The end of November is approaching. A number of good storms with lots of fresh snow already passed in October and November. That snow is now settling. Important question: Is the snow cover already thick enough to ride next to the slopes? Snow levels are always something arbitrary, especially when they're provided by the ski areas themselves and maybe increased a bit with some technical snow. Using the data from the avalanche services, the national weather institutes, webcams, locals and our own observations, we have compiled a list of those regions in Austria where there is already a good snow cover (of natural snow) outside the slopes. You'll find a summary and a map with the current snow levels outside the slopes below, including an explanation per region.
The so-called Totes Gebirge is located on the border with Oberösterreich and the northwest of Styria. South of these mountains you'll find ski areas like Loser Altaussee and Die Tauplitz. At an altitude of about 1600 meters there is already a closed snow cover of about 80-120 cm. With this base it is good riding on alpine meadows and open faces when the next dump comes down. Unfortunately there are only a few larch trees here, so they need a bit more snow for the tree runs to get in shape.
There is also a lot of snow just around the corner at the Dachstein Glacier. It has been snowing here since the end of the summer and as a result there is already 250 cm on top of the ice of the glacier. If you leave the ski area at the glacier, the snow quantities will decrease rapidly, although the skiing can be good at the alpine meadows of Schladming. There is still too little snow between the trees.
Vorarlberg is known as a snow magnet and Damüls has been claiming for years that it's the snowiest village in the world. It is therefore not surprising that the ski areas on the border between Vorarlberg and Tirol are in good shape. In the ski areas west of the Arlberg tunnel you'll find a base of about 50-80 cm of snow at an altitude of 1900 meters. Here you find an overview of all the ski resorts in Vorarlberg.
Of course there is a lot of snow in Sankt Anton am Arlberg, but if you look closely you will see that it is mainly the peaks north of the Arlberg that have the most snow. The snow cover becomes a bit thin on the valley run in the direction of Sankt Anton.
The north has more snow, especially around Lech, Warth and Schröcken there's plenty of snow. The mountains here are also slightly lower and there's a good base on the alpine meadows. The skiing can be very good if you don't push it that much. There's more snow above 2200 meters, but because of the rocky surface a few extra storms won't hurt.
A bit further west we'll end up in Silvretta Montafon. You can find a thick pack of snow above 1700 meters. It has melted a bit in the valleys due to the high temperatures the Alps had to deal with the last couple of days, but there is a closed snow cover above 1400 meters. Just wait for a new storm and it will be ON over here.
The Kleinwalsertal can be found on the same border as the areas above. This valley is a classic snow magnet, just like the Tannheimertal and Oberstdorf. You'll find 50-80 cm of snow at an altitude of 1800 meters. The wind has been pretty strong and it has been warm the last couple of days, but with a new dump it will be good riding on the alpine meadows and north faces.
The Hohe Tauern, what's in a name?. This is the mountain range in the south of the Salzburgerland. Here you'll find ski are areas such as the Kitzsteinhorn at Kaprun, Obertauern, Sportgastein and Zauchensee. You'll find over a meter of snow above 2500 meters and about 50-80 cm between 2000 and 2500 meters. Rocks (and crevasses) are a point of attention, but if you ride with care you can already experience some good riding.
The skiing is even great on the alpine meadows of Zauchensee with over 50 cm of snow above 1400 meters. The snow cover between the larch trees is getting very thick on the higher parts of the mountain. There is still some snow needed in the valley.
The first snow came down on the glaciers in Tyrol at the end of August and the storms just kept coming in. You can already find 100-150 cm of snow at 3000 meters altitude, but the wind has caused great differences. Rocks and crevasses remain something to stay focused on. It's winter on the glaciers of the Kaunertal, Pitztal, Sölden, Stubai and Hintertux. With the right knowledge and some conservative skiing, you can find some good lines. You can find great mountain guides and make use of their knowledge if you want to go on an adventure. For example via the Freeride Center Stubai, the Freeride Center Sölden, the Freeride Center Pitztal, the mountain and ski guides in the Kaunertal or the team of Rock 'n Snow in Hintertux.