Our main resort is Katschberg / Aineck which we are at the foot of and when the snow is right you can ski virtually to our door. It is two mountains joined at the pass by a ski bridge over the road, so you can ski both sides without taking off your skis. They have around 70 km's of runs, (not counting any off piste), and include one of the longest runs in Austria, the 6km A1. Most runs here are blue and red but all are interesting and by no means the 'motorway' style runs you can find elsewhere. With generally quiet runs you can really ski the lines you want not the ones you are forced to ski by others. Like Obertauren but smaller Katschberg is a purpose built resort, the apres ski life here is very groovy plus this season they are running the ski buses later so you can get home and still enjoy the apres. Just make sure you are back in time for dinner or the chef will NOT be impressed and you might end up eating beans on toast. Although saying that on certain evenings from 19:00 to 22:00 you can do night time skiing under a flood-lit piste, it is great fun and a must do event.
The highest, and most well known resort in the Lungau region is Obertauern. It’s large, purpose-built, fab snow and is exactly what you would invisage a big resort to be. Very French Alps / Tirol style. As such it’s popular, therefore busy at times. Saying that though it is very much worth skiing as with 100km of runs all set in a giant natural basin, you can spend the day skiing around in a big natural circle – never skiing the same run twice. It is known as the Tauern Rund, which is unique in the whole of the Alps. You can ski both clockwise (follow the red signs) or anticlockwise (green signs), eventually finishing where you started to complete the Super Seven Loop. The scenery is stunning and some of the runs are pretty darn steep! Experts can head to the Gamsleiten No. 2 – one of the steepest mogul runs in Europe. Due to the resort’s height and mountain make up, the Obertauern ski lifts are open from the end of November right through until the beginning of May. Obertauern is a 25 minute drive away from us but for the hard core or those that want to see a different style of mountain it is no distance really and well worth it.
Speiereck and Grosseck is the resort that you can see from the chalet. You can easily spot the new bright yellow gondola going up the mountain from our garden and balconies. With easy access having the bus stop at our front door, a short bus ride will take you to the brand new lift complex / sky bar which take you up to Speiereck. The mountain, via other lifts, tops out at 2,400 metres. The resort has 50 km's of runs which sounds small but it really isn't and it includes some great and long runs (9km) down to the valley floor (red and blue) on the St.Michael side and the same on the Mauterndorf side. The off-piste here is again fantastic and once at the top it is skiable in pretty much every direction, (check with the lift ops or hire a guide before venturing off the beaten track). The restaurants on the mountain are incredibly good value, (especially compared to France, Italy and Switzerland), and the food is both varied with traditional and local options, great for kids and delicious. Try some of the local specialities you'll not only enjoy the flavours but also the dishes they are served in. It's not all sausage and beer you know!
Lastly and by no means least we have Fanningberg. As it is the smallest in terms of runs, 30 km's, you could be forgiven if you thought to favour the slightly larger areas, but that would be a shame as it’s well worth a visit. The main pistes are long, tree-lined and often uncrowded and it’s very hard to get lost, as most runs lead home, making it a great place to take a big group. Serving Fanningberg’s main run is one of the longest 6-seater chairlifts in Austria. At 2.1km in length, 500 metres in height and carrying 100 chairs, the Samson-Bahn is named after one of Lungau’s favourite biblical heroes, there is a big festival dedicated to him in the Summer, and makes skiing here very straightforward, efficient, stress-free and fun. It goes without saying that the scenery is lovely and the mountain huts carry on the good practice of being good value and great places to be in.
The area is also very well known in touring circles as there are loads of routes far from the normal groomed slopes.If you click on the the pictures above they will open the Lungau touring page which has loads of good info and advice plus lots of routes in PDF format to download. A comprehensive guide book to the ski touring in the area is also available to buy, although only in Greman at the moment. We would recommend hiring a guide or even taking a course. Do not be under any illusions, there are no lifts its all leg power on the ups and for that matter on the downs to! This is true ski touring country. You can do several types of trips such as overnight Hut to Hut tours and before dawn assents to see the sun rise over the mountains.
So all in all if you are a skier or a boarder, or want to be, then its a bit of a no brainer... you will love it here!
For the cross country skiers there is a route a minutes walk from the front door which forms part of the 26 different routes totalling 200km of trails. There are several high level trails on each of the mountains so the season is as long as the downhill one.
Enough of all that obvious stuff what about if you don't want to mess about on planks or a glorified tea tray! Fancy a day off doing something else or want something to do before or after dinner?
Fear not click below to see some of the other activties available.