Exploring Sarfaranga Cold Desert through Shigar Jeep Rally

A three-day Sarfaranga Cold Desert jeep rally in Shigar has finally concluded. Sarfaranga Cold desert is one of the distinct features of Gilgit Baltistan. It is also known as the Katpana cold desert. The desert is a wonder in itself. Unlike the traditional hot deserts of Thar or the Sahara, this desert is known as the cold desert. This is because this desert is surrounded by mountains from all sides. Moreover, being at an altitude of 2226 meters (2.2 Km) above the ground, the weather of this desert remains cold. The cold desert is 16 Kms away from Skardu but the closest town located to it is known as Shigar. 

This desert is a marvelous one and unlike any other desert in the whole world. This desert has cold weather, water nearby, mountains, and an altitude. All the features defy its possibility of being a desert. But however, the white sand of the place names it quite a wonder. The cold weather of this place may have anyone stay at their home or think twice before visiting the place. However, this is not the case for Jeep Rally lovers. Every year, Sarfaranga Cold Desert Jeep Rally Shigar is organized in this desert. Jeep lovers and competitive desert racers from all over the country come to either take part in it or enjoy the high-speeding jeeps.

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This year it was a 75-kilometer-long track race. In the final round of the race around 50 competitors including 5 women participated in race. Chief Minister of Gilgit Baltistan Khalid Khurshid inaugurated the final round of the desert rally. Cabinet members including Raja Azam Khan, Raja Nazir Ali, and Wazir Saleem accompanied the chief minister to inaugurate the final round.

After the race chief minister presented the winners with honorary medals. Shoaib Malik won the jeep rally in the 75 Km race finishing the whole track in just 48 minutes and 27 seconds. Sahibzada Muneeb Sultan secured the second position in the race whereas Raza Saeed secured 3rd position.

A large number of supporters and tourists were also present to enjoy the race. Authorities concluded the event with a cultural musical show.

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