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Zermatt (and Cervinia) 2017/18

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
In the spirit of last year here is the new 17/18 weather thread for Zermatt / Cervinia. After what was a fairly weak season in 16/17 lets hope the weather gods are feeling a tad more generous this year and things get kicked off properly.

I've linked in below some useful websites (some of which are still in summer mode but some getting back in action):

Zermatt Main Site: https://www.zermatt.ch/en

Ski Passes: https://www.matterhornparadise.ch/en/winter/tickets-skipasses

Piste Map: https://www.matterhornparadise.ch/pdf/panoramakarten/panoramakarte_winter.pdf

News Updates:

- https://www.zermatt.ch/en/Media/News
- https://www.thelocal.ch/tag/zermatt

Webcams: https://www.matterhornparadise.ch/en/current/webcams

Avalanche Risk: http://www.slf.ch/lawinenbulletin/schneedecke_wetter/index_EN

Live Lift Status: https://www.matterhornparadise.ch/en/winter/lifts-pistes

Hopefully the Furgsattel lift will start running early doors like last year on or around Monday 16th October to interlink with the Ski Test running from the 14th October to 3rd December.

Hopefully he doesn't mind but from last years thread please find below @JohnMo's recommendations for itinerary runs in Zermatt - a great summary of whats there if enough of the white stuff comes down.

67/68 – run down next to the piste. Nice and wide. Not a lot of cliff edges. Usually plenty of people around and from most places you can be seen from the piste. The best place to start.

59/60 – similar to 67/68 but a bit steeper and not as many people around and can’t be seen from the piste.

58 – known by my daughter as “death route” because I took her on it when her skiing was not really up to it. It starts off dead easy then gets steep then falls into the trees. I love it. Don’t do it unless you can handle really sharp turns or you have a desire to get very intimate with a tree trunk. Nowhere near a piste.

49 and 43 – just ways to get to restaurants or back to town but do them if you are passing by.

30 – getting into the real stuff now. Try this before you take the lifts over to Rote Nase and Stockhorn. If you enjoyed 67 and 68 you’ll probably enjoy this. But unless you are confident on this don’t try …

31/32/33/34 – heaven on earth in my opinion. I could spend a whole day playing over these routes. You get an ancient lift over there that only serves itineraries and not groomed pistes. Unless you know them don’t try to do them on a bad light day – it would be easy to stray off route (or just go off the edge of a rock drop!) and no-one is going to find you. On a clear day there should be enough other people around to make you feel not too nervous. If you go to Zermatt and are a reasonably competent and confident skier (and fit) it would be a real pity not to head over here. But do check whether your own insurance covers you.

10 – easy peasy lemon squeezy. But surprisingly nice run still. Another good one to try if you just want to find out if you can cope with itineraries.

16/17/18 – Great runs to do and often have unskied snow for several days after a dump but they do not get a lot of people on them so those of a nervous disposition might not like them. Can be very steep in parts and there are rocks a plenty. If you were fine on the Stockhorn sector you should try these ones as well. But it is much better to do with at least one other person (and stay in sight of each other) than on your own.


Last edited by Poster: A snowHead on Thu 21-09-17 10:54; edited 1 time in total
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Cheers @Run28, the webcam at Trockener Steg is showing a nice smattering of white stuff and the lower glacier below Furgsattel is looking bright white now. Most encouragingly the artificial snow has been blasting away and the piste bashers are working at creating that link between the lower glacier and the lift station at Trockener Steg. Barring a disaster there should be no problem with the Furgsattel lift opening up on the 16 October due date. Until then of course the summer skiing up on the Klein Matterhorn glacier is still going and should be benefiting from the recent snow.
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will be watching this thread with interest, along with Noza's weather outlook thread. Off back to Zermatt in Feb- lovely snowHead
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I am off to Cervinia on the 25th Nov for a week as part of Warren Smiths ski academy. Less than four weeks away and I am getting nervous that the only open terrain will be on the Glacier. Snow and cooler conditions are forecast this weekend, but I doubt enough to be a real game changer.
Can anyone advise whether the resort (if conditions are favourable) will be looking to open a significant proportion on the terrain by the end of November, or do the economics just not add up?
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The Winter Season opened fully on the 28th October so the resort will be keen to get as much open as possible...but as always its all dependent on the snow base lower down the valley and how hard to cannons are working as to how much is open by the 25th November.
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I suppose I was thinking, if there was no natural snowfall but the temps were low, percentage wise what could I expect to see open. Obviously if the temps are high then all bets are off.
However, the weekend storm (if various data points converge positively) could be a belter.
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There are three “openings:

the autumn one for the lower glacier (the upper glacier is open all year) - this was a couple of weeks later than the earliest possible time this year. Even now it looks a bit sad as the glacier is fine but then there is just an artificial strip to take you down to the lift station. That is skiing with bare rock either side of you.

The main resort opening which is 25 November. Usually a lot is opened for this but not the runs into town.

Everything else for Christmas.

Going out on 25 November is a risk. But even in the last few poor years you would have been OK.
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Thanks @JohnMo,
I suppose that what has concerned me a little is that I couldn’t see any signs of the snow cannons firing on the webcams.
Then again, I do not know the terrain so they may be out of view. It’s reasuring to know that A reasonable % of the piste will hopefully be opened for the 25th.
Still keeping my fingers crossed for a couple of chunky storms arriving before then.
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Penzanceopinion wrote:
Thanks @JohnMo,
I suppose that what has concerned me a little is that I couldn’t see any signs of the snow cannons firing on the webcams.
Then again, I do not know the terrain so they may be out of view. It’s reasuring to know that A reasonable % of the piste will hopefully be opened for the 25th.
Still keeping my fingers crossed for a couple of chunky storms arriving before then.


Keep those fingers crossed.

The easiest pistes to get open for the 25th November are the ones running down from Trockener Steg to Furgg. They are the next highest and are north facing. Unfortunately the Trockner Steg webcam gives you a good view of the currently open Furggsattel pistes but it then rotates over the top of those running down to Furgg. However if you look at the Schwarzsee webcam you can look over towards Trockner Steg and see the snow cannons firing away and the pistes getting formed.
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Heavy snow forecast for bonfire night snowHead
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Actually I just had another quick look. Look at the Gornegrat and Rothorn webcams. They are at the top of the other two largest mountains on the Swiss side. They also have the snow cannons blasting away. They clearly are going to do their best to open as scheduled on the 25th. On the Italian side where you start from there is little action. However, if you look at the Plateau Rosa panorama webcam you can see the snow cannons blasting on the piste from Plateau Rosa down to Laghi Cime Bianche. However if there is no snow in the next three weeks then that would be the only one that opens. The good news is that there is some serious storm brewing up (at least on the Swiss side) for 5-6 November. That is still a few days out so could change but it is now close enough to start taking seriously.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
The cannons on the Cervinia side appear to have fired up yesterday at least down to mid-mountain level (Plan Masion) 2555m. So I am fairly hopeful (usual caveats apply) we can ski down to there, the last week of November. The storm rolling over the alps from Saturday onwards, could be a real game changer for Zermatt and Cervinia, Snow predictions have fluctuated from 10cm (Bergfex Cervinia yesterday) to 200cm (snow-forecast Zermatt this morning). If what transpires is somewhere in the middle - it should be a real game changer.
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As always take Snow Forecast with a monumental pinch of salt...but I'm keeping my eyes peeled on the webcams to see if the dump transpires!
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
First visit to Zermatt for me this season-not until 24th March though
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
VolklAttivas5, you lucky little skier! snowHead
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Run28 wrote:
As always take Snow Forecast with a monumental pinch of salt...but I'm keeping my eyes peeled on the webcams to see if the dump transpires!


I agree re any individual forecast but the ensembles of the various runs (as loved on the weather thread on here) are starting to agree something big is on its way at the end of the weekend:

http://old.wetterzentrale.de/pics/MS_846_ens.png
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To be honest with you, the ensembles are pretty much the only forecasting tool I take much notice of for forecasts beyond 3 days. The non convergent lines the further out you look highlight the vast range of possible scenarios and give a kind of reality check.
With that being said’ I must admit I’m a sucker for the pretty maps on many of the well known ski/ snow sites.
I have been waiting for the upcoming storm to start flattening out on the ensemble chart. But as we get closer the steepness is holding out - Matterhorn like! Very Happy
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Heavy snow still holding up in the forecasts
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Plenty of snow falling from Riffleberg and above. Snow line moving down to the village later today snowHead
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Plenty of snow falling from Riffleberg and above. Snow line moving down to the village later today snowHead
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@twoodwar, yay
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Snow in town today!

Facebook video
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Looks as though the chunkiest part of the storm was pushed East, 25mm up top of fresh and 5-10 lower down.
Confused
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Always great to see the Findeln webcam with a generous dusting at the start of November. Further dusting forecast for today - hopefully it holds up.

And the Winter panoramic map has returned...

Winter is coming.
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Looking good so far. Fingers crossed for some good dumps over the next six weeks as we're going to be in Cervinia at Christmas for the first time ever!... Very Happy
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Penzanceopinion wrote:
25mm up top of fresh and 5-10 lower down.


But that's the liquid precipitation surely (or you meant cm not mm) -> https://www.zermatt.ch/en/Snow-report#snowreport is reporting 25cm of fresh up top in last 24 hours
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10 inches!
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Sorry - I was being a chump - I meant to say 25cm and 5-10cm
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More snow forecast coming in from the south tonight and continuing tomorrow.
Cervinia between 10-30cm, less in Zermatt
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Zermatt looking to get c5cm at mid level over the next 48 hours...or so models suggest. Interesting predictions coming for the weekend - Bergfex being bullish as always.
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Nice video of what conditions are like at the top at present:

https://www.facebook.com/WarrenSmithSkiAcademy/videos/1552011548223785/
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The skiers favourite morning TV channel in Zermatt is now being streamed live on YouTube...get your fill of terrible music, live webcams, rail and lift updates and general news.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCAraKfTPP7tpWfkgChmqTgQ
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quick question, am in zematt for a couple of weeks from monday on a basi course.... trying to pack smart..... its looking pretty cold on snow-forecast..... minus 15 with windchill on top..... is there anyone there who can confirm that this is the forecast? as snow-forecast are not always that accurate.....
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Looking through all of my checklist sites its looking to be very cold at the start of the week and then settling to be c-5/c-10 and hovering between that for the rest of the week.
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@ajc2260626, We are off to Zermatt on Saturday for a few days. Based on past experience, do make sure to take plenty of layers. I know I am.The snow forecast can be way off, but the general weather system and corresponding air temperatures is usually right. In addition it can get very cold on the glacier (this time last year, minus 20!). The wind in particular can be bitter, and can, unfortunately, close the lifts.
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@ajc2260626, I am in Zermatt currently, ignore Snow-forecast - use this instead -

Zermatt - village
http://wetterstationen.meteomedia.ch/?station=067480&wahl=vorhersage

Gornergrat
http://wetterstationen.meteomedia.ch/?station=067490&wahl=vorhersage

Klein Matterhorn
http://wetterstationen.meteomedia.ch/?station=067471&wahl=vorhersage

I have found this to be by far and away the most accurate weather resource here - it comes from weather stations located here in the village/mountain. It's in German obviously but Google Translate is your friend. As you can see, there is snow due down to village level over the weekend and I can confirm it's very cold in town today! Generally the above forecasts are bang on. Plan on lots of layers!!

Hope that helps!
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cheers guys, thats what i thought....i am actually going to take my big puffer north face ski jacket which comes into its own in low temps...... no good for hiking as too heavy but perfect for piste skiing and standing around!

if any snow heads are there and fancy a pint give me a shout.....
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@Tartanfairy,

I agree those forecasts are better. Personally I don’t tend to use any of the single predictions beyond a very short period of time. For example looking at the ensembles (on Friday lunchtime):

http://old.wetterzentrale.de/pics/MS_846_ens.png

you can see that there is still quite a bit of uncertainty about the next couple of days. But Sunday and even more so heading into Monday is looking very hopeful. Then it looks pretty certain to be dry for a few days. After that the various runs are giving such massively different outcomes it is hardly worth paying any attention. Any single prediction is simply picking up one of the runs so is giving no indication of the uncertainty.

The other thing I pay a lot of attention to is the Meteo Swiss precipitation radar forecast (I have it on an app rather than use the website). It only goes out about 36 hours but you can see the banks of precipitation moving across Europe to hit Switzerland. It gives you a good indication of whether there is a huge bank about to dump on us or one tiny steak where the winds and the bouncing off the mountains would have to align for it all to hit any one place (e.g. Zermatt/Cervinia). As I type the radar forecast only goes out to 19.00 Saturday and shows a decent bank of precipitation coming in from the North West and hitting Geneva. Whether that bank makes it to Zermatt is anyone’s guess – the bigger bank seems to be coming after that.
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Arrived Zermatt yesterday. Today we managed to ski all morning till about 1.30pm. The skies were mostly clear, but there was a strong wind, which closed furgsattel chair just after 1pm. Cloudier for the rest of the afternoon, but not that cold. Started dumping in the village about 6.30pm, and the roads are now covered 😀. Update tomorrow. Not sure what time or whether the lifts will open, but it must be raging up there!
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It's too bad Zermatt downslopes so significantly, especially on a northwest flow. The radar returns have been hitting a wall all day just as they approach from the NW. I never knew how relatively dry the area was until I started studying the radar and models a few weeks ago. Lots of the Swiss and Austrian alpine above 2000m currently has a snow depth between 50 and 100cm. Several areas are now even above 1 meter, with heavy snow continuing. But Gornergrat at 3000m is barely above 30cm depth. That's hard to believe for such a high elevation considering the recent storm cycle.

I hope the cold frontal passage tonight produces. We really need a much deeper base.
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