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Les Arcs Commits to ‘Flocon Vert’ Sustainable Development Strategy

French ski resort of Les Arcs-Bourg Saint Maurice has announced that it will commit to the ‘Flocon Vert’ (or 'green snowflake') label, as the resort continues to grow its sustainable development strategy. The ‘Flocon Vert’ was created in 2011 by the ‘Mountain Riders’ association, which has been working for over 20 years to help support mountain resorts work towards more sustainable operations. The label is issued based on fulfilling 20 criteria divided into four themes: local economy, social and cultural, governance and destination, environment and natural resources. By joining the ‘Flocon Vert’ approach, Les Arcs - Bourg Saint Maurice is pledging to becoming more eco-responsible and make environmental issues a corner stone of its future development. Les Arcs – Bourg…

The Ski Map of the World

The biggest ever ski map, basically a ski map of the entire world, is now available online, and is looking for any skiers or boarders anywhere to help make it bigger and better still. OpenSnowMap is a community-created and maintained ski map of the world, displaying more than 150,000km of ski pistes on its website. Skiers and snowboarders can browse the map from Antarctica to Alaska, from California to Japan and look at the pistes available in each and every resort, from the smallest to the largest. The coverage goes from the incredibly dense network of nordic trails around Oslo (Norway), to the biggest Alpine resorts of the Alps, to tiny hills in small Slovenian villages. The project doesn’t ‘own’…

Australian Resort Destroyed By Bushfires Won’t Open This Winter

The Blyton Group which owns Selwyn Snow Resort in Australia’s New South Wales has announced that due to the extent of the damage sustained in the bushfires last month, the ski area will be unable to open for the 2020 snow season. However it will be rebuilt “even better”. An initial assessment of critical resort infrastructure has identified extensive damage to buildings, power, water, sewerage and snowmaking. Selwyn Snow Resort has been advised that restoration of power alone will take several months, due to the damage of several kilometres of power poles leading to the resort. Preparations for the clean-up of the site are underway with demolition of all buildings required, as well as the removal of destroyed resort machinery…

WWF Seek Global Support to Persuade UNESCO to add ‘Seasons’ to the World Heritage list

The Norwegian branch of the World Wildlife Fund, WWF, working with clothing company Bergans, have launched an initiative to ‘Save the Seasons’ in a bid to have them added, and thus preserved, as part of UNESCO’s World Heritage list. Pyramids, temples, Stonehenge, reefs and... seasons? Everything previously included on UNESCO’s World Heritage list is either a physical object, building or city, but WWF think that the changing seasons due to climate change threaten much of what is on the list, yet, aren’t considered in the preservation of these sites or as a heritage for future generations. “The seasons are the very foundation of life, which in turn is directly linked to our cultural heritage. The seasons must therefore be declared…

Truly unmissable on a family holiday in wintery Zillertal

The anticipation rises for many families as soon as the first glistening snowflakes begin to fall and the temperatures drop: The winter holiday together is near. For many it is a real dream to dive into an idyllic winter wonderland. Zillertal in Tyrol is proof that some dreams do come true. Snow and fun for young and old in Zillertal If the children are happy, so are their parents! This hardly secret recipe is known across Zillertal. And thus highly trained and motivated ski instructors take care of the little ones and look to growing their skills. After all, proper skiing takes practice! There are numerous ski schools that offer special children’s courses in every region of the valley, which…

Ski Area Sees Nearly 5 Feet (145cm) of Snowfall in 72 Hours

Mt Baker ski area in Washington State, located close to the Canadian border in Northwest USA has reported 145cm (58 inches) of snowfall in 72 hours. The resort has now moved to the top of the table of snowfall depths in North America, reporting a  224cm at its base and over ten feet of snow (310cm) lying at the top of the slopes. It’s the first resort in North America to report a 10 foot/3 metre base so far this ski season. Mt Baker is home to the world's greatest recorded snowfall in one season, 21 winters ago, when it recorded 1,140 inches (95 feet; 29 metres) during the 1998–99 season. The resort also enjoys the unofficial highest average annual…

Ischgl Declared ‘Climate Neutral’

The Austrian Tirol ski resort of Ischgl has been declared climate-neutral by the German company ClimatePartner, which is described as, “the leading solution provider for climate protection measures.” Ischgl’s lift operators, Silvrettaseilbahn AG, have both worked to reduce their company’s CO2 emissions and offset the remaining CO2 through ClimatePartner, with the company then declaring Ischgl, “the largest climate-neutral ski resort in the Alps.” “The message is Think Globally, Act Locally. And while everyone talks about climate change, Ischgl is doing something about it,” said Paznaun-Ischgl Tourist Director Andreas Steibl, adding, “Ischgl has implemented environmental measures to reduce CO2 emissions throughout its ski area.” From this season all ski lifts are powered almost entirely by renewable energy, mainly from hydropower stations.…

World’s Most Advanced High-Speed Train Begins Operating To Link Chinese 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Venues

China has unveiled the world’s most advanced high-speed train to connect capital city Beijing with its 2022 Winter-Olympic and Paralympics co-host city Zhangjiakou. The €7 billion 174km long railway line cuts travel time between the two cities from three hours to 47 minutes with driverless trains travelling at up to 350 kilometres (217 miles) per hour. Passengers on the service will also be able to enjoy 5G data signals and wireless charging on their short trip.  The trains also have special ski and snowboard storage facilities and during the Olympics will broadcast live TV links to events taking place for passengers. There are reported to be ‘AI controlled robots’ helping with tasks like baggage transportation at stations on the new…

Italian Ski Resort Goes “Plastic Free”

An Italian ski area has declared that it is Europe's first plastic-free ski resort. Pejo 3000 in Italy’s Trentino region is aiming to become “the most sustainable ski area in the Alps” according to the director of the local tourist board. The resort, which is already powered by green electricity from local hydro electric power plants, has grabbed global media attention by announcing it is the first to go “plastic free.” What this means is practical terms is that the use of plastic bottles, bags, cutlery, plates, straws, cups and condiment sachets are banned at Pejo.  Plastic covers from one day lift tickets will also be removed from January onwards. The decision to go plastic free followed the publication of…

Get Avalanche Aware (in Val d’Isère)

Henry’s Avalanche Talk (HAT) have launched a new season of on snow training courses, complete with avalanche safety modules for off-piste riders running, running over one or three days. For recreational skiers or instructors looking to improve their skills and train for their mountain safety examinations, the courses, based in Val d’Isère, provide training in terrain management, risk reduction methods and rescue techniques if the worst-case scenario happens. Courses take place between Tuesday and Thursday throughout the winter season and are led by HAT founder Henry Schniewind, otherwise known as ‘Mr Avalanche’ who has been operating for more than 30 years.  “Our big focus is on applying the knowledge we have learned because evidence suggests that complacency is one of…