Snow fell in Munich in mid-October this year. Now the glaciers are open, and my favorite Austrian glacier ski resort has excellent conditions: Hintertux glacier! The resort is only a 2h drive from Munich in good weather/traffic conditions. Austria cleans the roads quite well, so is even possible to reach if it has recently snowed (though the final bit of road is a bit steep and windy; you could take a bus for the last several km if nervous about this).
There are three sections at Hintertux:
- Top 1/3 = down to Tuxer Fernerhaus
- Middle 1/3 = down to Sommerbergalm
- Bottom 1/3 = Talabfahrt (exit to valley)
When I was first at Hintertuxer Gletscher this year in mid-October for 2 days, only the top 1/3 down to Tuxer Fernerhaus was open. This includes the glacier section that’s open 365 days a year, right near the top. This past weekend (Nov. 7th), the next 1/3 was also open down to Sommerbergalm, although it was a bit icy with thin cover in parts. Let’s see how it is this weekend, as I plan on going again.
Here’s a view of the slope on the back side, the “Schlegeis Gletscher” area:
This slope on the back usually gets bumped up rather quickly, but is great snowboarding if you are there early(or on a quiet day…).
Here’s a view from the exit of Gletscherbus 3, the cable car that takes you to the very top at 3,250m (10,660′):
For those who read the earlier post about pictures of my snowboards, I’ve now tried out the Virus X-Treme Carver Premium 162… this board rocks. It holds well on ice and carves like the piece of fine engineering it is. I have yet to test it head-to-head against my F2 Speedster SL 158, but my impression is that the Virus board suits me better. My sliced fingertip can also testify to the sharpness of the Virus factory edge… watch out!
Getting to Hintertux
- If going by car, you will need to get a Vignette – the Austrian highway toll sticker which you put in the upper left corner of the windshield. 10 days costs a bit over 7 Euro, though you can also get a 2-month-pass or 1-year-pass if you’ll be skiing very often.
- Hintertux on the map: it’s basically at the end of the road running through Zillertal / Mayrhofen. Exit from the A12 is Wiesing.
- If you want a fantastic restaurant after your day on the slopes, I recommend the Alte Hütte in Madseit, at the Alpinhotel Berghaus (Madseit 711, A-6294). The grillteller with 3 kinds of meat, browned potato wedges, and all-you-can-eat salad bar really hits the spot.
- Lodging: I can highly recommend this Pension (Bed & Breakfast) right across from the Alte Hütte: Mehlerhof has a very rustic look, but well-equipped and quite new interiors.
- Weather warning: if it’s cold and snowing in Tirol, Hintertux will have some of the worst weather in the Alps. High winds, whiteout conditions, and fog/clouds on the slopes. So be aware: if the weather is poor, this resort may be your worst choice. This snow forecast website has excellent data for Hintertux by altitude.