Well as the Alpine season nears it’s end in the lower regions, snow is still falling in many areas despite a slight rise in temperatures.
Although there have been some good snowfalls, the rise in temperature means that it does get a bit sticky a bit earlier. With temperatures set to hit 20C in some places this weekend, the situation can only deteriorate.
There’s been little snow in France with 5cm in La Plagne and 10cm in Chamonix. There may be some snow on the very highest slopes but increasingly the valley runs are closed.
Austria has had some good snowfall recently with Pitztal, Zugsoitzplatt and Solden getting falls of between 15 and 25cm. Most popular resorts are still open but with weather forecasts pointing to warmer temperatures this weekend there could be limited snowfall left. having said that, the Molltaler Glacier has the deepest snow in the country at around 3.1m with Kaprun-Kitsteinhorn having a snowbase of 2.1m
Although more than a dozen resorts in Italy have snow levels in excess of 2m, there has been now new snow in the last 7 days, with warming temperatures. Bormio, Livigno and Madesimo are still looking good though with the Presena Glacier having 5.5m coverage – possibly the deepest in Europe!
Switzerland still has 6 resorts with snow levels aver 2m, including Engelberg with 360cm. Several resorts received 30cm over the last week and the 20C temperature still allows for some good skiing on the upper slopes.
So the end of the european skiing season is just about at an end, after some of the best snow we’ve seen for a while.
France still has a few resorts open and several resorts inCanada are celebrating their longest skiing season having been open for 8 calendar months. More snow in Northern Europe has helped with some slopes still open.
So what now?
Well Austria is now concentrating on glacier skiing with up to 210cm of snow on the Pitztal glacier and over 130cm left on the Kitzsteinhorn above Kaprun.
Time to start thinking about next summer holidays and booking up next years skiing trips!
It’s also time (for some of us at least) to start thinking about getting properly into shape for the 2010/2011 season and getting into a serious training regime. Not only will it help with the skiing next year, but wouldn’t it be great to get that ‘beach-body’ into shape!
Austria has had a lot of fresh snow in the past week.
Martha Schultz of Mölltal glacier’s lift compay told Skiinfo the ski resort had 40cm (16 inches) of new snow last weekend so there were “very good conditions” on the slopes. “But please don’t ignore the current avalanche situation,” she added. On Sunday 30cm (a foot) of new snow in 24 hours had caused a powder alarm for the glacier, which currently has the greatest snow depth in Austria – three and a half metres (12 feet).
Willi Krüger of Pitztaler Gletscherbahnen told Skiinfo, “On the Pitztal Glacier the snow cover, which was already great, was topped by 30cm of fresh snow in 48 hours at the weekend. You can only call this ideal conditions”.
Sölden got 27 cm of new snow last week. They have a snow cover of 192cm (over six feet) on the glacier today. For this afternoon and for tomorrow more new snow is expected in Austria.
To the north, the heavy snow falls of last week lessened a bit in Germany last week. Still there was up to 53cm (nearly two feet) of new snow in seven days in Upper Bavaria. Ofterschwang in the Allgäu region had 33cm (13 inches) in a week. Yesterday snow started falling again in Germany and weather forecasts say there is more snow to come today and tomorrow.
By Sally Brookes
Courtesy of skiinfo.co.uk
There has been limited fresh snowfall in the Alps over the past five days, but that is expected to change in the next few days and the first few powder alarms for 20cm (8 inches) of new snow in the past 24 hours have been issued this morning by several Swiss resorts.
On Thursday last week heavy snowfalls of up to 60cm (two feet) were reported from Austria. Since then the high avalanche risk has been lowering again (though still considerable in some regions like Tirol or Steiermark) and today lucky skiers and boarders across the country are enjoying good skiing conditions with sunny slopes in many places.
Last Thursday brought 30 powder alarms to Austria. The biggest snowfalls took place in Carinthia where 60cm (two feet) was reported from smaller resorts like Flattnitz or Petzen. Bad Kleinkirchheim and Dachstein West also had 20-30cm in 24 hours.
The Mölltaler glacier has the most snow in the country at 3.5m (nearly 12 feet), with St. Anton am Arlberg second with 240cm (eight feet).
In Switzerland the most snow was reported from Eigenthal with 90cm (three feet) in seven days. Beatenberg also had 60cm (two feet). Bigger resorts like Laax, Saas Fee, Zermatt and Davos usually had 8-15cm (3-6 inches) during the week.
Today there’s a dozen Swiss resorts reporting snow depths of two metres or more, including Saas Fee, St Moritz and Laax. Engelberg is on top of the list with 255cm (8.5 feet).
In Germany many resorts have seen 20-35cm of new snow in seven days. The resorts in the uplands of the East, Southeast and the Centre were reporting bigger snowfalls than the German Alps. Grasgehren and Oberstdorf – Nebelhorn in the Allgäu both have 190cm (over six feet) of snow on their upper slopes though and the top snow depth is at the Zugspitzplatt with 205cm (6.5 feet).
By Pascal Bovee
Courtesy of skiinfo.co.uk