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Daily blasts – there is an acute danger of avalanches in these ski areas in central Switzerland

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Lots of snow in December and now there is rain and warm temperatures: There is currently a high risk of avalanches practically everywhere in the ski areas of central Switzerland. Blasting doesn’t help everywhere either. Runway closures are unavoidable.

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The large amount of snow, rain and warm temperatures lead to an increased risk of avalanches. (Symbol image)

Wikipedia / CC BY-SA 3.0

When asked for 20 minutes, Urs Egli, Head of Marketing at Titlis Bergbahnen, said: “We have a high risk of avalanches.”

swiss-image.ch/Roger Gruether

«It rains a lot at high altitudes.  That greatly increases the avalanche danger, ”says Egli.  The Titlis Bergbahnen work every day to secure the slopes against avalanches.  Avalanches are also regularly blown up.

«It rains a lot at high altitudes. That greatly increases the avalanche danger, ”says Egli. The Titlis Bergbahnen work every day to secure the slopes against avalanches. Avalanches are also regularly blown up.

Titlis mountain railways

  • There is currently a comparatively large amount of snow in the mountains. Together with heavy rainfall, there is also an increased risk of avalanches in the ski areas of central Switzerland.

  • In Engelberg, the valley run even had to be closed due to the dangerous situation. That this happens due to the avalanche situation is extremely rare.

  • Slopes have also been closed in Andermatt. A few avalanche explosions should also have been carried out. Expect departures on Wednesday.

  • The area around the Brienzer Rothorn is particularly troubling for the Sörenberg Bahnen.

  • The situation is not so tense in the Mythen region. “We have a favorable avalanche situation in the entire ski area,” says the slope manager.

There is currently a lot of snow in the mountains. The temperatures are almost spring-like warm. It also rains heavily on Wednesday. This greatly increases the risk of avalanches in the Alps. The Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research estimates the avalanche danger in the Alpine region to be considerable to high, the second highest warning level. The ski areas in Central Switzerland are also affected.

In the Mythen region, the situation is currently not as tense as in other ski areas. Paul Bürgler, Head of Slopes and Rescue at the ski area, says: “We have a favorable avalanche situation in the entire ski area.” There was also no need to carry out avalanche explosions, said Bürgler. This is normally not necessary in the Mythen region.

Engelberg and Andermatt had to close slopes

Not so in Engelberg. When asked for 20 minutes, Urs Egli, Head of Marketing at Titlis Bergbahnen, said: “We have a high risk of avalanches.” The valley run from Titlis to Engelberg was closed on Wednesday due to the risk of avalanches. It is extremely rare that the valley run has to be closed due to the risk of avalanches. «It rains a lot at high altitudes. That greatly increases the avalanche danger, ”says Egli. The Titlis Bergbahnen work every day to secure the slopes against avalanches. Avalanches are also regularly blown up.

There is also a great danger of avalanches in the Andermatt ski area. Like the Titlis area, the Andermatt-Sedrun ski arena is located in an area with avalanche warning level 4. On Wednesday morning, therefore, few preventive explosions had to be carried out. As slope rescue chief Carlo Danioth announced, on Wednesday only those slopes were opened that did not require any measures. Based on the weather forecast, they already knew that there would be intense precipitation. “That is why we communicated early on that some systems will be closed today for safety reasons,” says Danioth.

“The current wet snow problem cannot be blown away”

The situation is similar at the Sörenberg Bergbahnen. «With the expected rain of well over 2000 meters, the situation on the Brienzer Rothorn will be very delicate. There is a lot of snow on the steep north-facing slopes and we expect a few larger departures in the afternoon, “writes Martin Vogel, Operations Manager, on Wednesday upon request. The situation will be re-analyzed on Thursday.

Blasting is also carried out regularly at the Sörenberg Bahnen. “The current wet snow problem cannot be solved, however. Here you can only wait and have the bad weather front removed, ”says Vogel. Due to the dangerous situation, a snowshoe trail, the village cross-country ski trail and a slope should have been closed. The entire area on the Brienzer Rothorn is also closed, according to Vogel. Fortunately, there are hardly any problems in the Dorf ski area.

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