25. July 2018

How is artificial snow made?


As soon as the winter season approaches, we look spellbound at the weather forecast. When will the first snow come? Is it cold enough that the snow also remains? Are the conditions right for artificial snowmaking? It can often be a bit of a race against time to make sure all the slopes and parks are prepared for you in time. But how does a snowmaking system actually work? We will gladly reveal this to you on the basis of our Gasti snow park.


Artificial snow wants to – and should – imitate natural snow. The system sprays the finest water droplets into the cold winter air. A part evaporates and extracts heat from the environment. This allows the other part to freeze and fall to the ground as small ice crystals – artificial snow is created. In fact, it only needs water and air. So artificial snow has absolutely nothing to do with chemicals or unnecessary environmental pollution. Since technical aids are used, we now also like to speak of “technical snow”, as this term clears up any misunderstandings.

To produce technical snow, water is finely atomized in the nozzles of snow cannons and snow lances and flung out. In order for the heat extraction process described above to work efficiently, the air temperature must not exceed max. -4 °C and the water temperature max. +2 °C. At the same time, the humidity must be below 80%. In other words, the drier the air is and the cooler the water and air are, the better the production of technical snow works.


Many years ago, the Ski School Dorfgastein invested in its own snowmaking system to ensure a punctual start to the season. Thanks to modern snow lances from the Swiss company Bächler, we can start making snow for our children’s area as early as November. The energy-efficient snow lance system is one of the quietest snow guns in the world. The new nozzle technology consumes significantly less compressed air, copes with high water temperatures without any problems, and can start producing snow as early as 2 °C earlier. This means that within six days there is already enough technical snow for the entire Gasti snow park – ideal if things get tight.

With the best piste and snow conditions, it’s not just kids who feel right at home at the Ski School Dorfgastein Holleis. Have you become curious? Book your ski course and get the all-round carefree package for fun on the slopes in the Dorfgastein-Großarltal ski area!

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