Summer skiing is only possible in a few, high altitude European ski resorts where there is a glacier in the ski area. It is thanks to these glaciers, which keep ground temperatures low enough to prevent the winter's snow from melting, that summer skiing is possible. However, summer skiing is quite different from winter skiing. At such high altitudes, as high as 12,530ft in the Swiss ski resort of Zermatt for example, the strong summer sun obviously has an effect on the quality of the snow.
In some of these summer skiing resorts, ski lifts start as early as 7am and generally close between 12.30pm and 2pm. Summer skiing snow conditions are generally quite icy first thing in the morning, but the snow softens quickly and by mid-morning skiing conditions are just perfect allowing a few hours of great 'spring' skiing in the hot summer sunshine. By early afternoon, the snow becomes wet, slushy and heavy making skiing and snowboarding difficult and not particularly enjoyable. Early risers can enjoy summer skiing or snowboarding in the morning and after lunch go mountain biking, hiking or try out paragliding or some of the latest summer activities in the European Alps!
Tignes, the summer skiing hot spot!
Tignes can claim to be the summer skiing hot spot in the French Alps because of its 20km of ski runs, 12 open ski lifts, 750m of vertical drop, and its great snow park. The Grand Motte glacier which offers breath-taking views and some unforgettable summer skiing and snowboarding is open from July until early August and lifts open at 7.15am and generally stay open until 1.30pm depending on conditions. More info about Tignes
Les Deux Alpes – one of the highest ski areas in the world!
Les Deux Alpes’ slopes reach up to 11 800 ft making it one of the highest ski areas in the world. Thanks to its glacier, the Glacier du Mont de Lans, Les Deux Alpes offers perfect summer skiing conditions from June to the end of August. Les Deux Alpes’ summer skiing has an 800m vertical drop and 16 ski lifts open from 7.15am! The fantastic snowpark stays open too hosting BBQs and other great events… More info about Les Deux Alpes
World famous summer skiing in Mayrhofen
Summer skiing in Mayrhofen means sunny, beautifully groomed ski slopes up on the Hintertux Glacier. The Hintertux Glacier really is accessible to everyone as it offers disabled access from the base station at 1500m right up to the Panorama Terrace at 3250m of altitude! For snowboarders, the amazing Betterpark snow park stays open through the summer months too. More info about Mayrhofen
Summer skiing in Zermatt
Zermatt has the highest and largest summer skiing area Europe. With 25km of ski slopes and 8 ski lifts that stay open right through the summer, summer skiing in Zermatt is a delight. The wide ski slopes are just perfect for beginners and intermediate skiers and snowboarders. Experts can tackle the tricky, black mogul runs and snowboarders can enjoy the Gravity Snowboard Park, the best freestyle park in Europe! More info about Zermatt
Kaprun – summer skiing, ice bars and much more…
Kaprun is one of the most popular summer skiing resorts in Austria. Only 1 hour from Salzburg, Kaprun offers summer skiing up on the Kitzsteinhorn glacier, which reaches up to 9940 ft, with lots of great ski runs, mostly suited to intermediate skiers and snowboarders. In July and August the "Ice Arena" provides fun for all ages with snow slides, a snow beach and an ice bar to fill the long sunny summer days on the glacier. More info about Kaprun