Snow report: Europe’s slopes hit peak condition for half-term

Jump for joy: Switzerland has plenty of snow

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The Independent Travel

Sunny skies have been firmly in place this week across the Alps, providing excellent overhead conditions. Temperatures have climbed above zero Centigrade since Wednesday, with the freezing level hitting around 2,500m.

Austrian pistes remain in good condition. Most of the off piste is now tracked out but some powdery conditions are still being reported. All pistes in Obergurgl are in an excellent state.

The weather remains wintry in France. Some of the best conditions are in the Espace Killy, with both Tignes and Val d’Isère offering great snow. The runs from the Grand Motte glacier are in excellent shape, as are those high above Le Fornet and towards Pissalis glacier. However, spring-like conditions are prevalent in lower altitude resorts, such as those in the Portes du Soleil. Snow clouds are expected to move in from the west during Friday, dropping fresh snow. The heaviest is expected in the south, with up to 50cm forecast. Snow is also predicted in the French Pyrenees.

The sun has not stopped shining this week for much of the Swiss Alps. The slopes are in great condition and the snowpack has begun to consolidate, leading to a slight drop in the avalanche risk. Snow is expected to fall again in Swiss resorts this weekend. This is great news for half-term holidays, but pay close attention to the latest avalanche warnings – the risk is set to increase.

The conditions in Italy are still very good. The temperature has increased to around the freezing mark, so some resort runs will be a little soft in the high afternoon. The clouds will bring plenty of fresh snow for half term.

Temperatures in Andorra remain low, preserving the pistes in an excellent state. Cloudier skies are set to remain over the weekend, bringing light snow to the Pyrenees. More snow is expected for the start of half term.

Conditions are fantastic at present in Bulgaria. Loads of new snow has fallen and temperatures have remained well below freezing. The forecast is for the cold weather to continue into half term week.

All five of Scotland’s ski areas are offering excellent conditions and almost all lifts have been spinning this week. Periods of snow are forecast over the weekend, adding another welcome top-up.

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