Austrian Ski Areas Open For 21-22 Season Despite No Tourists For Now
- by Admin
- Posted on December 4, 2021
Austria’s biggest ski areas including the ski areas around Saalbach, Ischgl and the Skiwelt have already opened or are opening shortly for the 21-22 season as the country enters that latter half of a 20-day lockdown. They’re among around 50 Austrian ski areas now open, many of them doing so this weekend.
Until December 12th the country’s lockdown means businesses including hotels and restaurants must close, but ski areas can stay open to cater for locals who want to get on the slopes.
With ski areas across the country reporting 30-60cm (1-2 feet) of fresh snowfall this week and great conditions for early December, lots of people do.
“Ischgl has opened its slopes with fabulous conditions on the 03 December for locals and is looking forward to opening to international skiers when the government deem it is safe. The lifts will be open for locals from tomorrow as this is a sport activity but nothing else will be open. A comprehensive package of safety and health measures has already been put together in advance for winter 21/22 in Ischgl, which together with the legal requirements ensures the greatest possible safety for all,” a resort spokesperson said.
Prior to the start of the lockdown Austria had the most areas open of any country in Europe, most of those open in Tirol, where Solden had the most terrain open of any ski area anywhere in mid-November, reaching over 70km.
Ischgl has opened with the most terrain open in the Alps and the second most in the world, 126km of runs.
Half-a-dozen Austrian resorts, including Kitzbuhel, kept operating through the first half of the new lockdown, now most of the country’s other leading areas have joined them.
The country’s government had its planned “lockdown review” on Wednesday and announced they would review on Thursday next week, December 9th, the potential reopening of hotels from Monday 13th December. However for now the president only said that they expected retail would be permitted to reopen then.
Last season Austria’s ski resorts were closed completely in November and December 2020 but were allowed to operate, as they are now, to locals only, from early-January for the rest of the season. Some opened limited terrain, others said they could not afford to.
The 20-day lockdown was introduced as cases soared in the country, they have now dropped by about a third from that peak and the trajectory is down. With Austria’s key market and neighbour Germany so far resisting a lockdown itself and instead focussing on limiting the movements of unvaccinated people, ski areas will be hoping they’ll be able to re-open to fully-vaccinated tourists before the key holiday periods. Of course, nothing in this pandemic is certain however. For now though at least the snow keeps falling.
(Images are Fieberbrunn this week)
Austria’s biggest ski areas including the ski areas around Saalbach, Ischgl and the Skiwelt have already opened or are opening shortly for the 21-22 season as the country enters that latter half of a 20-day lockdown. They’re among around 50 Austrian ski areas now open, many of them doing so this weekend. Until December 12th…