Snowfall in Austria and the Eastern Alps Gets Ever More Epic - The Whiteroom
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Snowfall in Austria and the Eastern Alps Gets Ever More Epic

The huge snowstorm that has been sat over the Eastern Alps for several weeks now has brought ever more remarkable volumes of snowfall to the region, and there’s no real sign of it ending any time soon (although current forecasts are for the amount of snow falling to decrease).

(Image top: SkiStar St Johann in Tirol)

The snowfall initially brought as much at 2.1m (7 feet) snowfall tallies to some areas in 7 days but as the snow has continued falling total accumulations have now passed 3 metres (10 feet) for some resorts.

Infact Austria’s Tauplitzalm says it has had 3 metres (10 feet) of snow in the last week, Saalbach 2.7 metres (9 feet).

Upper slope base depths are now touching four metres at ski areas including Solden, which reported 70cm in the past few days and Loser which has had 90cm (3 feet) of new snow since Saturday.

The result is of course incredible powder conditions, but the volume of snow is also causing operational difficulties as municipalities struggle to keep road and rail access open, dig out lifts and make runs safe.  The off-piste avalanche danger has been at or near level 4 (one below the maximum danger level of 5) and several resorts including Obertauern, Filzmoos and Obergurgl have been all but cut off overnight with access roads closed as a precautionary measure due to the avalanche danger.

The entire ski village of Hochkar was evacuated on Monday amid fears of avalanches, something that has never happened there before.

Some ski areas including the Dachstein, Hintertux, Kaunertal and Molltal glaciers have been temporarily closed by the extreme weather, others have had to limit the terrain open. 

The Molltal Glacier which is open for snowsports 10.5 months a year has reported 75cm in the past 24 hours.

The snowfall has not just been limited to Austria – ski areas in southern Germany, Eastern Switzerland, Poland and the Czech and Slovak Republic have posted some huge accumulations too.

For the past two weeks however there has been a strict divide with almost no snowfall in the Western Alps on France or Western Italy, whilst it has been dumping on the Eastern side of the dividing line.  

Zell am See pictured below

  1. John Matthews

    9th January 2019 11:43 am

    Sounds ace. Have booked my flights!

  2. Brian Kristensen

    9th January 2019 8:22 pm

    In fact, many areas in Styria are now at avalanche warning level 5 which is the highest and has not been reached in the last 10 years.

  3. Monika reuss

    10th January 2019 1:45 am

    I have seen a lot of snow but this is more than I have seen in 30 years in the Alps. It snowed in am Arlberg and it felt epic but this is unbelievable!

  4. Viv Goede

    10th January 2019 6:41 am

    Hasn’t fallen in the Dolomites which had about 3-5cm yesterday!


    10th January 2019 8:54 pm

    I think that the article above meant to say “Eastern” Switzerland and not “Western” (for huge accumulations of snow). Here, at the western end of the Alps, we are still awaiting our first major ‘dump’ of snow for 2019! Austria, if you could spare us some snow, please send some over! ;-))

    • snowfore

      10th January 2019 9:48 pm

      Thanks, Martin – you are right.

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