Temperature fluctuations in the Alps lead to strange sights on the ski slopes. There, deep cracks develop as a result of rain and wet snow, as on a slope in St. Anton am Arlberg, Austria. The ski slope was closed immediately.
At the beginning of December, a noticeable amount of snow fell in many places in Europe. This led to an excellent and early start to the ski season, especially in the higher areas. But last week, much of the Alps received a noticeable amount of rain. The snow line often stays above 2,000 metres, meaning heavy rain falls below.
This also happened on this ski slope in Kabale, in the St. Anton am Arlberg ski area. Explains an expert in the local newspaper Tiroler Tageszeitung Snow becomes very heavy when rain falls on it. The weight can then cause thick layers of snow to move, causing cracks. This shows how much snow there is already, but also shows that the surface has not yet been provided with an ice layer.
Such cracks are common in mountains, but they rarely occur on a slope as prepared as this. A spokesman for the ski area said: “The hole was discovered on Saturday evening and the slope was immediately closed.”
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