Snowcard's roving (carbon friendly) reporter Freddie D considers the Snow Train for his next visit to the Alps -
We are currently experiencing the reality that global warming is happening and is happening fast. This autumn we are being told that 2023 has seen more months where temperatures exceeded the 1.5% marker that the world is using as the target to reduce the impact of carbon emissions.
For winter sports lovers, we have seen season lengths reducing for a number of years now. We often don’t see good snowfall until Christmas and the traditional premiere snow weekend at the beginning of December is the privilege of only a few high resorts. Late season snow has become patchy, heavy and wet. Late Easters no longer attract late season last minute bookings like they used to.
Henry’s Avalanche Talk has recently written a blog looking at how climate change is affecting off piste snow conditions. Whilst the messages are mixed, we are now in a reality where we can no longer take for granted perfect powder conditions as mixed wet and warm weather creeps into traditional cold winters where snow conditions were easier to predict.
With the current focus strongly on global warming and what we can do as individuals to make changes to our carbon foot print, it is natural that skiers and boarders will be thinking about how they can help keep snow on the mountains and contribute to what is clearly now a shared global climate change dilemma.
The online magazine In The Snow has recently bogged on this very subject and has examined low carbon travel.
Apparently some 50% of travel companies are now offering rail travel as an option to help reduce carbon foot prints and a free map showing rail routes to the European Alps has been produced. On The Snow report that flights t the Alps are almost back to pre pandemic levels which raises the question, how popular can rail travel become?
Ski by rail experts SnowCarbon promote rail travel as being faster than plane, less queues, stunning scenery and a more fun and relaxing experience for short haul European travel. There is a new service being offered by Eurostar for a dedicated ski train which should encourage the carbon conscious to give it a try but without a doubt, train travel is better for the planet, will be more sustainable and offers a better overall journey and, more time on the slopes!
Sounds like an all round winner to the Snowcard team!
Rail ski map designed by David Cooper, provided by SnowCarbon