Throughout the tumultuous summer of 2020, skiers and ski regions alike have kept their fingers crossed for a return to something approaching normal operations during the 2020/21 winter season. Last weekend brought the first major blow to those hopes, as Austria announced new lockdown measures for the month of November which include shutting down the country’s cable cars and ski resorts.
In effect from today, November 3 until at November 30, the new regulations close all ski resorts to the general public, as well as all cable cars. Ski resorts planning to open in November will now have to wait for the measures to loosen before opening their gates for the winter. Professionals will reportedly still be allowed to train at some resorts.
Austria now joins several of its Alpine neighbors in curtailing tourism and recreational activities for the near future. In Germany, the Zugspitze has postponed its season opening, while indoor ski halls remain closed until further notice. In France, new measures have shut down the glacier resorts of Tignes and Les 2 Alpes, while ski resorts in Italy have been ordered closed since October 26. Lifts are reportedly still turning for the time being in the autonomous northern Italian region of South Tyrol, and also in Switzerland.
Eight Austrian glacier resorts that were already in pre-season operation—Hintertux, Stubai, Sölden, Kitzsteinhorn, Pitztal, Kaunertal, Dachstein and Mölltal—have now closed their operations for November. Kaunertal and Pitztal will reportedly remain open for training purposes.
“Dear Stubai Glacier fans and friends! We very much regret that due to COVID-19 regulations we have to close our ski area from Tuesday November 3rd until probably the end of November,” posted the popular resort near Innsbruck.
“We regret to inform you that due to official regulations skiing on Hintertux Glacier ended on 2 November 2020 at 04.30 pm,” the Hintertux glacier resort reported on its website. “We are already looking forward to a healthy reunion on the mountain! In the meantime, we keep the glacier in mind as we all love him!”
“We are sorry to inform you, that our cableways, the ski area and our gastronomy as well as the amusement park Maiskogel (Maisi Flitzer) are closed from 03.11.2020 until approx. 30.11.2020 due to the COVID-19 protection measures regulation,” reported Kitzsteinhorn.