The white gold

It may well be that guests and winter sports enthusiasts are little or not at all aware of the currency that winter sports resorts have been relying on for years. The white gold, i.e. snow. Those who have enough of it have decisive advantages over their competitors. Because without this element, winter sports are almost unthinkable.

It is a phenomenon of the times that the basis for ski slopes comes more than ever from the nozzle. Also in Engelberg. But this machine-produced snow is not all the same. There are very big differences and above all one thing - a lot of experience. Anyone who thinks that pressing the start button is enough to produce snow is in for a disappointment. And there is no course on how to do it. Either you can do it or you can't. Knowledge and experience are everything when it comes to machine-made snow. The lower the temperatures, the better the quality of the white gold produced with air and water. Once the snowmaking equipment has been put into operation, regular inspections are obligatory. The trained eye of a good snowmaker can see immediately whether the granularity is right. Good quality snow facilitates the subsequent maintenance of the ski slopes and Cross-country ski trails. for this reason, the Engelberg snowmakers are always out and about when the locals and guests retire later in the evening after having enjoyed the cosy warmth and comfort of home to the full. Being a snowmaker is definitely not a job for people who are not resistant to the cold. And they usually only finish work when night gives way to day again.

Whether or not a winter sports station like Engelberg has facilities for the production of technical snow has long since become an economic factor. No other sport is as closely linked to nature as winter sports. That is why developers have invested extremely heavily in recent years in increasing the efficiency of all components of a snowmaking system and continuously optimising the careful use of naturally available resources. Not least thanks to the use of intelligent snowmaking systems, the energy balance has been significantly improved. Engelberg's mountain railway operators know the importance of an intact natural environment. Their investments in the use of the best possible and most environmentally friendly equipment for the production of the white gold that is so economically valuable today were correspondingly large.


Beat Christen

Pictures: Engelberg-Titlis mountain railways