Tux im Zillertal has two separate ski areas – the Hintertux glacier, and network of pistes and lifts shared with Mayrhofen. To get between them, you’ll need to drive – or ride one of the local buses (free if you’re wearing ski clothing and carrying skis).
Lots of skiing on the glacier – provided you’re after groomed pistes
Hintertux offers the steepest glacier skiing in the Alps – which in winter is supplemented by a considerable network of pistes over unglaciated terrain, lower down. As we said on the home page, it’s a great place to sharpen your technique, pre-season; and the high altitude (up to 3250m) means you can escape all but the sharpest thaws during winter, too.
The pistes right at the top are the best – wide, grippy and almost always quieter than the runs lower down. On a windless sunny day, they’re a lovely place to set your edges to groomed snow, provided you like your slopes fairly steep. Lower down, many of the runs are more meandering – and more crowded too. They add up to 86km of piste – more than enough for most skiers for a couple of days.
But you must bear in mind that all the skiing is above the treeline, so you won’t be able to see anything on a cloudy day. It can be windy too – and bitterly cold – so whenever the weather sets in, it’s best to day-trip down the Zillertal and explore one of the other, lower, ski areas instead (the lower slopes of Hochfugen are some of the most sheltered). Anyone looking for a bit of variety – tree skiing, bumps, powder – will get bored here too, although there is a terrain park on the glacier.
Lower down, there’s more skiing variety
Lower down the valley, the slopes of the Eggalm, Rastkogel and Penken offer more mileage – and more skiing variety.
Generally, pistes are a little shorter here than you’ll find in the French Alps, and a little steeper too. It’s here that you’ll find Harikiri, which is officially the steepest piste in the Austrian Alps. There are gentler blues about as well, but generally we think this area suits confident, athletic intermediates best: not least because it’s fairly low by modern standards (topping out at 2590m), and gets a lot of sun too – so you’ll have to cope with variable snow conditions from time to time. If you get freaked out by ice or slush, you’ll be happier elsewhere.
We’ve had some cracking days skiing off-piste here too – both on hike-to slopes on the Eggalm, and on lift-serviced terrain in the Penken: but you absolutely must have a guide if you want to get the best of it. Several of the mountainsides are very avalanche-prone.
Bear in mind also that there’s a very good terrain park in this sector – the Vans Penken park – with an active freestyle scene, and excellent nursery slopes too – but you’re better off staying in Mayrhofen to access them.
Finally – never forget that there’s a lot more skiing in other ski areas along the Zillertal. So although you can have a week of good skiing by staying in the Tux im Zillertal area, you can have an even better one by day-tripping along the valley. In fact, there’s a whopping 668km of skiing on offer along its length – more than in the Three Valleys in France, and offering far greater variety. To get the best of it, ski it in January or February, and bring a car.