Has the summer lockdown got you feeling the heat?
Typically, when people find the sweltering temperatures of July really cooking their brains from the inside out, those who can escape to colder alpine climes. However, the lockdown and advice against unnecessary foreign travel means that winter escapes to the Swiss Alps are no longer feasible.
That doesn’t mean that the experience of snow-capped mountains and pristine valleys are completely beyond reach, however. To help get you into a skiing mindset, many of the best ski resorts have set up live cams so those who can’t yet reach them can still enjoy the sights of the best peaks on the planet.
While no true substitute for the real feel of cold powder beneath your skis, it may be just enough to help sate any longing for the mountains.
Visit these selected ski live cams, and for a moment escape the hot summer sun for the frosty powders of the world’s favourite ski destinations.
Located within the Nevada Mountains – which confusingly are found in California – June Mountain is touted as the state’s favourite family ski resort. As such it offers slopes that vary from easy glides great for beginners, to more challenging drops for the seasoned skier. Further it has many resorts catering to all kinds of groups, from families, to single enthusiasts, to young or experienced couples.
The largest ski resort within the canton, Arosa Lenzerheide was formed as a merger of two ski resorts back in 2014. Featuring 140miles of ski track and over 43 cable cars, it makes for a fantastic Alpine ski trip. Winter sports enthusiasts are drawn from all over to its plentiful slopes, all of which offer only the best of Swiss skiing.
Saas Fee is more of a resort village than strictly a winter sports resort, and as well as skiing provides ample hiking, Alpine spas and local food and crafts for its visitors. The village of Saas Fee is warm and welcoming, featuring traditional Swiss architecture alongside more modern conveniences at some of the more recently built resorts. While the skiing is still fantastic, it provides a more rounded and varied destination for those looking for a Swiss adventure.
Le Massif de Charlevoix is aptly named – it has one of the highest drops of any ski slope in Eastern Canada at a vertigo-inducing 2,526ft (770m). Vast panoramic views of the Quebecois landscape can be seen from this eastern edge of the Rocky Mountains, while mountain chateaus provide a sample of rustic Canadian hospitality.
Largely regarded as one of the USA’s most popular ski resorts, Aspen is unique for its more rustic and traditional approach to skiing. Established during the earliest days of skiing within Colorado, it still maintains much of the bespoke culture and traditions that it inherited from these years when skiing holidays were still finding their legs. With its dazzling Rocky Mountain views, excellent facilities and reclusive atmosphere, there’s a reason it continues to draw countless skiers each year.
Located within the Italian heart of the Austrian Alps, Großglockner is Austria’s highest peak and one of its most popular destinations for skiers across the country, the continent, and the globe. Popular with families it provides picturesque views of East Tirol, its whitecapped slopes beautiful during all seasons of the year. As well as exciting ski adventures, South Tirol is also worth visiting for its unique blend of Austro-German and Italian cultures, which offers sights and experiences equally as memorable as the slopes.
Overlooking June Lake and Carson Peak, the Haven is very suitably named as it offers a quiet retreat from the hectic days of ski and spray. A short mile and a half from the main ski areas of June Mountain, the Haven consists of handsome two-bedroom lodges with kitchens, Wi-Fi, indoor jacuzzies and cable TV.
Wooden stoves and fireplaces make the accommodations of the Haven a true American retreat, giving guests a taste of the old frontier life without needing to give up the better comforts of the 21st century.
A five-star hotel with an emphasis on quality comfort, the Walliserhof was recently reopened with great fanfare after a refurbishment in 2019. Whether its guests seek exhilarating slopes, free spirited bike rides or lazy afternoons at its spa, the hotel has it covered.
Rooms are rustic and comfortable, mixing traditional Swiss styles with more modern flares. Suites with an adjoining lounge and bathroom with bathtub are also available.
With a glorious view of the St Lawrence River and constructed in a fairy-tale chateauesque style, the Hotel Fairmont is just a short drive away from the Le Massif ski resort. Mixing Quebecois elegance and charm with all the modern conveniences of a 21st century hotel, it offers airy and comfortable rooms with fine dining and excellent services.
A wide array of activities such as golfing, spas, city trips and rock climbing are also provided by or near the hotel, ensuring your stay is never boring.
We may be in lockdown right now but it won’t last forever – which of the slopes are you most keen to visit once you're free to travel again?