Unseasonably warm weather in the Alps has put snow holidays in doubt as the Ski World Cup prepares to host the tournament on artificial snow.

And a besieged ski holiday booking company has been slammed for refusing to budge on cancellation policies due to a lack of snow at resorts in the Alps.

Early January snow depth is below average across the region, which is of particular concern In Adelboden, Switzerland, where the FIS Alpine Ski World Cup is due to take place over the weekend.

Course director Tony Hadi said organizers had no choice but to hold the race on artificial ice this year.

He said: ‘The climate is changing a bit but what should we do here? Shall we stop with life?’

Snow depths are below average for early January across the region, with particular concern in Adelboden, Switzerland, where the FIS Alpine Ski World Cup is due to take place over the weekend.

Course director Tony Hadi said organizers had no choice but to hold the race on artificial ice this year

Course director Tony Hadi said organizers had no choice but to hold the race on artificial ice this year

The same area was covered with white slopes for the competition on January 8 last year

The same area was covered with white slopes for the competition on January 8 last year

Similarly, there was enough snow for the tournament in 2021 (pictured)

Similarly, there was enough snow for the tournament in 2021 (pictured)

A weather station in Delémont, the capital of the Swiss state of Jura, recorded an average daily temperature of 18.1C (65F) on the first day of the year, 2.5C higher than the previous January record.

MeteoSuisse said in a blog post: ‘This turn of the new year might make you almost forget it’s the height of winter.’

while it is forecast to snow Experts say it is unlikely that will be enough to reopen all affected pistes until Sunday afternoon and on the slopes until Monday.

Crystal Ski Holidays has been inundated with messages from confused and angry customers due to fly off for the holiday this week, as a result of the lack of snow.

Many are asking to amend their bookings to allow them to travel when there is more snow on the slopes.

This slope near Schladming, Austria is one of several slopes with less snow than normal for this time of year

This slope near Schladming, Austria is one of several slopes with less snow than normal for this time of year

Heavy snowfall is expected in the coming days in the higher reaches of the Alps, but there is concern that there will not be enough snow to reach the lower slopes

Heavy snowfall is expected in the coming days in the higher reaches of the Alps, but there is concern that there will not be enough snow to reach the lower slopes

But the company is using forecasts of a change in weather to justify its decision not to allow any modifications on the upcoming holidays.

Pressed by a customer regarding a booked ski trip to Bulgaria, a spokesperson said: ‘We understand your frustration but the decision is based on the forecast and information received from the resort.

‘We are very hopeful that conditions will be improved for skiing next week.’

A Weather to Ski report said today: ‘More than one big storm is needed to get things running properly, especially in the worst affected areas.’

And disappointed customers have also reported that the forecasts indicate a slight improvement, but not necessarily enough to get their money’s worth.

A spokeswoman for Crystal Ski in Bulgaria said the resort team is “confident that temperatures are dropping and it should be cold enough for snow cannons,” with snowfall added until next week.

While snow is forecast to fall on the slopes on Sunday afternoon and into Monday, experts say it is unlikely there will be enough to reopen all affected pistes.

While snow is forecast to fall on the slopes on Sunday afternoon and into Monday, experts say it is unlikely there will be enough to reopen all affected pistes.

The Alps are currently experiencing unprecedented warm winter temperatures and early January snow depths are below average across the region.  Image: People skiing on a cross country slope in Ramsau, Austria

The Alps are currently experiencing unprecedented warm winter temperatures and early January snow depths are below average across the region. Image: People skiing on a cross country slope in Ramsau, Austria

Skiers descend a slope in an otherwise snowless part of Schladming, Austria

Skiers descend a slope in an otherwise snowless part of Schladming, Austria

But customers have claimed that when they called the resort itself, no such assurance could be given regarding the use of artificial snow.

The company offers a ‘Snow Promise’ which states: ‘If the snow lets you down, we’ll do everything we can to get you on the slopes at another resort.’

But the guarantee comes with terms and conditions that stipulate that your resort must have no snow and that the mountain must be completely closed.

In cases where short pistes are still open, or if a small amount of snow is falling, the company is under no obligation to fulfill the guarantee.

Right now the most affected areas are in the northwestern Alps, below about 1,600 metres.

There, natural snow cover is currently extremely poor.

Some runs are still open in Grindelwald, Megève, the Grand Massif, Leysin, Gstaad, La Cluse, Wengen and Villars, while Morzine is offering two smaller runs.

Crystal Ski Holidays has been inundated with messages from confused and angry customers due to fly to destinations across Europe for ski holidays this week.  Many are asking to amend their bookings to allow them to travel when there is more snow on the slopes

Crystal Ski Holidays has been inundated with messages from confused and angry customers due to fly to destinations across Europe for ski holidays this week. Many are asking to amend their bookings to allow them to travel when there is more snow on the slopes

People ride a cable car over a ski track without snow on Bjelasnica mountain near Sarajevo, Bosnia

People ride a cable car over a ski track without snow on Bjelasnica mountain near Sarajevo, Bosnia

Resorts higher in the mountains don’t have much problems with snow and routes are open, although they are under increasing pressure as guests from lower areas are trekking up for day trips.

Heavy snowfall is expected in most French, Italian and Swiss resorts.

A spokesman for Crystal Skis, part of Tui, said: ‘We know that the resorts in Bulgaria are not seeing the snow conditions that we would expect at this time of year.

‘Both our teams on the ground and our suppliers have been closely monitoring the situation over the past few weeks to ensure our customers are updated as soon as possible if the weather is going to affect their travel.

‘For customers traveling to Bulgarian resorts this weekend, ski trips will go ahead as planned as the weather is set to improve in the coming days, with snow forecast during the week and a drop in temperatures that will allow artificial snow Will allow the use of make. facilities.’

How much snow is expected to fall in the Alps in the coming days?

Some areas of the Alps are expected to receive more than 50 cm of snow from Sunday.

from alpine meteorologist Fraser Wilkin, weather to skisaid: ‘The much-anticipated storm will hit the Alps on Sunday and/or Monday, bringing varying amounts of snow to all regions.’

Between 20-40 cm by the end of Monday across a wide swath of the Alps above 1800m, 50 cm+ in places, with the heaviest snow generally expected to fall at higher altitudes in the northern French Alps.

‘The snow from this storm probably won’t be enough to bring the low-lying areas of the northwestern Alps, which have lost most or all of their snow (eg the Samoans, Les Gets) back on track, but it’s a It is the beginning.

Temperature will also play a key role in determining whether the snow sticks – or if the progress is quickly washed away by rain.

The ski resort of Saint Gervais in the northern Alps, France, closed some of its ski trails due to mild weather

The ski resort of Saint Gervais in the northern Alps, France, closed some of its ski trails due to mild weather

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