A growing number of Australia's ski areas will open a week earlier than planned, this coming weekend, for the 2022 ski season.
The move follows a huge pre-season snowstorm that has so far dumped up to 60cm (two feet) of snow on the countries slopes and is still ongoing. Clear weather expected at the weekend means that this could be one of the best season openings in the country in years.
Nathan Butterworth Mt Hotham Skiing Company General Manager said, "It's been a magical week here in Hotham! We've watched the resort transition from green to white and I'm thrilled to be able to bring the season opening forward and welcome guests back to what is very special part of Victoria."
Perisher was the first to announce their early opening yesterday, with Mt Buller, Falls Creek and Hotham announcing today that they'll be opening early too. More ski areas may follow suit.
The mood in Australia is upbeat after two winters largely lost to pandemic lockdowns, as with much of the southern hemisphere this will be the first winter since 2019 when, hopefully, pandemic restrictions will be minimal in ski resorts and its possible for international guests to visit again – although various travel restrictions and requirements remain in place.
Richard Phillips – Falls Creek Ski Lifts General Manager said "The first snowfalls of winter are always a special, but this has been amazing. We are incredibly excited to be opening early this season and seeing the Falls Creek village and community deliver he special experiences we are famous for".
The southern hemisphere's 2022 ski season is due to start on Friday with first the Happy Valley beginners and snow fun area due to open at Whakapapa on Mt Ruapehu in New Zealand and then Afriski in Lesotho Southern Africa planning to open, thank to snowmaking efforts.