by Volker Hasse

St. Nicholas Day saw the start of the winter program 2008/09 „Schnee moves“ in Germany’s largest skiing region, the Allgaeu Tyrol mountains, crossing the borders to the Austrian region Kleinwalsertal.
Our skiing weekend started out with a relaxed breakfast at home in Berlin (it could have just as well begun in Hamburg or Cologne, though), because, thanks to TUIfly, we touched down on the alpine slope Memmingen after about one hour. The small airport offered swift and friendly check-out service followed by a transfer to the two-country skiing region.
In the truest sense of this trip’s slogan, „in the blink of an eye“, and on time for lunch, we sat at the restaurant on Kanzelwand at an altitude of 1900 meters and could as well have sat in the 2,224 meters high Nebelhorn panorama restaurant, for with our „top slope package“ we had booked not only the stay at the hotel and the bus trip to the cable car station, but also the skiing pass for the total of 120 slope kilometers.
The landscape was a dream, the snow conditions perfect (season from December 6 to April 27) and in the region’s marketing network we were awaited by 39 mountain railways, 223 ski lifts and 550 kilometers of slope, including Germany’s longest continuous valley run, spanning an outstanding 7.5 km from Nebelhorn to Oberstdorf. We were spoiled for choice, but there was an appropriate offer for every difficulty category of skiers, snowboarders, freeridge and mogul slope experts.
Speaking of offers: 200 km of signposted snow promenades were cleared and secured for non-skiers. Fun parks offer cool fun in the snow for the whole family. We tested the wide, high-quality range of offers by NTC Parks at Nebelhorn with Airboard, Snowfox, Snowbike and Snowscoot and were so thrilled that it got to be our favorite topic during the following Après-Ski party.
Seeing the various offers available to the kids, one might just wish to be back to being one. 20 skiing schools across the super snow region help children playfully discover the fun to skiing while at the same time acquiring the necessary skills. Seasoned youths with the required amount of courage and a lack of vertigo can make the dream of flying come true in the ski-jump school of Oberstdorf. With professional guidance, participants slowly move forward from endurance exercises over posture and inrun crouch to, finally, jumping techniques. Jumps are taken off of the K19, allowing for distances of 5 to 19 meters.
Winter golf in Kleinwalsertal is proceeding much more peacefully, although teeing off of groomed snow is a real challenge itself. The snowy mountainscape around makes for a special atmosphere, and since the greens are not green, but glowing snow-white, the balls are colored.
Children with sparkling eyes and much delight are guaranteed by the program „Easter bunny in the snow“ from April 4 to 18 in Oberstdorf.
As city dwellers, we were so exhausted from so much fresh air, sportive activity and overwhelming landscape by the evening that we gratefully made use of the offers of the hotel business with „Top & Landhotels“, including their quality brand „Host with Heart“ and their WellVital offer. We will stay longer next time!
Photo Benjamin Lauffer

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