Zone.
Mid Hill Zone :- The Chamba, Kullu, Shimla and Sirmaur districts are a part of the Mid-Hill Zone.
The High-Hill and Trans-Himalayan Zone :- The Lahaul, Spiti, and Kinnaur districts are a part of the High Hill and Trans-Himalayan Zone.
Spring in Himachal Pradesh
Starting February, the spring sets in and the snow starts to melt in the lower altitude areas. In these regions, these months bring a pleasant weather and the overall climate becomes very comfortable. From April to June the summer sets and the lower altitude areas become very warm, with temperatures reaching the 30s. The higher altitude areas remain cool, however.
Summers in Himachal Pradesh
In the summers, for areas with an altitude between 450-900 meters, the weather varies from a sub-humid tropical, kind of hot. For the altitude between 900-1800 meters, the weather is usually warm.
For altitudes varying from 1900-2400 meters, the weather iscold and sometimes it even gets humid. The higher altitude areas between 2400-4800 meters remain very cold and even have quite a few glaciers.
Monsoon in Himachal Pradesh
The end of June is when the monsoon usually sets in. This may get delayed by a few weeks at most. The rain turn the already green landscapes more lush and bright. Himachal Pradesh has quite a few perennial rivers, but in the monsoon, the water in the rivers rises.
Since the snow in the higher altitude melts around this time, streams and rivulets become a common presence in various valley around the State.
The monsoon season does bring frequent landslides to some regions. The highest rainfall is recorded in the Dharamshala district, with almost 3400 mm recorded on an average. The driest District is that of Spiti. Since Spiti is surrounded by tall mountains, it rains very little here, with a mere 50 mm average rainfall.
Winters in Himachal Pradesh
Starting October, the cold start to set in, bringing in the winters. The areas with an altitude of over 4500 meters remain covered in snow all around the year. At areas with an elevation of 3000 meters and above, the snowfall starts in in the end of November, all the way to March.
The highest that the temperature in the state usually rises to is an average of 28 degrees. The lowest temperature usually goes down to -18 degree. Overall, the climate in Himachal Pradesh is pleasant around the year, making it the perfect tourist destination.