FINALLY! Winter is here! Innsbruck has had its first snowfalls down to the city, the temperatures are sinking too, and the first ski resorts (Axamer Lizum and Kühtai) have opened for the season. It is finally time to bust out the skis and snowboards and get on the slopes!

For the first – but hopefully not last – time SnowFest came to Innsbruck. SnowFest is a celebration of all things winter sports, right in the heart of the city, with everything from professional freestyle ski and snowboard competitions to an exhibition village and facilities to try different winter sports for the first time

Snowboarding, skiing, bobsleding, ski jumping, curling – and so much more – all right there for visitors and locals to try without further travel.


Directly in front of the Tiroler Landestheater, SnowFest built a ramp and rail set up for the professional competition. Innsbruck has already seen some snowfall to the city this winter, but none of it has stuck around for very long yet. So the organisers brought in the snow collected during the regular snow clearing work from the streets and car parks in Sellraintal and around Axamer Lizum, a roughly 20 minute drive from the city. Nothing beats local snow – and real snow definitely beats artificial snow, both for the athletes and the environment. Bringing the snow to the city instead of taking the event to the mountains also saved a lot of travel emissions, as none of the equipment, exhibition stands or spectators had to make the journey up from the city.

SnowFest kicked off with the Freeski Friday competition on Friday, then continued with Rock a Rail for the snowboarders on Saturday, with the ramp open for public use on Sunday! What a weekend!


Skiers took center stage on Friday during the Freeski Friday comp, with big names in freeskiing like Max Moffat and Matej Svancer showing off their skills alongside local riders like Bernd Hager, Lukas Schlickenrieder and Luca Pichler.


The highlight of the weekend was the Rock a Rail contest on Saturday, with crazy action and impressive tricks! The premier SnowFest in Innsbruck was star studded! Big names of the street snowboarding scene were absolutely sending it, including legends Clemens Millauer, Anna Gasser and many more!


The Winter Sports Village showed off a wide range of winter sports to try out, through real equipment or simulators. Ever wonder what it is like to barrel down a track head first on a skeleton sled? Lay on the sled, pop on the VR goggles and have a go! Ever wonder what it is like to be a professional downhill skier? Jump on the simulator and find out if your legs can handle the bumps and turns … spoiler, it’s really strenuous! The village was especially fun for the children I saw running around! There was a small ramp to simulate a ski jump. Kids picked out boots, skis and then got to take a small jump. Kids could also jump on a snowboard and be pulled around obstacles, getting an introduction to snowboard parks. You could try out curling, take your shot with a hockey stick and much more!

Innsbruck celebrated its first SnowFest, here’s hoping it was not the last!

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