Wow! Look at Schladming

16th October 2009, by Chris Gill

Surely mid-winter, not mid-October?  [credit: Schladming resort - Planai]

Surely mid-winter, not mid-October? [credit: Schladming resort - Planai]

Check out the latest pictures from Schladming – yes, they really are skiing today -Saturday 17 October. Fantastic. What’s more, it’s still snowing!

The resort is one of several ski areas in Styria making the most of this week’s early snowfall. According to the lift company, the upper slopes have about 40cm of fresh snow from this week’s wintry weather. And, although it has warmed up a little since Wednesday’s dump, snow showers are still affecting the upper mountain on Saturday.

To kick off the season early, three slopes on Planai are available – and judging by the photos of kiddies out with their instructor, conditions are pretty good for the first turns of the season. Two years ago, Schladming was one of the first non-glacier resorts in the Alps to open for the season, firing up the lifts on 26 October.

One of the reasons that the resort is able to take advantage of an early cold snap is its substantial snowmaking system, which has been increased and updated for this winter. And they’ve had the guns in operation all week alongside the natural stuff!

With Schladming to host the Alpine World Cup in 2013, there has been a lot of recent investment: new lifts, for starters. This winter a swanky eight-pack is due to open in the Fairytale Meadow on Planai – replacing the top T-bar and giving better access to the mountain’s newish terrain park. The new chairlift will have heated seats and a capacity of 3,029 people per hour. Some of the runs that it serves are being widened and improved too. At valley level, a lot of building work has taken place to develop new parking and base station areas too.

Check out our snow updates here>>

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