Multiple ski centres in Scandinavia have reported stockpiling an unprecedented amount of snow for the summer of 2023. This practice, known as snow farming, has become increasingly common among resorts in the region. By preserving the snow through the summer months, they can spread it out in early autumn to create a solid base. Although some snow melts during the summer, the use of covers and insulation helps protect most of it from the sun, ensuring a significant portion survives.
Idre Fjäll in Sweden, offering cross-country ski tracks and downhill training from early October, has accumulated a total of 203,300 cubic meters of snow, the largest quantity ever stored. Calle Enarsson, the sales manager at Idre Fjäll, mentions that the demand for training groups has steadily increased since 2015. The resort is continuously improving its snow storage methods and is excited to welcome enthusiastic training and competition groups in the upcoming autumn.
Approximately 55% of the saved snow is dedicated to cross-country tracks, while the remaining 45% is used for downhill slopes. Although the 92,700 cubic meters of snow saved for this autumn is slightly less than the previous summer, the resort anticipates that using local bark as an insulation layer will improve the snow’s durability. They estimate that around 25% more snow will survive, resulting in a larger supply for the autumn season.
Johan Persson, the operations manager at Idre Fjäll, expresses confidence in the snow’s preservation due to increased coverage with bark. The resort looks forward to offering an extraordinary pre-season experience, thanks to the substantial amount of snow saved.
Meanwhile, Finland’s Levi ski area has also stored 200,000 cubic meters of snow for the opening of their skiing and cross-country skiing season in October, including the Levi World Cup alpine skiing event. The volume of snow saved surpasses last summer’s amount by 33%, setting a new record. Nine snow storage piles have been strategically placed at the Levi Black Slope, the Levi Glacier area on the Front Slopes, and the Northeast Slopes. The Levi Black Slope alone will receive 60,000 cubic meters of preserved snow to ensure the successful execution of the Levi World Cup in November’s second weekend.
The most remarkable feature of the resort’s snow farming is the Levi Glacier slope area, built in the summer of 2022, which is a unique concept worldwide. By continuously adding snow, the resort aims to maintain a year-round supply, safely covered during the summer. The snow recycling process in the Glacier area allows for an extensive skiable slope from early October.
Levi Ski Resort will celebrate its sixtieth ski season, commencing on October 6th for both alpine and cross-country skiers. Similarly, Idre Fjäll plans to open for ski holidays for the 2023-2024 season on October 21st, 2023.