Most of Kinnaur enjoys a temperate climate due to its high elevation, with long winters from October to May, and short summers from June to September. The lower parts of the Sutlej Valley and the Baspa Valley receive monsoon rains.
Kinnaur, is about 235 km (146 mi) from the state capital, Shimla,
located in the northeast corner of Himachal Pradesh bordering Tibet to the east. It has three high mountains ranges, namely, Zanskar, Himalayas and Dhuldhar that enclose valleys of Sutlej,Spiti ,Baspa and their tributaries. The slopes are covered with thick wood, orchards, fields and picturesque hamlets. At the peak of Kinnaur Kailash mountain is a famous natural rock Shivling. The district was opened to outsiders in 1889. The old Hindusthan-tibet road passes through the Kinnaur valley along the bank of river Sulej and finally enters Tibet at Ship kila pass.
It is not only the scenic beauty which appeals to the young and old alike but also the life styles of the people, their culture, heritage, customs and traditions. The people have strong culture and beliefs, generally follow Buddhism and Hinduism, believing the Pandavas came and resided in the land while in the exile<kamru village>. Thousands-year-old monasteries still exist in the area. Buddhists and Hindus live in harmony symbolising the traditional brotherhood and friendship of the people of both the faiths. Apples, chilgoza (chestnut) and other dry fruits are grown here. The high terrain here facilitates adventures and sports. Trekking routes include the ‘Parikarma of Kinnaur Kailash. Generally, Kinner houses have storerooms for keeping grain and dried fruits, and separate wooden grain-storage structures, calledkathar. Pakpa, a piece of sheepskin or yakskin, is often placed on the khayarcha mat.Traditionally Kinners use utensils made of brass and bronze. Modern influences have included the introduction of Chinese crockery, and utensils made of stainless steel and aluminium.Clothes are mainly of wool. The thepang, a grey woollen cap, is worn with a white velvet band. The Tibetan chhuba, a long woollen coat which resembles an achkan, is worn as well, with a sleeveless woollen jacket. While men wear woollen churidhar pajamas, and tailored woollen shirts such as the chamn kurti, the women wrap themselves up in a dohru. The first wrap of the dohru is based on the back, with embroidered borders displayed throughout its length, which stretches to the heels. Darker shades of colours are preferred for the Dohru, although other beautifully coloured shawls may be worn, usually draped over the shoulders. A choli, another type of full sleeved blouse worn by women, may serve as a decorative lining as well.The Kinners are classified mainly into two castes: lower and upper caste. Again both of these categories are divided into sub classes. The caste system is more prevalent in the Lower and Middle Kinnaur regions.
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