The Australian state of Victoria announced it was changing the terms of its latest (sixth) seven-day lockdown so that as of midnight Monday 9th, many parts of the state could re-open, three days earlier than expected, whilst the capital Melbourne remains in lockdown.

“In happy news from the Premier’s update …Mt Buller will resume normal lifting operations as of Tuesday with 14 lifts expected to turn and a metre of excellent snow cover waiting for skiers and boarders,” said the resort’s PR & Communications manager Rhylla Morgan.

Mt Hotham and Falls Creek are also re-opening from Tuesday, Mt Baw Baw will run its lifts from Wednesday.

The previous requirement for a negative COVID test for all visitors aged over 12 years has been adjusted to a ‘strong recommendation’ and businesses are reported to be delighted to get their doors open and welcome visitors into the resort once more. 

“We feel for our friends in Melbourne doing the hard yards in lockdown but can reassure everyone our team will work hard to keep the ski area humming along safely and we hope to see all of Victoria back for a slide as soon as possible,” explained General Manager Laurie Blampied.

“This is peak snow season, we have a metre of snow on the mountain, skiing is top to bottom and the conditions are excellent – we are incredibly grateful to at least welcome regional Victorians to enjoy these conditions for the time being” Blampied added.

“Forward bookings have been strong in resort but the lockdown will force many guests to cancel their snow travel plans.  It’s a silver lining for those in regional Victoria hoping to get to the snow, as there will be some availability opening up and the snow conditions couldn’t be better right now.”

The position for ski areas in Victoria is now similar to what it was at the start of the season in June ibn the state’s 4th lockdown and the current situation over in New South Wales where Sydney remains in lockdown but the state’s ski areas are open.

Australian ski areas have been reporting some of their best conditions for this point in the season for more than 20 years thanks to weeks of snowfall.

Photo top credit: Tony Harrington| Mt Buller