I finally made it to the Nassfeld Ski Area yesterday, a sprawling alpine wonderland considered one of Austria’s ten best ski resorts. I can’t speak directly to that, but have no reason to doubt that assessment. It was bar none the best place I’ve ever skied.
As I’ve mentioned before, my primary skiing missions these days involve positioning myself in the most beautiful surroundings possible, winter landscapes that are difficult to experience otherwise. Enjoying it on skis is an added bonus. Nassfeld’s almost impossible beauty manages all that, while providing a fabulous skiing experience as well.
Named after a pass in the Carnic (Karnische) Alps that connects Italy and Austria (see map below), it’s located just north of the border up from the village of Tropolach, where the base station of the ski area’s Millennium Express gondola is located; at 6km the Millennium Express is Austria’s longest, and the second longest in the Alps.
The setting is stunning, dominated by Rosskofel/Monte Cavallo (2,240m/7,349ft) to the south, Gartnerkofel (2,195m/7,201ft) to the east and Trogkofel (2,280m/7,480ft) to the west. The views are sensational in all directions within the ski area, with several additional outward panoramas and vistas to be enjoyed, especially towards the south from Troghöhe and to the east and southeast from a lift station midway up Gartnerkofel. Plenty of photos below. I can’t wait to return to take more.
Nassfeld Ski Area: the Nitty and the Gritty
- 30 lifts: five gondola cable cars, five six-seat chairlifts, four four-seat chairlifts, 10 T-lifts
- 110km of trails: 11km difficult (black), 69 intermediate (red) and 30km easy (blue)
- Hours: Lifts run daily from 9:00am – 4:15pm; the Millennium Express (valley floor to near highest peak) from 8:30am to 4:45pm
- Rates: High season (25 Dec thru 25 Mar) day pass €46/adults, €37 youth/seniors, €23 children. Half day and other options available. All rates here.
- Website: http://www.nassfeld.at/en
- Rooms and accommodation in Tröpolach and Hermagor (via Booking.com)
And to get your bearings:
Below is the rest of this 21-image gallery, presented in the order they were taken. I missed the best light of the day, some pretty decent golden hour hues which began to appear about 90 minutes before sunset. It was getting too cold for my camera, which refused to take any more pictures. At least now I know where its temperature threshold sits.
Above view to the west/southwest from the central Kofelplatz gondola station (1,919m/6,295ft); below a view of Trogkofel (2,280m/7,480ft) to the west from Kofelplatz.
View north from Kofelplatz.
Facing west from a trail just below the Rudnigsattel gondola station, another gondola rising behind Schnittlauchkofel (2,004m/6,574m).
To the right in the next two images is Gartnerkofel (2,195m/7,201ft), a dramatic peak that rises to the east of the ski area, one that often figures prominently in most of Nassfeld’s marketing materials. In the third below the mountain is on the left.
Same view as above, framed a bit closer.
Trogtal behind a gondola bound for the Troghöhe saddle (info below).
From the Carnia run at the ski area’s northwestern edge. Above a view due north and below facing south.
The next three were taken from Troghöhe (2,020m/ 6,627ft), a saddle at the top of its eponymous cable car station. The first two face west/southwest, with roughly speaking the left half situated in Italy and right half Austria. The third is a wall of Trogkofel (2,280m/ 7,480ft) which dominates the ski area to the west.
Protip: If you’ll be walking around in your ski boots like I did, don’t get too close to the edge (like I nearly did.)
Here’s a panoramic shot of this area; if the scroll won’t work for you here, it will if you click through to the image on Facebook.
The next three, a few more shots of Gartnerkofel.
Taken from roughly midway down the Carnia trail, at 7.6km (4.8mi) the area’s longest. This may be Kammleitn (1,955m/6,414ft), but I’m not sure. As always, confirmation and insight is most welcome.
And one final shot of Gartnerkofel later in the day.
The final two shots before my camera locked up: from the lift station that drops you off below the peak of Gartnerkofel, facing east/ southeast.