This week, let’s hear it for the snow-makers.
I’ve been reminded of the vital role they play in modern skiing by a lovely video from the resort of Perisher in New South Wales. Thanks to a lacklustre performance by Mother Nature this season, they’ve been busier than usual down there: and the film gives us a glimpse of their world.
Did you notice how high-tech the system has become? Amazing. But it’s not just in Perisher that work like this is vital. Almost every resort worth its lift pass has a dedicated snow-making and snow-managing team working hard behind the scenes: and the average season would be at least two months shorter if they didn’t.
So, like I said, let’s hear it for the snow-makers!
But please can NZ, Oz and the Andes have some natural snowfall?
All of the three main southern hemisphere ski regions could do with a top-up right now. The Andes have had the best of it recently – with snow falling on July 26 (last Friday) in Chile. But there’s been no new snow in the South Island of NZ or south-eastern Australia in the last seven days. According at the weather forecast, the outlook for the Andes is promising, with snow expected again this weekend. There should be snow in NZ, too, but it looks as though it will alternate with periods rain. Still, a glass or two of champagne will no doubt keep everyone smiling…
It’s a glorious day in the Alps
July was pretty stormy and changeable in the Alps, but the weather’s been more stable lately – and warm. Check out the Hintertux glacier this lunchtime.
And here’s how it was looking on the glacier above Les Deux Alpes last night.
If you’ve been following our recent snow reports you’ll know Les Deux Alpes has had a busy summer – hosting the Kumi Yama freestyle competition, the Mountain of Hell downhill race, and the Crankworx bike festival. Is it becoming the most exciting Alpine resort for summer activities? Perhaps…
Here’s some video of the Crankworx highlights.
The immediate forecast for the Alps is for a few clouds and showers at the weekend, but plenty of sunshine too – with wetter weather to follow next week.
|France: the Pisaillas glacier above Val d’Isere has now closed for skiing, but there are still turns to be had above Tignes and Les Deux Alpes. Summer is really starting to get hold of the snow now, thinning the cover, but according to Les Deux Alpes’ snow report, the white stuff on its glacier is still 220cm deep.
|Switzerland: You can still ski on the glacier above Zermatt, and links over to Cervinia are open too. At last, Saas Fee’s glacier is now open for summer skiing, too.
|Austria: you can currently ski on the Hintertux and the Molltal glaciers. The Kitzsteinhorn glacier closed to skiers on July 21 and expects to reopen in mid to late September.
|Italy: access to high-altitude skiing above Cervinia is now possible – mostly on the Swiss side of the border above Zermatt.
|Andorra: Andorra’s ski resorts are now closed for the summer.
|Western USA: all the mainstream ski resorts are now closed, but you can still make turns at Timberline Lodge on Mount Hood in Oregon.
|Western Canada: The glacier above Whistler has now closed for summer skiing.