Last week the weather took a more autumnal turn in the Alps. There was a sprinkling of snow across some of the higher resorts last Thursday, and there was more snow at altitude over the weekend. In parts of the Tirol in Austria, it was still falling this morning.
Here’s how it looked in the village of Le Fornet, above Val d’Isere yesterday.
And this was the view towards Val Claret and the Grande Motte in Tignes on the same day.
Meanwhile, in the Tirol, the snow came on Saturday. On the Hintertux Glacier, where this shot was taken, it bumped up the settled snow depth by 10cm.
It was snowing in the Italian Dolomites on Saturday, too.
There’s still a little snow falling in Austria as I write. This was how the top lift station above the Pitztal Glacier looked earlier today.
The Pitztal opened for the autumn skiing season at the weekend, and will be grateful for the new snow after such a warm end to the summer.
Is this the start of a decisive shift in the weather? Well, the rest of the week is going to be cool-ish, thanks to light northerly breezes. The eastern Alps will be slightly cooler than the west, with the daytime freezing point hovering between the 2600 and 2800m mark. In the French Alps it’ll be around 3000m. A warm and sunny spell is then expected over the weekend – but I see that some mid-range forecasts are suggesting a cold snap at the end of the month. It’s much too soon to be sure of that; but that won’t stop us hoping, of course.
There’s been some fresh snow in the Rockies, too…
This was the high-altitude resort of Arapahoe Basin, Colorado, on Thursday last week.
And this was Loveland on the same day.
Both resorts like to get going early and A-Basin already has its snow cannons ready. The idea is to start making snow as soon as the temperature drops below -2C for a few hours, but realistically there’s not much chance of a concerted snow-making effort before early October.
And in the southern hemisphere?
Winter made a bit of a comeback in the Snowy Mountains of Australia last week.
This was Thredbo on Thursday.
And this was Perisher on Friday.
There could be more snow across the upper slopes in both resorts on Wednesday and Thursday, too, although it’s likely to be quite wet and heavy.
In New Zealand and the Andes, it’s been drier, and spring has a much firmer grip on conditions. In NZ, The Remarkables closes for the season on Sunday, followed by Coronet Peak and Treble Cone the following weekend.
|France: The summer ski season in the French Alps is now over. All eyes are now on Tignes, whose glacier should re-open again in October.|
|Switzerland: despite the very warm end to the summer, Zermatt is reporting that there’s plenty of snow on the glacier – up to 150cm, in fact. You can also ski on the glacier above Saas-Fee.|
|Austria: late-summer skiing is currently on offer on the Hintertux, Pitztal and Molltaler glaciers. On the Hintertux, the snow depth is up 10cm, in the wake of the recent snow, and stands 45cm, on-piste…|
|Italy: Cervinia has finished its summer season.|
|Andorra: no skiing is currently on offer in Andorra.|
|Western USA: snow-conditions permitting, September ski weekends are currently on offer at Timberline Lodge in Oregon. But with the snow cannons now in position in A-Basin, Colorado, thoughts are turning to the start of the “winter” season in the high-altitude resorts. Hopefully, within the next month at least a couple will be up and running.|
|Western Canada: the Horstman glacier on Blackcomb Mountain in Whistler is now closed.|