Winter has finally arrived, and we’re heading up the mountain for our first ski day of the season. We got all of our ski gear ready yesterday, so that today we can be up and on the piste as quickly as possible.
Perfectly prepared for skiing in the Ziller Valley
This year, two pairs of cool new skis were under the Christmas tree for our children. Of course, the cool design is essential as it makes skiing so much easier – especially for girls!
The evening before our ski day we check the following information on the website www.mayrhofen.at:
The weather forecast promises sunshine after a snowy night – it doesn’t get any better. We decide there and then to buy a full day ticket and hit the pistes early. We prepare everything we need for the next day and lay it out ready: skis, boots, poles, helmets, warm clothing and gloves. Now all we need to do tomorrow is load the stuff in our car and drive. Very importantly, we also make sure we pack lots of sun cream!
It’s great to see that the kids can hardly contain their excitement. It doesn’t matter if you’re just visiting Mayrhofen or if you grew up here, the anticipation of the first ski of the season is just as thrilling.
Off to Mayrhofen and the Leisure Mount Ahorn!
Today’s the day. After a nutritious breakfast we set off to the Ahorn ski area in Mayrhofen. The “leisure mountain” is perfect for families and for the first ski day of the season. We drive straight to the cable car station, and, as we are nice and early, have no problems finding a parking space. We put on our ski boots and head for the ticket office where we buy our day passes and stash them safely in our ski jackets.
We go through the turnstile and walk into the waiting cable car. We’re hardly alone, however, as Austria’s largest cable car has space for 160 people. As we are transported up the mountain, we can see some of the 5.5km home run below us. After considerable snowfall the night before, the piste conditions look amazing. I would even go as far as to describe it as chocolate-box perfect. When we reach the top station, we clip into our skis and enjoy the fantastic views. It’s at moments like this that I feel really lucky to live in such a beautiful place.
Enthusiastically, we start off down the first of four blue pistes which are ideal for families. We’re all excited to reach the new “Funslope”, but the children are especially keen to see if it delivers what its name promises.
After the first few runs, we have all found our ski legs. Skis, poles, arms and legs are soon working together as if we haven’t just had a six month break from the sport. For us adults skiing is like riding a bicycle, and our children, who have been skiing since the age of three, soon rediscover their technique.
After our warm-up, we try out the obstacle course that is the “Funslope”. The sectioned-off piste is actually fairly flat but has small hills, wave runs, steep turns and bowls which make it great fun to ski. The children love it, and we adults also enjoy conquering the various obstacles. We head immediately back up the drag lift to do it again…and again…and again!
Soon, the skiing has made us hungry and thirsty so we take a break to enjoy some good food and a refreshing drink. Re-energised from lunch, we ski the red piste to the Ebenwald lift. The run is fantastic and so we plan to end our ski day by skiing the long black piste back to the valley.
Chilling out at the White Lounge
Around three o’clock, our tired legs start to feel the kilometers of piste that we have skied today. We head to the White Lounge to relax together in the sun loungers with a coffee, hot chocolate and well-deserved piece of cake. For those who don’t know, the White Lounge is an igloo hotel where you can stay overnight at an altitude of 2000m! With chill-out music in the background, we lie back and enjoy doing nothing, just taking in the beautiful views.
At about 4pm, after reapplying our sun cream and thoroughly relaxed, we decide to head for the home run. We take our time skiing don the 5.5km back to the valley. When we arrive exhausted but happy, we look back up at the Ahorn, our heads filled with memories of a great first ski day of the season.