French ski resort Tignes has just announced it won’t be opening the French 2019-20 ski season this weekend as planned, as snow conditions on the glacier aren’t yet good enough. It’s the second autumn in a row the resort has missed it’s usual opening date and it’s target of offering snowsports every month of the year.
Tignes, which used to be open for snowsports year round in the final decades of the last century, has issued a strong statement about the decision on its website this morning:
“Global warming and its repercussions are more relevant than ever, with Tignes witnessing first hand these effects upon its mountain domain: record temperatures seen throughout Europe this summer and over the previous few weeks have particularly affected the Grande Motte glacier.
By the end of this September, we can only lament over the degraded snow conditions, which do not offer the optimal training conditions required for skiers, clubs or snow sports professionals, who traditionally take to their skis in Tignes as from the month of October.
Our privileged position as a witness to these events, together with the special importance the resort places on its glacier, implies our natural adherence to environmental initiatives undertaken throughout the world.
Consequently, the Société des Téléphériques de la Grande Motte, the Régie des Pistes and the Town Counsel of Tignes have taken the joint decision to postpone the opening of the Grande Motte ski area (initially planned for the 28th September) in order to continue their protection efforts on the glacier. Future snowfall will determine the date of the autumnal opening of this domain.”
Tignes was open for summer skiing this year but closed in late July rather than staying open in to August as it had planned, due to the extreme summer heat.
It still has the longest season in France however with all other resorts in the country not usually starting their seasons until the latter half of November.