Sneak preview of this year's highlights in Austria's “snow bowl”
In Obertauern, the “snow bowl” in the state of Salzburg, the skiing season begins much sooner and with far more snow than anywhere else. That’s a promise. A guaranteed promise. Why? For a start, because of Obertauern’s unique location. The little village is situated 1,740 metres above sea level, right at the Radstadt Tauern mountain pass, and has for many decades now not seen one winter without ample snow. Then there is its climate: Weather from the north hits weather from the south, and at such an altitude that means winters with plenty of snow. That makes Obertauern one of the few places in the Alps outside of the glacial regions that can welcome its first skiing visitors as early as mid-November and bid its last guests farewell after Easter.
This year’s winter season in Obertauern officially begins on November 16. That is also the date on which the first ski lifts open. Zealous snow riders can take advantage of attractive package deals that are available from the beginning of the season till Christmas Eve. Prices for one week at a 3-star hotel including half board and ski pass, for instance, start at €706 per person.
The first exciting winter event is the meanwhile customary opening concert on December 3 – this time featuring the German electro-pop group Glasperlenspiel. Then there is the legendary annual Krampus party on December 9. Given that according to tradition the beastly creatures (i.e. “Krampuses”) set out to find and punish naughty kids and teenagers, the Krampus party is strangely enough particularly popular among the younger generation. But then, their mood for music and dancing may also have something to do with the legendary après-ski and night life scene in Obertauern that is in full swing at this time of the season.
On April 17, 2017, Obertauern will be staging the Gamsleiten Criterion, Austria’s largest treasure hunt, for the 11th time in a row. At the bottom of the Gamsleiten 2 slope, one of Europe’s steepest pistes with a gradient of at times 45 degrees, more than a thousand hunters will set out to find 30 treasure chests buried deep in the snow. But it’s not the chests that they will be after – it’s the contents. Many exciting prizes await the lucky finders – best of all, the key for a luxury car that the winner can drive off with immediately after the event.
Learn more at www.obertauern.com
Events and special-deal weeks in Obertauern:
Start of the season with partial lift operation: 16/11/2016
Opening weeks: 16/11 – 24/12/2016
Ski Opening: 30/11 – 04/12/2016
Opening concert featuring Glasperlenspiel: 03/12/16
Krampus Party: 09/12/16
Tauern Ski Day: 10/12/2016
Bobby’s Snow Adventure (family weeks): 07/01 – 28/01/2017
Powder Snow Weeks: 07/01 – 28/01/2017
Sun & Fun Weeks: 25/03 – 08/04/2017
Intersport Alpenglühen: 26/03 – 01/04/2017
Bobby’s Snow Adventure (family weeks): 15/04 – 22/04/2017
Tauern Ski Day: 22/04/2017
Sun & Fun Weeks: 15/04 – 01/05/2017
Gamsleiten Criterion: 16/04 – 17/04/2017