Kaunertal Glacier Ski Area

Kaunertal Glacier Ski Resort Trail Map – Click on to Enlarge

Kaunertal glacier is fun and funky, it’s a high elevation ski area tucked deep up in a canyon in Austria’s Tyrol, 30 exciting minutes past the cute rural town of Kaunertal. The access road alone is black diamond, super scenic as you pass a large dam, its remote, with narrow tight switchbacks. As you reach the upper mountain, impressive peaks tower in all directions.

Kauntertal ski area sits between 2150 to 3160-meters (7,806-11,598’) so the snow is typically very good. With guaranteed snow from October till June, you can fully make the most of every one of the 55 kilometers of pistes. The impressive glaciated Weissspitz towers above the rest at 3535-meters, always in view from Kaunertal ski resort.

We suggest you park at the first lot, boot up and load the quad here if you have your tickets, better than driving more crazy winding roads all the way up to the gondola and tram base. This lower mountain bubble quad, with a middle station, takes you up to the rest of the lifts on a high plateau, and the main parking and Lodge.

Kaunertal, pronounced, like countertop, has so many different aspects. It’s confusing at first. from mid-mountain, you have two gondolas, a tram and two T-Bars all servicing different terrain. From the top of the Falginjoch Tram and Karlesjoch gondola you have spectacular views into Italy. You are perched on the border!

Most of Kaunertal’s slopes are not particularly steep, with a few exceptions. A dozen intermediate trails wind down the mountain from two peaks. Kaunertal is home to one very steep trail – the Black Ibex trail reached by the tram is 87.85 % grade – proclaimed the steepest slope in Austria, even steeper than the Harakiri at Mountopolis at Mayrhofen. We skied it, it was well-groomed and didn’t seem that dauting.

Kaunertal has plenty of off-piste for free riders, but beware, there are also lots of dangers – this is glacier terrain with cliffs, crevasses and snow holes. Also, in many places, Kaunteral’s terrain flattens out, or leads to the ravines and valleys. The whole mountain has lots of knolls and valleys, and flats.

Hire a guide if you visit Kaunertal on a powder day, to explore the bounty of unmarked terrain safely. There is also cat-skiing on certain days to access free-riding terrain.

Don’t miss the 170 meter-long Vroni ski tunnel from the Karlesjoch gondola! Its expert terrain, the Steinbockwand Passage is a black piste from the gondola summit to a ski route, not groomed but marked, back to the lower mountain quad base with a vertical drop of 1100 meters (3,609’), it’s the ski resort’s longest descent.

Kaunertal has just one big lodge restaurant, mid-mountain, called the Gletscher Restaurants, which doesn’t have the charming Austrian hut vibe, but its very centrally located with a big sun deck.

Kaunteral makes for a fun ski day, especially if its sunny and has recently snowed. It would be difficult visibility in fog or heavy snow as you are entirely above tree line – its a white-out. Kaunertal is a sister ski resort to Fendels ski area, and also Pitztal Glacier and Nauders. These Austrian ski resorts are all on the Snow Card Tirol.

Where to stay
Hotel Feichtner Hof activhotel in Kaunertall is a perfect place to stay when skiing Kaunertal for a few days. This beautiful recently-renovated hotel is in the heart of this quaint alpine town. The views up the valley are pretty and pastoral so ask for a balcony. The hotel is ideal for couples but also family-friendly with a kids play room. There’s even a beginner T-Bar and one slope right outside the hotel. Our suite was luxurious with alpine mod appointments and a grand balcony. Our half board included an afternoon snack plus a splendid 5 course evening dinner, and large buffet breakfast spread. The hotel’s bar and lounge is cozy and fun, with a living room fireplace, with real crackling logs on fire each evening. There’s a wellness oasis spa downstairs with Finnish sauna, steam, and infrared.  The Larcher family are lovely, and from Hotel Feichtner Hof you are an easy walk to the little village Spar and ski shops, or catch the bus up to Kaunertal Glacier 30 minutes away.

Kaunertal Glacier Ski Stats:
Base Elevation: 2150  ( 7,806)
Summit Elevation: 3160 meters (11,598’)
Vertical: 1100-meters (3,609’)
Lifts: 8
Trails: 55 km of prepared pistes
Ski Routes: 36 km
Unlimited off-piste adventures – Hire a guide

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