Spring Skiing in Lech, Austria, 4-2014

Lech am Arlberg is arguably the most prestigious ski resort in the Alps. On one hand it is the Eldorado of deep powder snow, on the other a quiet winter Mecca where the royals and the super rich mingle undisturbed by paparazzi. To me it is a magical place where in the past I’ve rented an old hut without hot water and showers with twenty-five of my best friends every year, where I taught skiing as a student during holidays and semester breaks that enabled me to ski for 3 months every winter and I got paid doing it, where I’ve had countless deep powder free riding memories, where I came to every Christmas with my family when we lived in California, where I experienced the most amazing hospitality I’ve ever had on this planet, where I’ve got to know every single hotel owner in the many different places we stayed at, and where I still take friends from around the world because it is so special.

The ski area is connected with the neighboring towns of Warth and Zürs. A short ski bus ride away is the Alpe Rauz, from there a chairlift takes skiers into the area of St. Anton am Arlberg, which is in the neighboring state of Tyrol. A total of 94 cable cars and ski lifts create 340 km of groomed pistes and 200 km of deep powder runs. Modern skiing began here in the early 1900s with Hannes Schneider teaching his Arlberg technique.

IMG_4037The White Ring is the longest ski race in the world according to the Guinness Book of World Records. The race starts in Lech on top of the Rüfikopf and follows the ski run down to Zürs, the participants then take the lift up to the beginning of the Madloch, the infamous 5 km ski run down to Zug. A chair lift takes the entrants up the Kriegerhorn and the race course finishes back in Lech at the bottom of the Schlegelkopf.

 

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