SCOTLAND’S ski resorts increase in snowfall has provided a massive boost to their winter season.
The Scottish mountains in the Highlands are comparing favourably with many in Europe, Scandinavia, the US and Canada.
While the rest of Britain talks of floods and mild temperatures, the Scottish ski centres are reporting heavy snowfall, leading staff having to dig out ski lifts and even huts and cabins.
At Glencoe Mountain Resort, Nevis Range and CairnGorm Mountain it has been snowing almost non-stop since December. Staff at Glencoe report more snow than they’ve seen for at least 15 years.
Glenshee also already had excellent snow cover at high level and, in just the last seven days, has had an amazing dump which has also filled in lower level runs and features.
Everywhere, winds have whipped the soft powder snow into drifts, which help transform jumps and natural gullies into even better features for skiers and boarders and has made CairnGorm’s half-pipe “massive”.
Heather Negus, chair of Ski-Scotland, said: “Season 2009-10 was the best in recent memory, both in terms of the amount and quality of snow and also in the numbers of customers visiting all the ski areas.
“That successful winter provided a huge boost for the ski areas and all businesses near them and also raised awareness in Scotland and the rest of the UK of exactly what the Highlands can offer, at a fraction of the price of travelling abroad for a snowsports holiday.”
Today, all five mountain ski areas are open for business, including The Lecht which missed out on the snow which swept in from the south west, leaving it in the rain shadow of the Grampian Mountains.
However, The Lecht also has had more snow with more expected tomorrow. With a variety of weather predicted for the weekend, Ski-Scotland advises skiers and boarders to check out weather, snow and road conditions on the official website www.ski-scotland.com .
Heather added: “It can be hard for customers to believe we have good snow when there is rain and even snowdrops flowering in the Lowlands and by the coast.
“We therefore suggest skiers and boarders check out the webcams on the official website and look at the ski areas’ Facebook pages where they’ll see just how much snow we have and the excellent sliding we can offer.”