The Alps may still be waiting for deep winter to arrive, but fear not: snowfall and a temperature drop are due on Christmas and Boxing Day.
Most well-known Austrian resorts are currently open, and despite poor weather there are still good riding conditions, particularly at the higher resorts and on glaciers. Sölden has plenty of options at high altitude, and although the resort runs are closed there were 24 lifts operating on Thursday. Fresh snow was forecast for this weekend, with some resorts expecting up to 8cm.
In France, the best conditions, again, are at altitude, with glacier resorts seeing the most snowfall. Tignes saw 20cm on the Grande Motte glacier and over the links across to Val d'Isère. Val Thorens has also reported 20cm of fresh snow. In lower resorts, such as those in Portes du Soleil, rain has been a big setback, with much recent snowfall already disappearing at resort level.
The greatest amount of snow in Switzerland fell at resorts such as Gstaad, Wengen and Crans-Montana. Zermatt and Saas-Fee saw some of the best conditions. New snow should improve piste conditions this weekend, but resort runs may become icy.
Best snow sports holidays
Best snow sports holidays
1/7 Québec City, Canada
With Old World charm by the bucket load and an average snowfall of 400cm per year, Québec City is a magical place for snow sports fans to get their winter kicks. Whether you try your hand at Ice Climbing at Montmorency Falls or visit one of the two world-class ski resorts, Mont-Sainte-Anne and Stoneham Mountain, you’ll be spoilt for choice in Québec City. Don’t forget to catch a game of ice hockey whilst you’re there.
2/7 Gstaad, Switzerland
A true winter wonderland, Switzerland is synonymous with all things snow related – and nowhere does it better than the ski town of Gstaad. One of the largest and most diverse winter sports regions in the country, Gstaad offers 220km of pistes at 3000m above sea level – and the slopes are even floodlit by night time, giving skiers and snowboarders the chance to experience a truly magical ride.
3/7 Gulmarg, India
When thinking of the world’s top snow destinations, India might not be the first place that springs to mind – or indeed, the second or third. However, you’d be missing a trick if you left it off your list, because Gulmarg is certainly a gem that deserves to stay polished. Sitting high in the Himalayas in the north of India, Gulmarg is a small hill station that is India’s leading ski resort. What’s more, it also boasts the second highest cable car in the world, offering truly spectacular views over the world below.
4/7 Nuuk, Greenland
If you’re looking for a snow holiday that’s a little off piste from the regular favourites, Greenland’s Nuuk could be just the place for you. With all the snow and slopes you could ever dream of, conditions are great for both cross-country and alpine skiing. What’s more, there’s a whole plethora of other activities available from dog sledding to climbing and mountaineering that will leave you wondering why you’ve never considered Greenland before.
5/7 Corralco, Chile
Just 50km from the exciting city of Temuco, Chile’s Corralco is a small but perfectly formed snow resort with tracks catering to everyone from beginners to experts. Situated in the middle of the Malalcahuelco Natural Reserve and on the Lonquimay Volcano, Carralco provides a breathtaking backdrop to your snow holiday.
6/7 Rusutsu, Japan
Considered one of the best ski resorts in Japan, Rusutsu is heaven for fans of off piste skiing. The ski area covers three mountains, offering a great mix of options for all levels and abilities. With excellent snowboarding and natural thermal springs to warm up at the end of a long day, Rusutsu is certainly the place to head for your fix of snow sports in Japan.
7/7 Trysil, Norway
The largest ski resort in Norway, Trysil is a hugely popular choice with families and offers a great ski school for beginners to find their feet before hitting the slopes. But fear not, because with over 40 lifts and 70km of runs, you can be sure that there’s something there to please every ability! If you fancy improving your winter sport skills in the heart of Scandinavia then Trysil is the place to head.
There is still a lot of good skiing available in Italy, despite recent weather. The Presena Glacier has an excellent base depth, and on Thursday there were 20 lifts in operation. Cesena, Courmayeur, Claviere and Macugnaga are closed until snow conditions improve.
In Andorra and the Spanish resorts of Formigal and Baqueira-Beret, light rain means some heavy piste conditions are likely, particularly at lower altitudes. and in Bulgaria, good skiing under sunny skies is on offer in Bankso. Pamporovo is also open for limited skiing, while Borovets was due to be open this weekend.
Three Scottish ski areas are open for skiing – Cairngorm, The Lecht, and Glenshee. Glencoe and the Nevis Range were also due to open this weekend.
For the very latest snow conditions visit skiclub.co.uk, or follow the Ski Club on Twitter: @TheSkiClub
The Ski Club of Great Britain (020 8410 2015; skiclub.co.uk) is a not-for-profit snowsports club which offers benefits to over 30,000 members. Members receive discounts on travel, kit and holidays; access to industry-leading snow reports; information and advice; and access to the in-resort Ski Club Leader service. Individual membership costs £63 or £24 for beginners and members aged under 24.Reuse content