Skiing in Waidring
Posted by John Barr 10th December 2010
Last year some friends visited us in the middle of December and we skied on the SkiWelt. A few lifts and a handful of runs were open, but the skiing was very limited and conditions poor. Fast forward 50 weeks and not only is the SkiWelt open, but most of the runs (other than a number that head down to the valley floor) and lifts are operating. The snow is a mix of the real and artificial stuff, and while grass is poking through the snow off piste, the runs themselves are in good shape. The area now has a great snow base to build on through the season.
Many of the restaurants seemed busier than the pistes, probably a result of weak early season legs, and the cold temperatures - it was minus 10 degrees Centigrade at the top of the Hartkaiserbahn Funicular railway above Ellmau at 2pm. Intermittent clouds enveloped the mountain tops, bringing a light snowfall, and bitter cold with it, but when the sun came out, it was wonderful! That I seldom had to share a lift showed how quiet it was – or perhaps I should change my deodorant.
As I drove to Waidring on Sunday the car temperature gauge read minus 12 degrees. Something my fingers concurred with as I pulled on my ski boots in the Steinplatte Gondola car park. Surprisingly, the temperature at the top was considerably warmer. Low enough to keep the snow in good shape, but without freezing my proverbials off.
The blue runs that cut through the centre of the ski area were busy with ski lessons and ski instructors doing pre-season drills, but most of the other slopes were quiet – and some were deserted. The far end of the Steinplatte links with the Winklmoos ski area in Germany, where a new route opened this year avoids a long flat path through woods. So I skied to Germany for my morning coffee, only to find that the coffee bar was not open this early in the season.
The views from the top at Waidring are spectacular in a way that can never be captured by the camera, snow capped peaks as far as the eye can see. Between peaks I could make out the Cheimsee – a large lake well into Germany. I wonder if you can see the Olympiaturm tower in Munich on a clear day?
About the author
John Barr: My first skiing experience was in Glenshee, which I enjoyed so much that I quit for 15 years - until friends dragged me to Meribel. Skiing on the continent was somewhat different to Scotland, and I’ve been catching up ever since. I moved to St Johann in Tirol in 2009 - with Kitzbühel, the SkiWelt, and several smaller resorts just a short drive away. I’m a computer technology analyst by day, which I can luckily do anywhere as long as I’m on-line
- The very last day of the season (probably) - 14th April 2013
- Easter snow in Austria - 27th March 2013
- Taking DIY a bit far - 15th March 2013
- A visit to the circus - 11th February 2013
- How hard is the Hahnenkamm race, really? - 26th January 2013
Find it quick
- Get news!
- Get prizes!
- Sign up here!