This year the snow clearance operations on Srinagar Leh Highway for the season 2019-20 has started late from Srinagar and Drass sides. But it looks like the snow clearance is going to take momentum amidst heavy snowfall if the weather holds up in coming days.
It means that the butterflies in the stomach of all the adventure enthusiasts planning their upcoming trip to Leh Ladakh in 2019 will be more frequent 🙂 🙂 … The Srinagar Leh Highway Status 2019 is still closed but BRO is working hard to clear the heavy amount of snow from Sonamarg towards Zojila Pass on Srinagar side and from Drass towards Zojila on Kargil side.
You might also be interested in tracking the road status for Manali Leh Highway.
When will Srinagar Leh Highway opens in 2019?
After offering prayers, BRO commenced the snow clearance operations earlier this month from both Srinagar – Sonamarg side as well as Dras – Kargil side. They are targeting to open Srinagar – Zojila Pass – Kargil – Leh route as soon as possible in April to support the locals and tourists travel over Srinagar Leh Highway.
According to the sources, BRO is working hard to clear the huge amount of snow accumulated this year on Srinagar Leh Highway. The reports are that about 10 feet of snow is present on Sonamarg only and about 30 feet of snow is accumulated at Zojila Pass. It is not an easy task to cut through such huge amount of snow in that difficult terrain.
However, we shall wait for the day soon for the Srinagar – Leh Highway to open soon in April and let the adventure for 2019 begin 😀 …
There has been a heavy snowfall this year in the entire Himalayas and hence, this year opened of Srinagar Leh Highway will be delayed up to April end in contrast to last year when it opened March end itself. As per the authorities, there are about 30 feet of snow stretches that have to be cut around Zojila Pass and about 10-15 feet between Sonamarg to Zojila Pass.
It will be interesting to watch for the weather in coming days and as we all understand that these predictions are only the means of interest & hope to us, the mere mortals. It is weather and mountains gods which always have the last say when it comes to weather especially in the Himalayas 🙂 🙂 …
When does Srinagar Leh Highway open usually?
This 434 KM long Srinagar Leh Highway was closed in December last year and usually opens up by the first week of April looking at only last couple of years. I do feel that this year it may open my late-April or first week of May. It has been a norm that we set up the targets to open the highway early only to realize that weather has the last laugh.
I have been watching it for the last 10 years now and this year as well I don’t expect major changes. Eventually, it will all get down upon the weather and snow conditions in the months March / April when snow clearance operations are at peak in many parts of the Himalayas including this belt of Kashmir too.
Should I travel on Srinagar Leh immediately after road opening?
When making a road trip to Leh Ladakh over Srinagar Leh Highway, you must keep in mind that even when the road from Srinagar to Leh opens, it takes some time to get them stabilized. Due to snow sliding and loose gravel, the roadblocks are very common in the initial days, especially around Zojila Pass.
Even there is one way traffic with time restrictions of traffic flow in the initial days because the road is not wide enough due to snow walls and one way traffic is only allowed at Zojila Pass.
Hence, it is recommended that you wait for a couple of weeks before planning the trip on Srinagar Leh Highway after its official opening. The last thing you will want on your much awaited Leh Ladakh road trip is to get stranded on some lonely yet feezing stretches of Srinagar – Leh Highway in early April.
Please keep in mind that even when the Srinagar to Leh road to Ladakh gets open early in 2019, it needs at least couple of weeks to settle or get stabilized from initial snow sliding that happens due to quick melting of snow. So, please do not rush to Ladakh by road as soon as the highway is thrown open rather wait for a couple of weeks to let it stabilize 😉 … This will ensure safe passage for you and avoid any unforeseen mishaps.
Where can I track Leh Srinagar Road Status 2019?
As per the previous years, I will be starting this sticky post for Srinagar Leh Highway Status 2019 which so many adventure lovers await every year. Unlike the last few years, I will keep updating this article with the latest updates. Up until the last year, I used to update the progress in the DoW Community forums thread for better tracking of updates.
I understand that a forum topic always helps in better tracking as well as collation of info over time in an organized manner. However, forum management has become a pain due to lack of team. Hence, for all updates on Srinagar – Leh Highway Status 2019 will be posted or updated in this article only.
Will this thread have updated Srinagar Leh Road Status in 2019?
Once the Srinagar Leh road opens, I may not be that active in updating the minor road closures or status because of these roads in the high Himalayas which close and open on a frequent basis. It is barely impossible for a single tiny soul like me to update this information on a daily basis once the road gets open, so please request you to excuse me on that front and accept my apologies :)…
However, if there is some major blockade of 3 – 4 days, I will try to surely update such information about Srinagar Leh Highway status 2019.
I hope as per the last years, this year as well this article thread will be useful in planning your journey on Srinagar Leh Highway and further to Leh – Ladakh region.
Please note that if you are traveling from Manali to Leh over Rohtang Pass and coming back from Leh to Srinagar highway , you will need to get the permit for Rohtang Pass which can be applied online.
Current Srinagar Leh Highway Status = CLOSED | Update Date: 17 March 2019
The roads from Sonamarg to Zojila Pass is closed as of now. However, the roads from Srinagar to almost up to Sonamarg has been opened. Similarly, Kargil to Leh road is open and closes only during days of heavy snowfall in Ladakh region.
So, Srinagar Leh Highway is just closed between Sonamarg – Zojila Pass and Drass. Rest you can plan to make a day trip to Kargil covering Lamayuru and Sham Valley on the way to Kargil from Leh.
- Srinagar to Sonamarg is OPEN
- Kargil to Leh is OPEN
- Sonamarg to Zojila Pass to Kargil is CLOSED
Timings of Zojila Pass in April 2018
- Drass to Sonamarg (light vehicles): up to 1 PM (will update for 2019)
- Sonamarg to Drass (light vehicles): after 1 PM (will update for 2019)
Some Important Articles for Reference & Regular Updates
- 5 Reasons to choose Srinagar – Leh Road over Manali – Leh Road
- 7 Useful Tips for a Self Drive to Leh – Ladakh
- 40 Must-Have Things to Carry on Ladakh Self Drive Trip
- List of things to carry for your Ladakh Trip
- Acute Mountain Sickness and Importance of Acclimatization
Have a travel question?? You can follow me on Instagram and ask your travel questions in a direct message on Instagram too. I also conduct a weekly Q&A session every Saturday evening on Instagram, so see you there.
Srinagar – Leh Highway Status = CLOSED | Update Date: 17 March, 2019
Srinagar, 17th March 2019: The snow clearance operation on the strategic 434 km long Srinagar-Leh Highway, the only road linking the Ladakh with rest of Jammu and Kashmir is going on in full swing, the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) officials said on Saturday. The highway was closed in December this year following heavy snowfall.
The BRO officials said that there is heavy snow this year as compared to last year, adding that about 30 feet of snow has accumulated on the road along Zojila pass while as about 10ft snow has collected near Sonamarg.
Talking to Greater Kashmir, a BRO official said, that both men and machinery have been pressed into service, adding that the heavy snowfall this year is likely to delay opening of the Srinagar-Leh road.
“We are facing a tough situation due to heavy snowfall and frequent snow slides along the road from both Sonamarg and Drass side” the official said.
He said that it is expected that the snow clearance work will be completed by next month” he said.
“We are witnessing the huge snow from Sonamarg area and it is taking extra efforts and time” he said.
He said that the toughest work for snow clearance always spans 30-km road stretch up to zero point of Zojilla from Sonamarg. Around 30 ft of snow has accumulated along the stretch.
He said that the road runs through mountains with a deep gorge on one side. The men and machinery have to take extra precautions to avoid loss of life and property while working on the road.
“We haven’t set any timeline for the road opening as of now” he added.
Pertinently, the Project Beacon of the Border Road Organization is responsible for clearing the road up to zero point near Zojilla from Sonamarg, while the Vijayak of the BRO clears the road from the Drass side. Border Roads Organisation began snow clearance operation on Wednesday on the 12-km Gagangeer-Sonamrag stretch of Srinagar-Leh highway, the only road linking Ladakh with rest of Jammu and Kashmir. The road was closed in December last year after heavy snowfall.
BRO officials said if weather permits, the snow clearance work will be completed in the next few days.
“Several snow cutter machines, dozers have been pressed into work,” said captain Kushal Sharma of BRO.
He said this year snow was less compared to last year from Gagangeer side. Snow clearance will be tougher on the 30-km road stretch up to Zero Point of Zojilla from Sonamarg as more snow had accumulated along the stretch.
External Source: Snow clearance work in full swing on Sgr-Leh highway