After remaining closed for five months, Srinagar Leh highway was finally declared open for vehicular traffic on May 13th. The snow clearing operations started a little late this year due to unexpected snowfalls in the region and were completed by second week of May. BRO carried out trial runs and road was declared fit for travel. Last year, the highway had opened on May 17th. The first convoy of vehicles was flagged off at Zojila by Lt Gen Subrata Saha, General Officer Commanding of the Srinagar-based 15 Corps. Due to late snowfall, the highway had remained open for an extended period this year. It was declared closed on Jan 12th.
This marks the beginning of travel season to Leh which so many people have been eagerly waiting on. With that being said, I would still recommend people to wait and give it a couple of weeks before they plan to travel on this road. BRO is still busy clearing snow in several parts near Sonmarg and Drass and there is a very high chance that they may decide to close the highway for a few hours or a couple of days. Road is currently open for LMVs and heavy vehicles are not yet allowed to ply so there is currently no bus service available. However if your plan is to travel on a winding road cutting through 8 to 10 ft of snow, and you do not mind getting stranded for a few hours or a day then this would be the perfect time to travel. Keep in mind though that you should hire a local taxi driver for now and not drive in your own vehicle as the roads can be tricky at several points considering all the melting snow and slush.