The Himalayas scenery is among the most spectacular in the world

Himalayan mountains Archives

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Animals of the Himalayan Mountains

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Himalayan Forests

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Tourist potential

The Himalayas scenery is among the most spectacular in the world. It attracts thousands of tourists from India and abroad. Most of the summer resorts, known as hill stations are located in the Himalayas. These include Shimla, Mussoorie, Nainital, Darjeeling, Srinagar, Ranikhet, Almora, Chail, etc. A number of sacred shrines are also located in the Himalayas. The most popular of these are the shrines of Badrinath, Kedarnath, Amarnath, Vaishno Devi, Kailash – Mansarovar, etc. The Himalayas are great attraction for adventure seekers as they provide ample opportunities for hiking, climbing, river - rafting, skiing, etc.

Forests

The Himalayas are rich in forest resources. On the lower reaches of the Himalayas are tropical and sub- tropical forests yielding good quality timber. On the middle and upper reaches are found the coniferous and deciduous soft and hard woods, providing wood for match – sticks, pepper pulp, resins, turpentine oil, various medicinal plants, etc. The Himalayas are home to a wide variety of wild animals like yak, snow leopards, bears, red panda, tigers, and elephants, etc.

Feeding ground of perennial Rivers

The glaciers in the Himalayas give rise to many perennial rivers. These include Ganga, Yamuna, Sharda, Ghaghra, Kosi, Gandak and Brahmaputra. These rivers not only provide water for drinking but also for year -round irrigation in Pakistan and North Indian plains. The rivers originating in the Himalayas are a major sources of hydel power. This is because the Himalayas topography makes the rivers to form rapids and waterfalls and provides ideal conditions for the creation of reservoirs. These reservoirs can be utilised for the generation of hydroelectricity by constructing dams across the rivers.

Climatic barrier

The Himalayas act as an effective barrier by blocking the inflow of cold, dry air masses into north India during winter. They, thus, protect northern India from severe cold winters. During the summer season, the Himalayas deflect the moisture – laden monsoon winds and cause the moist winds to bring rain to the North Indian plains and the Brahmaputra valley. In he absence of the Himalayas, the monsoon would have travelled further northwards.

The Himalayas form a defensive rampart of India against invasion by land. They act as a barrier to invaders, through small bodies of traders can pass over it through difficult routes. The mountains in the north – east are so steep and so densely forest – covered that they are communication with the neighbouring countries a difficult process. Thus, the Indian subcontinent developed a distinct culture of its own.

Haridwar Photo

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