Austrian, French and Italian ski areas are preparing for a delayed start of the 2021 season

Glacier ski areas in France and Italy are expected to be allowed to open in a few weeks, as countries relax their lockdown measures in the event of a pandemic. In Austria, glacier ski areas that could have opened earlier (but chose not to because it meant losing too much money due to operating restrictions due to the pandemic), say they will now open for summer skiing.

French ski resorts were able to open up to tourists during the winter but were not allowed to use the ski lifts. The situation is changing and Chamonix, for example, announces that its Aiguille du Midi cable car will resume service from Wednesday 19 May.

I hope this means that the plans for Les 3 Alpe to open for summer skiing on the last weekend of this month and for Tignes and Val d’Isère to open their glacier ski areas next month are all on the right track.

The good news, from a weather point of view, is that it has been cold and snowed the last few days. The Kitzsteinhorn Glacier above Kaprun and Zermatt in Switzerland are among the resorts that have reported 15 cm (6 ″) of fresh snow on their glaciers in the past 24 hours.

(A snow season still awaits in Kaunertal – opening May 15)

In the almost opposite position of France, Austria allowed its ski areas to open all year round but did not allow night tourism, leading a number not to open at all until present this year. That is about to change with hospitality allowed to reopen from May 19e and three glacier ski areas which are among those which had not opened so far this year for economic reasons, the Dachstein, Kaunertal and Molltal Glaciers, now announce that they will open their slopes for skiing for the first time from the 15the or 22nd April.

In Italy, the government has indicated that it hopes tourism will resume from mid-May and that the ski areas of Passo Stelvio and Cervinia hope to open soon. The two of us are among a handful of open areas when Italy’s second lockdown began last fall.

Four more Austrian glaciers are already open, as well as several glacier ski areas in Norway and Switzerland.

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