Winter Arrives Early
on November 20, 2008 by Administrator
Winter sports need snow. Skiers all over the globe have been cleaning their skis, ironing their socks, and polishing their snow goggles whilst waiting for a chance to get back on the slopes.
The credit crunch might have dampened a few spirits but Switzerland’s white pistes and the snowy half-pipes of south-eastern France are a world away from the financial jargon that has been splattered across British newspapers over the past few months.
The European ski season began early this year after a series of unseasonal blizzards ripped through the Alps, depositing over two metres of snow in some areas. Zermatt and Saas Fee in Switzerland, Hintertux and Obergurgl in Austria, and Tignes in France all opened at the beginning of November to take advantage of the frosty conditions.
Arctic winds blowing in from the north have been blamed for the premature snow but many media outlets have sent out warnings which state that wintry conditions rarely last longer than a few days in November and December.
Tourists hoping to catch a short break before the Christmas holidays should consider renting a chalet at a high altitude resort such as Chamonix-Mont-Blanc in France or at the permanently frozen glacier near Zell am See-Kaprun in Austria.
On the other side of the Atlantic, ski resorts in the Rocky Mountains, Michigan, and California opened their gates in time for the Thanksgiving holiday but a number of the low altitude resorts are still using cannons to generate snow for the slopes.
England might see a handful of snowflakes fall before the spring arrives but with so many winter sports opportunities available in mainland Europe, holding out for a rare British blizzard should be the last thing on your mind.