Today in the Alps...

Updated: 9.15am Monday 24 November 2014 - Mostly dry, variable cloud

 

It’s another dry day in store for the Alps with variable cloud and very mild afternoon temperatures. As  of tomorrow the weather will start to turn a little more unsettled in the south-west, but the widespread snowfall once forecast for the end of the week is off the agenda - for now.

Mölltal glacier, Austria Another dry day with variable cloud cover. This is the Mölltal glacier in Austria – Photo: foto-webcam.eu

Today (Monday) it will remain dry with some bright or sunny spells, but also large areas of cloud drifting around. It will be very mild though with freezing levels close to or even above 3000m. Tomorrow, one or two showers will arrive in the southern French and western Italian Alps (with a dusting of snow above 2000m) heralding a more unsettled week for the south-western Alps in general.

 

For more on snow conditions across the Alps see our detailed snow report later today... 

Who got the most snow in 2013-14? - click here

 

Who got the most snow in 2013-14 in N. America? - click here

Updated: 9.20am Sunday 23 November 2014 - Mostly dry, variable cloud

 

After yesterday’s sunshine it’s a cloudier picture for much of the western Alps, though still largely dry and relatively mild. The best of the sunshine today will be in the east.

Kronplatz, Italy Sunny skies (at altitude at least) in the eastern Alps today. This is Kronplatz - Photo: foto-webcam.eu

At least 30 resorts are open for skiing across the Alps this weekend including Val Thorens in France, the biggest of the new openings yesterday (Saturday). The most extensive slopes, however, remain in Zermatt and Cervinia where nearly 100km of pistes are available with a vertical drop of some 1700m (all the way down to resort) on the Italian side. 

Looking ahead and it will gradually turn more unsettled from the west over the next few days, but the widespread snow once forecast towards the end of the week is now looking less likely. Stay tuned...

Updated: 12.50pm Saturday 22 November 2014 - More openings, glorious weather

 

It’s another glorious day across much of the Alps although there are a few areas of cloud drifting around here and there. There are several new resort openings too, the biggest name of which is Val Thorens.

Val Thorens, France Looking pretty good on opening day in Val Thorens - Photo: valthorens.com

There isn’t a huge amount of snow in the French Tarentaise but plenty enough at altitude for a decent ski, and in Tignes they have (with artificial help) now opened the famous Double M run all the way down to Val Claret.

 

Zermatt/Cervinia continue (in our opinion) to offer the best conditions in the Alps with nearly 100km of pistes now open and skiing possible all the way to resort on the Italian side, and Furgg on the Swiss side.

 

Sölden and Obergurgl, both in the far south-west of Austria, are other good bets if it’s extent you are after, each with around 70km of pistes on offer. Elsewhere we reckon there are at least 30 resorts at least partially open for skiing this weekend, though most in a very limited capacity.

 

The weather is expected to remain largely quiet until the middle of next week. Thereafter it will turn increasingly unsettled with the prospect of some significant snow for many. 

Updated: 9.20am Friday 21 November 2014 – Mostly fine

 

There are areas of cloud drifting around the Alps this morning but it is essentially dry with sunny spells, the best of these in the south. It will be mild too, with afternoon temperatures reaching +6°C in Lech and +11°C in Chamonix.

Gressoney, Monterosa Ski, Italy Masses of snow in the Monte Rosa region, which will partially open this weekend - Photo: monterosa-ski.com

The best skiing in the Alps remains in Cervinia/Zermatt where more than 70km of pistes are open and there is close to 2m of settled snow up top. Tomorrow you will be able to ski all the way down to Cervinia allowing a whopping vertical of some 1700m.

 

Over in France, Tignes will also officially open its Double M run down to Val Claret (though plenty of people are already using it) thanks to a combination of natural and artificial snow. However, more snow is needed lower down – especially with the opening of L’Espace Killy (the whole Tignes/Val d’Isère area) imminent next weekend. Snow is indeed forecast later next week but again favouring the south at this stage. We will keep a close eye on this in the coming days.

Back to this weekend and we expect at least 30 Alpine resorts to be at least partially open thanks to the recent snowfalls. The weather is expected to remain dry and mild with sunny spells and patchy cloud. 

Updated: 9.15am Thursday 20 November 2014 - All calm

 

For the first time in quite a while, it will be dry across the entire Alpine chain today. Cloud may plague some of the lowest valleys at times but, at altitude, it will be mostly sunny and very mild with freezing levels close to 3000m.

Sölden, Austria Gorgeous weather in Sölden today – which is expected to continue into the weekend - Photo: soelden.com

Not much change over the next few days either, which should make for some very pleasant skiing conditions in those resorts that are open. Talking of openings, a whole clutch of new resorts plan to spin their lifts for the first time this weekend including DavosMadonna di Campiglio

Obertauern and Montgenèvre, to name just a few. Find out more about what conditions they can expect in our detailed snow report later today... 

Updated: 9.25am Wednesday 19 November 2014 – Improving weather, fabulous skiing

 

There is still some cloud around across the eastern Alps this morning, notably in Austria where the odd shower (snow 1000m) is possible in the north. By contrast it is mostly sunny across the western Alps and this brighter weather will creep further east as the day progresses.

Gressoney, Monterosa Ski, Italy Dawn above Gressoney this morning - Photo: monterosa-ski.com

We are now entering a much quieter period of weather across the Alps with mild daytime temperatures and plenty of sunshine, but also some areas of cloud drifting around from time to time. This stable weather should last well into next week before it eventually becomes more unsettled again from the north-west. This morning the various weather models are hinting at some widespread snow towards the end of the month (possibly as early as the middle/end of next week) - so watch this space...

 

In the meantime there is going to be some fabulous skiing on offer with a whole string of new resort openings this weekend, including Val Thorens, Montgenèvre, Champoluc, Madonna di Campiglio, Livigno and Obertauern to name just a few!

 

For sheer extent of open terrain though, Zermatt/Cervinia, Sölden and Obergurgl are likely to be the front runners - all with over 60 or more km of pistes open. 

Updated: 9.15am Tuesday 18 November 2014 - Snow moves east

 

The southern and western Alps have seen the bulk of the snow in recent days. Today, this snow has moved further east with many Austrian resorts in-line for some moderate falls – at least at altitude.

Villgraten, Ost-Tirol, Austria Fresh snow for many Austrian resorts today. This is Villgraten in the Ost-Tirol - Photo: alfenalm.at

So expect 10-30cm at altitude across many Austrian resorts today (very locally a bit more) with a rain/snow limit between 1000 and 1400m.  Generally speaking it will be drier and brighter the further west you are in the Alps, though a few flurries may move back into the northern French and far western Swiss Alps later.

Zermatt, Switzerland Brighter skies for many western Alpine areas today. This is Zermatt - Photo: apartment-zermatt.ch

For a combination of weather and snow we expect the best skiing today to be in Zermatt/Cervinia and Saas-Fee. Indeed with 65km of pistes open, the Zermatt/Cervinia now offers the greatest extent of skiing in the Alps. Obergurgl and Sölden (when the weather clears) will also offer a similar extent of slopes, but weather conditions here are more challenging today.

 

Later in the week the weather will become drier, brighter and milder in all Alpine areas. See our updated forecast this afternoon for more details...