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Zillertal 2017/18

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@Bennyboy1, that’s good I enjoyed mine too despite having a stinking cold the whole week
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
We were out at Zell am Ziller today, fantastic weather, but more like March than January! Pistes up high (when the lifts opened) were in excellent condition. Lower down started a bit clattery, and soft and cut up as the day went on. Lots of evidence of the effect of the rain on off-piste below about 2000m as well.
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
We spent the afternoon at Hoch Fugen and experienced very similar conditions to what RobinS describes in the post above.
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Something of a change today - here in Hainzenberg at 900m it is warm, and chucking it down with rain. I don't think we will be rushing out today.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
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Raining here in Fugen this morning. Webcams suggest that the rain/snow line is around 1500m (looks like very wet snow on the webcam in the car park at Hoch Fugen).

Avalanche Risk 4/5 forecast for above 1800m this afternoon, foehn and snowfall.

Think I'm going to stay in bed for a bit and keep an eye on the rain and the temperature on the webcams.
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Appears to be properly dumping it down on top of the penken this morning!!..............when i looked yesterday is said estimated 6cm....now saying 35cm!!!
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After much scanning of webcams this morning it seemed to not be raining up in the SkiWelt, and since it is on our Superski passes we gave Soll a look. Unfortunately the rain followed us! Rain up to 1600m and heavy snow above that. Did brighten up this afternoon to allow for a decent ski on very heavy soft pistes.
Back in Zillertal looks like the lower pistes have suffered a lot, but fresh snow on the trees higher up looks encouraging for stuff above 1600-1700m.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Arrived at Hoch Fugen at 12.00 to find fantastic conditions. Deep soft snow on piste and light powder off piste. Was generally quiet with little competition to put fresh tracks in the powder off the side of the piste.

As the afternoon went on the temp rose to 5deg and the snow turned cruddy and unpleasant on piste, although there was still some nice skiing in soft snow on the higher runs.

Wind got up later in the afternoon with huge amounts of snow transport going on. The lovely light powder off piste was blown away and replaced with heavy 'trieb schnee'.
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Temperature stayed a little below 0c at Hoch Fugen today. Pistes were soft up high and boiler plate down low. Off piste there is windslab almost everywhere. Skied a little bit of low angle stuff next to the piste, not the worst windslab I've ever skied, but a very long way from the powder of yesterday lunch time.
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Skied around the Konigsleiten end today. Piste conditions as near to perfect as you could want, lovely and soft high up, and below about 1600m very firm, but still reasonably grippy. One exception was a black run at the far side of Plattenkogel, pisted and untracked, except the pisted surface was breakable crust! Took a lot of care to ski that in any sort of style! Observed the off-piste from the lifts - some aspects seemed to have terrible crust, but others looked good, so we might take the fat skis out tomorrow to try it out.
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Ski touring to the summit of Kleiner Gamsstein today. Seemed like every ski tourer in Austria who wasn't at work had the same idea, but it didn't matter as everyone was relaxed and friendly and enjoying the blue skies.

Seems that the snow on the Gamsstein was much less wind affected than the snow in nearby Hoch Fugen. A few inches of powder on top of a firm base at 1900m, and spring hero snow lower down. Maybe there is an Austrian equivalent to Snow Heads which has been broadcasting the message about how great the snow is on the Kleiner Gamsstein?


Last edited by snowHeads are a friendly bunch. on Sat 13-01-18 7:29; edited 1 time in total
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@Oceanic, Sounds like you had better conditions than us - we toured up from Hainzenberg, but it was too steep and icy for skis/skins/harscheisen on one section so we had a few hundered feet of step kicking! Higher up got onto a nice forest trail, then the upper pistes, where conditions were lovely above the valley cloud.
That's it for Zillertal for us - off to Flachau now for most of the rest of the season.
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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@Oceanic, Haha Very Happy Oh yes, Kleiner Gamsstein is very popular, as is Sonntagsköpfl. We went for a tour higher up in Hochfügen and the snow was amazing. We timed it just right for the snow...
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You know it makes sense.
Got a sneaky day at Kaltenbach today. Lots of new snow and still chucking it down. 😀
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Conditions were excellent today once the cloud had lifted. Up to 20cm on the piste and was able to nip off the sides of piste to get fresh tracks. Good day all round.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Bennyboy1, lovely!
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Could I ask for a couple of insider tips in relation to our first trip to Zillertal in February.

Do people tend to take a pair of snow boots around with them for the bus/train legs between centres?

And how close an eye does one need to keep on the bus times on one’s end of day returns? Do they run into the evening? I’m seeing the timetables on the Zillertal website but wondering how conscious one needs to be of the details.

I’m a tout-le-montagne type, the kids 9 and 14 happy on blue and most reds, my partner is a nervy intermediate so we will be on confidence-building blues for a day or two. Based Mayrhofen.
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@RidgewayRover, personally I don’t bother with snow boots (nor for the kids) but if there is snow in the valley be it can be slippery but in town the only problem I find is after fresh snow.

Re busses, I have found that the busses run exactly to the timetable.
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Buses seemed to run to the times shown. They definitely leave dead on time. Ski buses dropped right to the gondola at Hochzillertal so if using the bus ski boots are fine. If taking the train then the walk was a bit longer but nothing you couldnt do in ski boots pretty easily. Even our I dont like walking 7 yr old was fine. Up to you as to how precious you are about boot soles getting scuffed/worn. Check google maps for waliking distances for the other resorts from the train stations.

There is also the normal post bus that runs pretty much the same places as the train. It may take longer but its times could suit better occasionally.
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In the Zillertal currently and using busses and trains. I prefer the trains, as I found them to be less crowded (unless two school classes join like this morning 😉).
It requires combination with local ski bus lines, which take you from the station to the gondolas (or vice versa). At least I used/saw them in Zell, Mayrhofen and Kaltenbach. You won‘t have to walk a lot. Maybe just wait a bit for the connection.

So far trains and busses were all on time. Dead on time.

Trains run approx. every 30 minutes. Busses depend on where you want to go. If it is further away busses might only run once per hour or so, so better to check the schedule and be on time!

Also, take into account that the local ski bus lines only run until a certain time on the evening. So if you go by train and arrive back at the home station in the evening, no ski bus anymore.

Most (nearly all) skiers I see (I‘m a snowboarder) do wear their ski boots on the bus and on the train. I also saw kids with ski boots while I‘m typing this.

All in all, it is quite convenient to get around without having to use a car.
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Just reading this with interest. We are coming for a 4 day break at start March (staying in Zell am Ziller) but have a hire car. Do you think it’s best to drive between ski areas or take the bus?

Probably will only visit Zillertal area and Hochfügen areas. My only thought was when skiing from Zell am Ziller to the end of the Ski area (Wald?) then it would be better to get bus back otherwise we need to turn back. We do cover a lot of terrain in not much time though Toofy Grin
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@mini_mo, if you have the car I would drive. Both areas have huge car parks at the base ....unless you want to enjoy the apres bars!

Re the Arena and getting there and back. We managed it a few weeks a go but I am not the expert. One thing I noticed. Coming back over to Zell has loads of lifts! But the best home run in the valley.



@VolklAttivaS5, would know best I think.
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@mini_mo, that‘s what I did twice this week, starting with the pistes in Zell and then making my way over the Arena Center to Königsleiten. Nice trip. Took the bus back at the end of the day. Went very smooth.
The bus doesn‘t go very often though, unless I got something wrong there is no bus between 15.20 and the last one at 17.10, but it will give you time for a cheeky beer after the gondolas have closed.

Can‘t say anything about going by car, as I personally didn‘t want to bother with ice scraping in the morning, parking etc. but it would certainly give you more flexibility.
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Seeing as a lot of you have given me plenty of advice on my current trip to the valley I though it best to give an update on where we have been and what the conditions are like. Some of the below tips etc may be like sucking eggs to a lot of you but will include anyway. If anyone wants any more info on where got busy when etc to try and plan then just drop me a message and I will see what I can do to help.

Sunday : Penken, Mayrhofen quite busy as to be expected but pistes seemed to hold up well for most of the day. Slightly overcast but not totally flat light. Warmed up in the afternoon and the home runs got cut up a bit.

Monday : Penken again headed over to Eggalm. Really nice blue bird day. On piste conditions excellent. The tiny bit of side piste I looked at was very firm and crusty. Not my cup of tea. Again very warm in the afternoon and it showed on piste low down.

Tuesday : Hintertux. Green line bus from Mayrhofen train station straight to the glacier lift station in 30/35mins. Perfect condition. Hero type stuff on piste. Bit colder up there but glorious sunshine all day. Really quite quiet.

Today : Zillertal Arena / Gerlos. Bus from Mayrhofen train station to lift station at Zell am Ziller.10/15mins max. Again very easy.Tip: If getting the train you will need a bus the other end to get to the lift. The bus back stops at something like 14:30 and resumes service at 17:40 so we got the free redline bus to the station in Zell and got the train back.

More sunshine today pistes very good until the afternoon then got cut up a bit in the warmer weather. Wind up top did have some bite on the odd chairlift tho.

Snow forecast for the rest of the week so will see how we get on.
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Zell to Königsleiten and back today. Snow from 10am onwards. Low viz and near no viz up high. Wind chill up top on the exposed chairs getting back over was intense.

As expected got cut up a bit in the afternoon. The run back to Zell at the end of the day was just soft brown melted slush.

Still snowing now so let’s see what tomorrow brings.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Snowed all day in Mayrhofen pistes seemed to hold up well. Vizability a bit hit and miss depending which side of the mountain your are on. Side piste conditions very nice and playful but tracked out quickly. Would imagine conditions tomorrow to be excellent.

End of my week now so will hand over to someone else from here. Smile
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@DJH1989, thank you for the excellent reports.
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You know it makes sense.
Flying out on the 24th of this month and cant wait! first time ive been to this part of austria as usually go to areas nearer salzburg. Been checking webcams and snow reports on bergfex and im happy to see there seems to be plenty of the white stuff!
My parents have been to mayrhofen twice before (last time was at new year), although they didnt ski theyve given me some info on the area and where some things are.
Anybody else going to be out there on the 24th? May see you on the slopes or in the bars for apres wink
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
My husband and I are going to be there as well on the 24 for a week untill 3.3, can't wait!
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Thanks for the replies to my earlier post. We are here (Mayrhofen) now along with a lot of 20 somethings with snowboards and a fair few Belgian, Dutch, UK and German families. That said it can take a crowd although one learns to avoid the popular blues (I'm skiing with the kids).

Snowed all last night and much of today. I am no expert but digging my 9 year old out of drifts at the edge of the piste, I would say good powder conditions.
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michald, You excited? I cant wait to get out there now
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Joe519, Yes I am counting down the days! Two more exams to go and then nothing but white!
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Quote:


@Joe519, Yes I am counting down the days! Two more exams to go and then nothing but white!



Good luck with the exams! Where about's are you stopping if you don't mind me asking?
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@Joe519, Thanks!
We'll be staying in Mayrhofen, but plan on doing most of our skiing in Hochzillertal and Arena. You?
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We're stopping between Laubichl and Mayrhofen. Most likely Ahorn and Penken as haven't been to the area before but seems plenty enough runs and parks to keep us happy
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@Joe519, I'm feeling like a complete idiot, As I can't seem to figure out how to sent you a private message! Mad
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Click the + next to the persons name on the left and click send pm Smile
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Hi, I’m a long term lurker and an aging and very average Snowboarder. My last trip was to LDA in 2017, which didn’t turn out so good, I was overweight and out of shape, but didn’t really like the slopes either. This year it’s going to be different, I’ve lost weight, been doing exercise and have booked a week in Mayrhofen, starting 17th of Feb. I’ve got a good feeling about this one 😊

I’ve been to Mayrhofen before, quite a few years ago, but didn’t travel far as I was in lesson groups mostly, this year I want to explore and have the whole Zillertal superskipass booked.

From what I remember the Penkenbahn was always a sticking point, but I see it’s been upgraded since I last went, is it still a mad queue at 9am? I Think I mostly rode around the Peken and Horberg areas (have the pistes been renumbered in the last few years?) and liked them (avoided the Harikiri mindst) Also tried briefly the Rastokgel and Ahorn, liked the Rastogel (apart from the cat tracks) but found top of the Ahorn a bit dull and the long ride down having to many infuriating Cat Tracks. As you might gather I’m not a fan of the flat and narrow.
Where else is good? I never made it over all the Rastogel or the Finkennerside or Eggalm at all last time. I see there’s a ski route 75 marked from Rastogel to Eggam lifts, what’s this like? Is it OK on a board? Also, what the ski route 30 down to Hippach like? I don’t mind a bit of slush, moguls and/or unpisted bits as long as I don’t have to walk.

What I’m looking for smooth not too steep pistes for carving, a bit of steep (Maybe not as steep as the Harikiri, but I'll see how it goes) for a challenge and piste edge/nearby soft snow/powder for smashing about in (my off piste skills are a bit limited and digging myself out of bottomless powder is heart attack inducing). Any recommendations?

What about away days? The Hintertux has to be done I think, but my experience of Glaciers means I’d want a sunny day for that, they can be very cold and bleak when the clouds come in, is this a reasonable assumption? What about the Zillertal Arena and that area? It looks extensive on the piste map and I've heard a lot at tree level, so a good choice in bad weather? Is the train the best way to travel? I think my hotel is near the railway station. Anywhere else good, especially if it dumps?

Thanks for any help, sorry for the question overload. Weather forecasts for next week look erm undecided, but I sure it will be great 😊
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Quote:

From what I remember the Penkenbahn was always a sticking point, but I see it’s been upgraded since I last went, is it still a mad queue at 9am? I Think I mostly rode around the Peken and Horberg areas (have the pistes been renumbered in the last few years?) and liked them (avoided the Harikiri mindst) Also tried briefly the Rastokgel and Ahorn, liked the Rastogel (apart from the cat tracks) but found top of the Ahorn a bit dull and the long ride down having to many infuriating Cat Tracks. As you might gather I’m not a fan of the flat and narrow.
Where else is good? I never made it over all the Rastogel or the Finkennerside or Eggalm at all last time. I see there’s a ski route 75 marked from Rastogel to Eggam lifts, what’s this like? Is it OK on a board? Also, what the ski route 30 down to Hippach like? I don’t mind a bit of slush, moguls and/or unpisted bits as long as I don’t have to walk.

What I’m looking for smooth not too steep pistes for carving, a bit of steep (Maybe not as steep as the Harikiri, but I'll see how it goes) for a challenge and piste edge/nearby soft snow/powder for smashing about in (my off piste skills are a bit limited and digging myself out of bottomless powder is heart attack inducing). Any recommendations?

What about away days? The Hintertux has to be done I think, but my experience of Glaciers means I’d want a sunny day for that, they can be very cold and bleak when the clouds come in, is this a reasonable assumption? What about the Zillertal Arena and that area? It looks extensive on the piste map and I've heard a lot at tree level, so a good choice in bad weather? Is the train the best way to travel? I think my hotel is near the railway station. Anywhere else good, especially if it dumps?


Just back from a week in Mayrhofen.

I have done 4 weeks there in the last 3 years and have never had queue for more than a minute or 2 in either direction. Don't have any experience of the old lift but heard it could be pretty horrendous.

Ski route 75 is a really nice run down through the trees. There are no flat parts but it's fairly narrow all the way down - a road basically. It seems to always have been pisted on the various occassions I have done it. Should be fine on a board I would have thought so long as you can control your speed as it usually fairly busy. When I've visted Eggalm previously (usually a bit later is the season) I've found conditions and bit patchy but was pretty good last week. There are some nice long runs so definitely worth a visit.

Went to do Ski route 30 last week but couldn't find it. Not sure it's signposted. Looking at Google Earth, the entrance looks to be towards the bottom of the beginners area rather than, as I thought, off the top of the button. There was snow all the way down to the valley floor last week and a fresh dump overnight Friday (10cm+ in town) so I would imagine it should be in reasonable nick.

Skied Hintertux and Zell last week for the first time. For Zell you can take the bus or the train from Mayrhofen Banhof. If you take the train you then need to pick up the free ski bus in Zell to take you round to the lift so the bus is maybe a bit more convenient. Timetable for both bus and train here:

http://www.zillertalbahn.at/data.cfm?vpath=ma-wartbare-inhalte/ma-downloadfiles/fahrplan-2018_a3_ab-10122017_web

For Tux, an option is to ski round to Eggalm and then ski down to the valley and pick up the bus there.
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