Wednesday was a memorable day up on the Hintertux glacier in Austria. As forecast, there were moderate snowfalls across the high Alps, especially in the Austrian Tirol, and at times the snow settled almost down to the valley floor.
Then the sun came out…
And anyone lucky enough to have a lift ticket and a pair of skis or a snowboard, got some of this…
Thank you, Werni Stock, for sharing those moments with us!
According to our snow forecast for the Alps there’s more snow to come today, too.
Of course, the Hintertux isn’t the only place that’s seen September snow. As often happens when a cold front marches down from the north Engelberg in Switzerland has had snow too. This was how it was looking half-way up the Titlis this morning.
It’s important to remember that it’s only mid-September and this is not the start of winter. As soon as the wind changes direction, the snowline is going to go scurrying back uphill. But as I said on Monday, some seasonal forecasters are predicting a colder-than-average autumn – and it wouldn’t be a monstrous surprise, given the cold spring and snowy start to summer we saw in the Alps. There are already signs there could be more snow next week.
I’m not saying you should book a November trip to the Alps just yet. There have been plenty of snowy Septembers which didn’t turn into early winters in the Alps. But all the same, the signs are encouraging. Keep an eye on our Snow Forecast for the Alps, and check out our guide to the best resorts for early season skiing – and be ready to pounce if the snowy trend continues.
And what of the southern hemisphere? Well this week, New Zealand has had the lion’s share of the weather. I’m not talking so much about snow – although there has been some of that. It’s the wind. Mount Hutt broke its windspeed record on Tuesday – clocking a gust of 156mph on its slopes – while stormy conditions ravaged the South Island, toppling trees and power cables and causing localised flooding.
The outlook for the weekend in the South Island is promising, too. More fresh snow is expected at the start of the weekend, following by sunshine. In the short term, temperatures are going to stay low, too, which means the snow on the shadier slopes should still be in good nick when everyone gets out of work.
|France: currently, all the French glaciers are closed for skiing. The Grande Motte glacier above Tignes reopens on October 12.
|Switzerland: You can still ski on the glacier above Zermatt. At last, Saas Fee’s glacier is open for late-summer skiing, too.
|Austria: you can currently ski on the Hintertux and the Molltal glaciers. The Kitzsteinhorn and Stubai glaciers expect to open at the end of the month.
|Italy: access to high-altitude skiing above Cervinia closed on September 8 for the autumn break.
|Andorra: Andorra’s ski resorts are currently closed.
|Western USA: all the mainstream ski resorts are closed, but you can still make turns at Timberline Lodge on Mount Hood in Oregon.
|Western Canada: Canada’s resorts are currently closed.