Europe Weekly Roundup #241

(Updated 15 May 2024) A comprehensive review of snow conditions, weather, and updates for Europe's winter sports destinations.

Europe Weekly Roundup #241
Kanin, Slovenia: 9 May 2024.

Top of Your Arctic Adventure To-Do List: Skiing Under the Midnight Sun at Riksgransen

  • Europe sees a decline in open ski areas, but Norway’s Galdhopiggen glacier ski area joins the scene for the 2024 season, offering spring, summer, and autumn skiing.
  • The Alps maintain seven glacier ski areas, with Austria hosting five, while late spring weather brings sunshine and showers, and freeze-thaw conditions prevail.
  • Norway's Galdhoppigen glacier starts its six-month ski season, while Riksgransen in Sweden offers skiing under the midnight sun, with clear skies and ideal conditions for enthusiasts.


The 2024 ski season has gotten underway in the southern hemisphere with Argentina’s leading ski area at Bariloche opening more than a month early thanks to big pre-season snowfalls. More South American resorts, this time over the border in Chile, have announced they’ll start their seasons early too, later this week. There are, for now, still more areas open in the Northern Hemisphere, although half a dozen more ended their long 23-24 seasons at the weekend. The US still has the most open anywhere, still in double figures for its number of resorts open, whilst Austria leads in Europe, having more than half of the continent’s nine still-open areas on its territory. The big snowfalls of April are now behind us there, but it’s stayed cold up on glaciers and lighter snow showers have continued. We also have a new resort opening in Europe with the first of Norway’s three summer glacier centres starting its 2024 season.

World snow forecast overview for the next 6-9 days.


Molltal, Austria: 9 May 2024.


Europe has dropped into single figures for the number of ski areas still open, despite being joined by a new option for 2024, Norway’s Galdhopiggen glacier ski area, which opened for its season through spring, summer and autumn just as other centres ended their 23-24 seasons. Conditions have been fairly average for the time of year, with temperatures in the expected range for mid-May, snow showers, lighter than they were earlier this month and in April, continuing up high in the Alps. More than half of all centres open in Europe are in Austria but we’ve also reached that low point in the ski year where there are now more indoor snow centres open than outdoor ones, with England, Germany and the Netherlands having as many or more indoor centres as Austria has outdoor, albeit with much less terrain and not the views offered on Austrian glaciers! Although the last centre still open in Eastern Europe closed at the end of the month, the Sella Nevea/Kanin area on the Italian/Slovenian border which often stays open well into May or even June but has been closed for several seasons due to financial issues, reports it has 2.5m of snow still lying. It’s currently open for a private company to film a TV commercial there.

Europe snow forecast for the next 6-9 days.


There’s no change in the seven glacier ski areas open in the Alps, five of them in Austria, along with Les 2 Alpes in France and the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise (0/150cm / 0/60”) ski area above Zermatt and Cervinia on the Swiss Italian border. As of next Monday though that number will drop to five with the final weekend of their 24-25 seasons coming up at the Kaunertal (350/360cm / 140/144”) and Stubai (350/580cm / 140/232“) glaciers, despite the exceptional snow depths currently being reported. The other three Austrian glaciers still open are Hintertux (0/470cm / 0/188”), Molltal and Kitzsteinhorn. As to the weather, it’s been fairly normal, late springlike conditions with a mixed bag of sunshine and showers. Down in the valleys, where it has fallen as rain, we’ve had daytime highs reach +25C below 1000m altitudes, but thankfully freezing point has been between about 25000 and 3500m, with temperatures on glaciers in the -5 to +3C range through the 24-hour cycle, meaning freeze-thaw conditions. 5-10cm (2-34”) snowfalls above 2,500m have also been reported.

Stubai, Austria: 14 May 2024.


Dry conditions midweek but more changeable weather heading towards the weekend with a return of rain/snow showers. With temperatures above 3,000m in the -1 to -5C range this should mean more snowfall up high.


Perhaps the biggest news of the last week in Scandinavia was Norway’s Galdhoppigen glacier beginning its six-month ski season through to November 6th, at the weekend. It is not reporting a particular deep season starting base, but it has had a great opening weekend with clear skies and few skiers about, giving great conditions for those that were. It's open 9 am to 3 pm daily. The one Norwegian ski area that had still been open for its 23-24 winter season, Narvik, closed at the weekend, so we remain with one Norwegian centre, alongside Riksgransen over the border (just) up in the Swedish Arctic. It’s now getting 24-hour daylight at its northerly latitude and offering skiing under the midnight sun. Norway’s second glacier area, Folgefonn, opens later this month to the public (it’s already open to race teams). The third, Stryn, opens June 1st. They had hoped to offer a cat skiing operation at the weekend but cancelled as a combination of rain to high levels but temperatures down to -9 degrees created potentially dangerous conditions, they decided. The event has been rescheduled for this coming weekend May 17.

Galdhopiggen, Norway: 10 May 2024.


Most parts of Scandinavia will have a predominantly sunny week with temperatures ranging from -2 to +10C range. However more mixed conditions up in the Arctic Circle with rain, sleet and snow showers most days, temperatures between -4 and +8C, and clearer skies at the weekend.

Scandinavia snow forecast for the next 6-9 days.