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Saalbach and Zell am See connection

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Looking at google maps i can see how the proposed lift would drop into the main valley just uphill from Viehofen.
Not really a skiable route for most of the season i would imagine (similar to route 68? to Viehofen.
Sure plenty of people will come over from the more limited Zell area but personally dont think i would take the time and effort to head over to Zell if i was staying in Saalbach.
Maybe a one off for novelty, however i have never skied in Zell so may be totally wrong of the merit of the pistes there.
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ianbradders wrote:
Looking at google maps i can see how the proposed lift would drop into the main valley just uphill from Viehofen.
Not really a skiable route for most of the season i would imagine (similar to route 68? to Viehofen.

No, the run is on the other side of the valley and north facing, so I would expect it to hold the snow better.
ianbradders wrote:
Sure plenty of people will come over from the more limited Zell area but personally dont think i would take the time and effort to head over to Zell if i was staying in Saalbach.
Maybe a one off for novelty, however i have never skied in Zell so may be totally wrong of the merit of the pistes there.

Plenty of good skiing at Zell, so certainly worth an occasional visit Very Happy
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The orientation of the run and the proposed set up will allow them to keep that run open all season in most winters. I would think from the point of view of the easiest link into S-H and the steepness of the mountain there they will need to have the base station across the road but in view of what extra it must cost there is maybe some other geo-physical or planning regulatory reason for the two stages. From a practical skiing point of view having the interim station where it is it will allow skiing down to it until the Schmittenhohe closes whereas if it went right to the valley the altitude there would maybe have the snow retreating uphill sooner regardless of the lack of direct sunlight. As was said above the piste 68 to Viehofen will not last as long in most winters so at least doing it this way means the new run on the Schmittenhohe side will remain an enjoyable run in its own right rather than just an optional feature of the connection hub?
As for timing, if the procedural boxes are all ticked I wouldn't rule it out as being fully operational next winter, remember Schmittenhohebahn AG is now more than half owned by Porsche - absolutely no shortage of cash there to delay or need to spread out the cost of the works?
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Some update..?

http://www.wintersportweerman.nl/2015/03/27/57960/kogel-door-kerk-integratie-zell-am-see-kaprun-en-saalbach-is-nu-hard-feit/

Who can read and translate.. But seems, that some plans are on..(?)

Fieberbrunn is already reality.. Connection is ready for next season..
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According to our ski instructor (in Hinterglemm) today the link should be in place in 3yrs time.
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https://translate.google.co.uk/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=y&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wintersportweerman.nl%2F2015%2F03%2F27%2F57960%2Fkogel-door-kerk-integratie-zell-am-see-kaprun-en-saalbach-is-nu-hard-feit%2F&edit-text=&act=url

Will hopefully show the article translated. Unfortunately not the newspaper.
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@ianbradders, erm, google does give you a fair bit of "Louis van Gaal"-Dunglish, viz. "bullet now by the church" which could be translated by "an irrevocable decision"...
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Quote:

Who can read and translate.. But seems, that some plans are on..(?)



Well, you've got a Dutch blogger interpreting an article in last Friday's Salzburg Krone newspaper. From what I can make of it all:

Plans for the link from Zell am See to Viehhofen (and from there to Saalbach and Leogang) are finally coming together - but the article is still only describing 'plans' rather than actual decisions. The only firm decision appears to be the clearing and widening of the old run down to Viehhofen, which appears to be scheduled for this summer, and some preparation for the snow-making system.

The proposed lift from Viehhofen to Zell will cost €25 million (including clearing pistes, installing snow-making machines and reservoirs etc) and will be 111 x 10-person bubbles with heated seats, and an uplift capacity of 2,800 per hour. The base station will be in the area where the current baby lift is in Viehhofen (i.e. at the bottom of Saalbach Piste 68 ).

And here the project hits a potential problem. Building a piste/lift between Zell and Viehhofen does not in itself complete the link to Saalbach, as there is no lift up from Viehhofen to the Saalbach system (currently a shuttle-bus connects Viehhofen to the Saalbach system at Schonleiten). In addition, Piste 68 is rarely open as it has no snow-making and is south-facing. So Saalbach presumably has to invest a similar sum in order to put in a lift and the required snow-making before the link is complete, and locals say that this is still at the discussion phase (given that there has just been a similar investment in the link to Fieberbrunn, which definitely opens for the 2015-16 season, and in a new chair-lift to replace the despised Bernkogel T-bar).
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Though, by my understanding, Fieberbrunn is covering most of the cost of the Hinterglemm link.
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@quinton, 111 x 10 person bubbles carrying 2800 per hour strikes me as a lot of uplift if its never to be a full link? Either that or Zell am See's cash is burning through its pockets as they've had to sit on it since the Hochsonnberg extension was kyboshed. It may well be the same as @espri says about Fieberbrunn covering more of the cost there with Zell having to cover more of it here to make the Piste 68 a proper link, after all Zell being cash rich but area poor they have much more to gain?
Maybe that makes more sense as I find it strange that the run down the Schmittenhoehe would need much snowmaking in all but the most snowless of winters.
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blauepistenfan, a member of the German alpinforum.com, provided an interesting overview of future plans in the Glemmtal (Saalbach-Hinterglemm, etc.). Of these only the Fieberbrunn-Hinterglemm link and the Bernkogel chairlift (replacing the double T-bar) are planned for next winter. The Viehhofen lift onto the Schmittenhöhe will probably come next, though seemingly only the upper section initially. I don't know a definite date for that but it probably isn't too far off. The other lifts, from Viehhofen up to the Asitz (connecting to Leogang and Saalbach) and from Jausen onto the Schattberg (as well as the suggested replacements of existing lifts) will probably be built further into the future (presuming they are built at all).
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http://www.skiresort.info/ski-resort/saalbach-hinterglemm-leogang-skicircus/ski-lifts/ , on skiresort info, under planned lifts, top section of gondola to be built this year, lower section in 2016.
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@Saalbachsnowhead, so this is looking a pretty accurate annotation then?

http://abload.de/img/viehhlts8q.jpg
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According to the Schmittenhohe lift company website, the plans for the lift and pistes between Viehhofen and Zell am See are now in place, but the press release is still missing any dates: http://www.schmitten.at/en/service/press/from+glemmtal+%28the+glemm+valley%29+up+to+the+schmitten_p1472

Apart from stating that the general clearance work and the establishment of the red run and snow-making groundworks will be done in August, there are no construction dates for the gondola. The plan is to build the upper section first, then the shorter, lower section.

There is still nothing on the Saalbach website about the completion of the link - i.e. a lift up from Viehhofen and snowmaking on Piste 68 - and the Schmittenhohe press release still talks about using the Postbus or the Shuttlebus to get from Viehhofen to the Saalbach lifts at Schonleiten.
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@hammerite, That annotation shows the base station of the lift on the wrong side of the road compared to the other plans, I believe the idea is if the bottom section crosses the road and ends up by the bottom of the nursery slope, then in the future if a lift went back up to the schönleiten they could share a base station area. This is shown on a plan on the schmitten website ( link above ).
The lift that would be built back up the other side of the valley, would this go to the top of the schönleiten or ( what I thought would make more sense) the top of the polten lift? Any news on this at all or do we just have to wait?

The top section of the schmitten - viohofen gondola would have to be built this year or else you would end up with a red run that terminates at the top of a ski route? Any idea on what the lift may be called?
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@Saalbachsnowhead, @quinton, thanks, that's all very interesting.
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New Saalbach piste map online, http://www.saalbach.com/fileadmin/user_storage/saalbach_com/Dateien/Panorama_Skicircus_2015.jpg
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Interesting is the new piste at the Steinbergbahn in Leogang, still shown as a project, probably because there are still administrative hurdles to be crossed (in May, I think) before it can be made official.
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Saalbach-Hinterglemm-Leogang-Fieberbrunn(-Zell am See-Kaprun?) is turning into an epic ski area. Possibly one the best in Europe/World?


Last edited by You need to Login to know who's really who. on Mon 27-04-15 16:06; edited 1 time in total
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Confirmation of New developments on the Saalbach website http://www.saalbach.com/en/winter/lift-company/news.html
Smile
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@Saalbachsnowhead, This still only refers to the link to Fieberbrunn, which the large display board at the top of the Sunliner/Reiter Ost lifts has shown all season. There is no news about any new developments towards Zell.
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Are there any plans at all to upgrade the T Bar lift 35 in the left top corner of the piste map?
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Tom W wrote:
Are there any plans at all to upgrade the T Bar lift 35 in the left top corner of the piste map?

I certainly hope not - though I must admit that it is a year or two since I visited the "secret valley" at the Seekar. Here's a photo from back in 2012...

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A little more info on new Viehhofen slope/lift plans on Schmitten website. Still not totally clear on dates but appears to say that piste/snow making construction will start this summer (no completion date?) and ground breaking for buildings for lift in August again no completion date.

http://www.schmitten.at/pdf/downloads/schmitten-drin-kinderpost/schmittendrin_so_15_web-doppel.pdf
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Thanks mbeaney

Still no news about how/when the new lift/piste will connect with the S/H area?

I presume the Schmitten lift company won't be carrying out this work unless the further connection has already been agreed even if this is a few years hence.
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This report (in German) confirms that the upper section of the lift from Viehhofen onto the Schmittenhöhe will be built for the season 2016-17. That would allow skiing the new piste from the Zell am See side. The aim then is to add the shorter lower section from the Glemmtal a year later. There is no mention of when a lift linking Viehhofen to the Asitz on the other (north) side of the Glemmtal, thus completing the link-up without needing to use the shuttle bus, is expected.

P.S.
This youTube video (also in German) reports on the official start of construction of the TirolS gondola linking Fieberbrunn and Hinterglemm. This will run next season.
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@espri, thanks, that explains why they are only breaking ground in August as reported by @mbeaney. When I read that I thought surely too late in the summer but presumably all they will do this summer is what can be left exposed without sustaining damage through next winter and then be finished for 16/17. Even if its another year before it connects or three before its a full link it looks like it will be a worthwhile additional run for ZamS right away.
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Found photos of the groundbreaking on 1st July 2015 on Facebook with 3 photos and some explanation

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.1194034727278667.1073742369.208059242542892&type=1
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@JWillsnowhead, looking at that satellite based graphic it occurs to me that is a quite a long run?
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This report isn't about the link from the Glemmtal to the Schmittenhöhe (we have aother year to wait for that) but rather the link being built this year to link Fieberbrunn to Saalbach and Hinterglemm, the TirolS gondola (Tirol/Salzburger Land), which has also been mentioned in this thread. Back on 16th July I took a walk to see how the construction was progressing and here now, prompted by the recent posts, are some photos.

The top station of the new gondola on the Fieberbrunn side is being built onto the existing bottom station of the Reckmoos Süd gondola and it looks as though you will be able to walk straight through from one to the other. Here are two photos of the construction work, one from below...

...and one from above...


Some of the lift pylons are already standing on the Fieberbrunn side (and the sample cabin which was displayed in Fieberbrunn has recently been removed, so I suspect it has been taken round to the lift)...


Next is the most interesting shot, looking from the Reckmoos Süd towards the Saalbach-Hinterglemm side. You can see the cutting through the trees which will take to gondola up to the top of the Reiterkogel above Hinterglemm, ending near the top station of the Reiter-Ost chairlift (and the top of the Sunliner chairlift). To the left of that is the piste being built back down to the valley.

A new ski hut is being built about the middle of the piste - to be run by a daughter of a neighbour of mine, I believe, so please support it!

On the ridge in the middle of the photo, if you have good eyes and a good screen, you can also see a couple of cranes at the top of the Bernkogel above Saalbach, which I assume are being used to construct the 6-seater chairlift being built there to replace the long double T-bar...


Walking back down to the valley I took this view looking towards the bottom station of the Reckmoos Süd lift and then, from the same spot looking in the opposite direction, you can see work being done on the ski track to the valley (it will have snow-making equipment which may help on this south facing slope)...




On the way down there were tempting refreshments for this hot day but I thought I should leave them to encourage the buuilders to finish the lift Laughing


Back in the valley I saw pipes for snow-making being laid alongside the new piste on the Hinterglemm-Saalbach side...


And the middle station of the lift is also progressing well, with garaging for two piste bashers as well as the cabins, I think. I was surprised to find that there is a bend in the lift track there that looks like almost 90°. I had originally imagined a straight lift going across the valley...


It all looks very promising - roll on the snow Very Happy
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Great pictures Cool
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espri, still looks a way off finishing, is it still on track to open this season?
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@JWillsnowhead, Good news but there is still nothing about actually connecting to S-H. Anyone heard any news about when the lift up from Viehofen to the Asitz is planned?
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@espri, Thanks for your report and pictures - very interesting and much appreciated. Very much looking forward to it. We've just arrived in Saalbach and will probably pop up to the Hecherhuette's weekly barbecue on Thursday evening. If I find out anything about the new link to Zell, I'll post it.
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@Bob, the construction seems to be progressing well to me, so I have no worries about it being ready by December.

@zellmaniac, I haven't seen any fixed date for a lift from Viehhofen up onto the Asitz but I guess it will come 1-3 years after the lift to the Schmittenhöhe is built, i.e. for season 2017 at the earliest. On the German alpinforum.com it has been suggested that various other lifts in Saalbach-Hinterglemm will be replaced in the next years (perhaps also related to a possible World Championships in 2023) but everything is still vague.

And, though unconnected to the new lifts described in this thread but still in the Ski Circus area, here are a couple of photos of work in progress on the new piste being built alongside the Steinbergbahn gondola in Leogang. The photos were taken from near the Krallerhof hotel in Leogang last Sunday (a rainy day when we decided going down a mine was the best option Laughing)



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Great pics! Very interesting.
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Thanks @espri, what a tremendous amount of investment from S-H. This really is a fantastic ski area!
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Thanks for the updates everyone, I have not been able to make it out to Zell this summer but will be there in Nov and should be able to report on the new lifts/piste layout on Kitzsteinhorn then.

These really are some exciting developments for the whole area.
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I have just noticed on the S-H website that they are building a new reservoir around the Polten area, does anyone know if this is to support existing snow making in that area or is it a precursor to installing snow making facilities on Piste 68 to Viehhofen in order to extend the season for this slope which would obviously be vital to any link future link to Zell.

Anyway I am very impressed with the S-H lift companies ability to throw cash around and they really are developing an world class ski area.
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@mbeaney, My assumption has been the latter - if they are at least getting started on the new link next summer I suppose that the infra-structure to support snow-making on piste 68 will be a pre-requisite to whatever else they do. They'd look a bit silly if they installed the new link and it proved to be impossible, owing to lack of snow, for anyone to go from Saalbach to Zell without riding a lift. As you suggest, it will be an extremely costly development, though shared between S-H and Zell/Kaprun. Snow conditions permitting, we'll be using piste 68 regularly this coming season, before it becomes a major thoroughfare.
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