Freeriders are drawn to open terrain like a magnet. This trend, which is spurred on by new products from the ski industry aimed squarely at this target group, is something you can clearly feel in Gastein as well. “The ski route is marked appropriately, but it is not maintained or inspected by our local piste officials. The only level of control and determination of whether the route remains open or not, is based on avalanche threat conditions”, says Franz Schafflinger from the Gastein Lift Company.
The ski route runs from the Schlossalm to Angertal Valley. It begins right by the mountain lift station of the Kaserebenbahn and takes skiers via the former Katstall piste towards Angertal. This means that, depending on snow and weather conditions, winter sports fans will also be able to ride down a deep-snow or a moguls run.
“We absolutely want to do keep pace with that trend, but matters of safety and personal responsibility still have to remain a top priority”, states Schafflinger. “As a consequence, and similar to the Kreuzkogel in Sportgastein, we have created an info base close to the mountain terminal of the Kaserebenbahn, designed to provide skiers with all the relevant information they need about snow and safety.”
“Our goal is to steer freeriders on a somewhat ‘regulated track’. For everyone simply to ski off willy-nilly, without thinking of others, is simply not what it’s all about. That is why we are consciously supporting the campaign launched by Salzburg province under the motto “Respect your limits”, which includes, for example, designating reforestation land and wildlife feeding areas as exclusion zones that are absolutely taboo”, adds Schafflinger.
For advanced Freerider, Sportgastein is THE place to be!
Safety advice: All marked skiing routes in Sportgastein are neither prepared nor checked, but are protected against avalanches. Outside of the routes you are in a free skiing area, acting on one's own responsibility and beyond the liability area of the cable car company!