Grandala @ Dhritiman Mukherjee
Great Himalayan National ParkShamshi, Kullu, Himachal Pradesh 175123
The Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP), situated in Himachal’s Kullu region, is India’s newest park. It is an overlap of four ecological zones – the Oriental and Palearctic belt, the dry deserts of interior Asia and lush lowlands of the Indian plains, the high plateau of Tibet and Western Himalayan peaks and the catchment areas of the Beas and Sutlej rivers. Because of its complex geography and great altitudinal variation (5000 to 20000 ft) in such a small area, the park exhibits great biological diversity, from subtropical to the alpine with characteristics of Siberian to Southeast Asian species.
The park lies adjacent to the Rupi Bhaba Sanctuary, Pin Valley National Park and Kanawar Wildlife Sanctuary. Together, these areas constitute one of the largest tracts of relatively undisturbed Western Himalayan ecosystems in India. Its remote location has spared the park many of the problems that have affected natural ecosystems elsewhere in India.
The terrain, characterized by high ridges, deep gorges, precipitous cliffs, rocky crags, glaciers and narrow valleys, supports diverse Himalayan wildlife. Apart from species like Tahr, Serow, Bharal (Blue Sheep), Goral, the much sought-after Musk Deer and the Snow Leopard, the park is also renowned for its rich community of pheasants. The endangered Western Tragopan, the Himalayan Monal and the Cheer Pheasant, all nest here. The best months to visit are September to November (when the rainy season is just over) and April to June.
- State : Himachal Pradesh
- Area : 1171 sq. km (Combining Core and buffer forest)
- Altitude : 1300 to 5805 m above mean sea level
- Vegetation : Coniferous, Temperate and Alpine Meadows
- Water resources : Jiwa, Sanj and Tirthan river and numerous snowfed streams
- Winter : November to March
- Summer : June to August
- Monsoon : August to September
- Rainfall : 1500 mm
- Temperature : Min Sub 0 Â°C – Max 30 Â°C