Slippery slope: Alpine resorts shut across Europe as soaring temperatures leave holidaymakers with snow-less pistes

3 January 2023, 16:12 | Updated: 3 January 2023, 16:19

A growing number of low altitude resorts across Europe - notably France and Switzerland - have been forced to close due to the heatwave.
A growing number of low altitude resorts across Europe - notably France and Switzerland - have been forced to close due to the heatwave. Picture: Getty / Maddie Wilson

By Danielle DeWolfe

Skiers across Europe have been forced to swap snow for mud following a month of unseasonably warm temperatures, as half of all French ski resorts shut due to a lack of snow.

Images uploaded by holidaymakers across Europe depict green rolling hills rather than crisp white pistes, with many resorts located at lower altitudes forced to shut down entirely.

It's raised doubts over next weekend's ski World Cup, with the course currently consisting of muddy slopes.

Temperatures in Switzerland hit a record 20C on New Year's Day - the highest ever recorded temperature north of the Alps in January.

No new snowfall and soaring temperatures of between 10 and 20 degrees have seen ski slopes across France hold crisis talks, as the winter heatwave continues to sweep Europe.

At least seven countries have now seen their warmest January since weather records first began, including Denmark, the Netherlands and the Czech Republic.

Tourists across Europe have had their winter ski plans halted after high temperatures melt snow
Tourists across Europe have had their winter ski plans halted after high temperatures melt snow. Picture: Credit: Maddie Wilson
FRANCE-TOURISM-WEATHER
FRANCE-TOURISM-WEATHER. Picture: Getty

Read more: Yellow weather alerts issued for ice in northern England and Scotland

Read more: Met Office issues yellow weather warnings for ice with Brits cautioned over icy surfaces and injury risk

One Swiss resort, Adelboden, located in South West Switzerland, saw the mercury soar to record temperatures, even remaining above freezing at 6,500ft.

At one point the thermostat even reached as high as 15 degrees (59F).

It's but the latest evidence illustrating the impact of the planet's rising average temperatures.

And while some holidaymakers made it to their resorts before discovering the lack of powder, many ski resorts in France closed altogether, leaving many family's plans in tatters.

Tourists across Europe have had their winter ski plans halted after high temperatures melt snow
Tourists across Europe have had their winter ski plans halted after high temperatures melt snow. Picture: Credit: Maddie Wilson
TOPSHOT-FRANCE-TOURISM-WEATHER
TOPSHOT-FRANCE-TOURISM-WEATHER. Picture: Getty

Switzerland and France are believed to be among the worst affected regions, with grassy terrain visible across popular holiday spots including Innsbruck in Austria, Villars-sur-Ollon and and Germany's Lenggries

The Swiss resort of Splugen-Tambo is but the latest victim of the current heatwave, yesterday recording the warmest New Years Day on record.

Concerns have also been raised due to unsafe skiing conditions, with doctors reporting the same number of admissions due to skiing falls as they would normally receive at the height of Easter.

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Assange was released from Belmarsh Prison in London on Monday

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange leaves UK after being freed in US plea deal

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has reached a plea deal.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will not be extradited to US after reaching plea deal

Princess Anne is reportedly unable to remember what happened due to the nature of the injury.

Princess Anne ‘unable to recall exactly what happened’ after being ‘hit by horse’ as she faces several days in hospital

England have qualified for the last 16 at Euro 2024.

England qualify for last 16 at Euro 2024 after Spain beat Albania

Rishi Sunak criticised Labour's proposed plans to tackle migration rates in the UK.

UK would be ‘illegal migration capital of world’ under Labour, Sunak says as he sets out plans to ‘stop the boats’

Labour has made cutting knife crime a 'moral mission' should the party come to power

Labour makes cutting knife crime a 'moral mission' as Starmer proposes new child criminal exploitation offence

Spanish police are investigating if Jay's 'background' is relevant to the disappearance.

Spanish police searching for Jay Slater investigate if teenager’s background is ‘relevant’ to his disappearance

Lord Kinnock has said he would not wish being part of the current Tory government on his 'most bloodthirsty enemies'.

‘I wish I was fighting this lot’, ex-Labour leader Lord Kinnock says as he brands current Tory party 'superficial'

The president of Finland has said he 'doesn't agree with many things' Nigel Farage says in response to his comments on the war in Ukraine.

'Absolutely not': Finland's president dismisses Nigel Farage’s claim that Nato provoked Russia's war in Ukraine

A man went missing in the water off Bournemouth beach (file image)

Huge search operation launched for man missing in water off Bournemouth beach

Bosses face £1,000 fine for letting employees watch England's Euros clash with Denmark in the office

Offices showing England v Slovenia Euros clash could face hefty £1,000 fine

Princess Anne has been injured by a horse

King Charles sends 'fondest love’ to Princess Anne who will ‘quickly bounce back’ after being hit by horse

Callum the stag was "humanely euthanised".

Tourists blamed for death of 'legendary' stag after it was fed Rice Krispies and croissants

The Reform UK leader's comments came as he spoke to supporters at a rally in Kent on Tuesday, slamming the current government's ability to control immigration.

Farage warns of Channel migrant 'invasion' from countries 'with terrorism, gang culture and war zones'

Gavin Plumb is accused of plotting to kidnap Holly Willoughby

Obsessed security guard ‘plotted to keep Holly Willoughby in dungeon where screams couldn't be heard for miles'

At least two people have died in the fire

At least two dead as Moscow defence research centre bursts into flames ‘with staff trapped inside’