Fresh snow in Salzburgerland

12th March 2010, by Editor Watts

Mixed weather in Bag

Mixed weather in Bag

Editors Watts and Gill are in the Salzburgerland region of Austria, touring four of the ares covered by the extensive Ski Amade lift pass. They report:

We flew in on Thursday from Stansted to Salzburg on an early morning flight. By shortly after noon, after a 45 minute drive from Salzburg airport, we were on the slopes of the Salzburger Sportwelt region, which is hardly known on the UK market. It deserves better. The St Johann im Pongau to Wagrain area that we skied has a high-tech lift system of fast chairs and gondolas, some pretty wooded scenery and some good long red runs (as well as some very short runs and lifts near the top which get you from one valley to the next). It snowed gently all afternoon, so the pistes had patches of fresh snow but with underlying hardpack and ice.

Friday morning dawned to fresh snow right outside our hotel in Bad Hofgastein and the snow continued till after lunch. In the morning we skied Bad Hofgastein’s local slopes, including a lovely top-to-bottom run of almost 1500m vertical that winds its varied way away from all signs of lifts and civilisation except for the welcome pit-stop part way down of the rustic Aeroplanstadl hut (shame it’s self-service though). The epistles were covered in ample amounts of fresh snow - but again the underlying surface was hard and icy.

In the afternoon we skied the Bad Gastein slopes and had a great time as the clouds cleared and sunny intervals broke out. On the far skier’s left side of the ski area here, back down towards Angertal and the link with Bad Hofgastein, there was a vast amount of gentle and safe off-piste that was so delightfully powdery and deserted that we had to ski it three times. By contrast the pistes again, though nice, had an underlying base of hardpack and ice. So the new snow has been very welcome.

Tomorrow we are skiing the two less well-known parts of the Gastein valley - Dorfgastein and Sportgastein. More on those soon.




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