Swiss weekend snow and winter sports report, 3-5 February

Pack your thermal underwear!

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – We’re heading for the slopes shortly, so this will be short and sweet: a great weekend of skiing and snowboarding is out that for those who are ready to brave the cold.

Weather forecast, avalanche conditions, snow depth

Snow whipped off rooftops and swirled around village streets near Lake Geneva, Friday morning

From now until Tuesday: sunny skies with icy temperatures. Everywhere. Wild winds that are already whipping up Lake Geneva are likely to continue through the weekend, “adding to the impression of fierce cold”, says the national weather service, MeteoSwiss.

Temperatures of -10Cwith a high of -8 in Geneva Friday will keep falling, to -12 with a high of -6 by Sunday, and only -7 Tuesday.

Southern Alps areas and the Jura will be some of the cold spots, with La Chaux-de-fonds and Zermatt having overnight lows of -21C Saturday.

Strong winds, up to 55 and 65 kph over the weekend will build in strength, reaching 75kph in many areas and 95kph in Eastern Switzerland at the start of next week.

Snow depth

Small amounts of new snow have fallen in most mountain areas in the past three days. The depth at 2,000 metres throughout the Alps remains more than 200cm and will remain that way given the cold spell. The depth in the Jura is 20-50cm even at 1,200metres.

Avalanche risks are relatively low, 2/5 in most areas except northern Ticino, where it is 3/5.

Jura report

by Shirley Curran

Although the snow conditions are superb, it is extremely cold up on our local hills and the temperatures are due to drop every day until Sunday when we might expect a very slight rise, from the predicted -20C to minus 17! The bise wind is due to strengthen.

If you enjoy feathery light snow and extremely cold weather, this is the time to head for the Jura – but wrap up well and plan lots of stops for hot wine or hot chocolate. The cold is fearsome! As always, I recommend that you check the webcams and the website at before you load up the car.

Alps report: sun and cold weather should provide some perfect skiing, but check resorts for wind closings before you head out, given that the wind is likely to pick up as the weekend goes on. Check our previous winter weekend snow and winter sports reports for links to a number of resorts.