New Trip! – Early season ski touring in the Tyrol region of Austria, based in the mountain city of Innsbruck. This is one of the best locations in the Alps for accessing a wide variety of ski tours and major resorts within a short daily drive. Regular flights, easy transfers and high altitude glacier skiing all make for a straight forward and reliable trip.
Please visit our Covid-19 Ski Information page for Covid FAQs, details of our new participation requirements, travel advice and what to expect on your trip.
The Tyrol region of Austria is home to many internationally famous resorts and several classic multi day ski tours. However, it’s less well known that there’s also a huge variety of excellent early season day touring in the region. Using Innsbruck as a central base allows quick access to hundreds of great day tours across the region, as well as several high altitude glacier resorts nearby, which provide snow sure conditions throughout the winter.
This is an intermediate level trip. To take part you should be at Fitness Level 2-3 and Tech Level 3 (see our Fitness/Experience guidelines below) and have some alpine day touring experience. You must be able to handle all off piste conditions whilst carrying a day touring sac. The trip includes 5-6 hour days with typically 700-1000m of ascent a day, at ~300m per hour ascent rate – so you can expect to be skinning for 3-4 hours a day. Type of ascent: 70-100% skinning on this tour – approx. 6000m of skinning up 6-9000m of skiing down.
One IFMGA guide skiing with 6 clients, or 2 guides skiing with 8 clients.
Included in price
- 6 days of guiding
- All guides expenses
- 7 nights hotel accommodation, including breakfast and evening meal.
- Transport during the trip
Excluded from price (see course factsheet for extra cost estimates)
- Drinks and Hill Snacks
- Flights to Innsbruck
- Airport Transfer
- Equipment hire
During the week we stay at a comfortable hotel in Innsbruck, lying close to a huge selection of local tours and major ski resorts. The hotel provides good standard rooms, with an excellent breakfast and evening meal.
Hotel rooms are provided on a twin sharing basis, but if you wish to book a single room please let us know and we will confirm availability. Hotel details can be found on our Accommodation page.
Fly from Uk to Innsbruck. Evening Briefing – your guide will run through kit checks and safety routines, before going on to discuss the current weather and mountain conditions and how these affect our plans.
Sunday – Friday
Ski Touring in Tyrol
- A great variety of local tours are available within an hours drive of our accommodation.
- Lift assisted tours, starting at local ski stations.
- Great off piste terrain for storm days.
- Lots of open north facing terrain, skiing in alpine meadows.
- Plenty of good, mid altitude ski summits.
- Higher, more technical terrain along the Austrian border
Early morning to airport for flights home.
Your trip starts and finishes in Innsbruck, the most convenient access point for touring in this part of Austria, on the doorstep of the Stubai, Hohe Tauern, Otztal and Silvretta ranges. The most convenient way to reach Innsbruck in winter is fly directly to the city airport, then take a short shuttle bus journey to our hotel. Alternatively fly into Salzburg or Zurich and catch the train to Innsbruck.
After a comfortable stay in Innsbruck, a private taxi transfer gives quick access to the mountains to start the tour.
Flights and transfers
- Fly to Innsbruck: check Sky Scanner website for best options.
- Shuttle bus into town: www.innsbruck-airport.com/en/train-bus
- Or, fly to Salzburg or Zurich.
- Train from there to Innsbruck: www.oebb.at/en/ (excellent Austrian integrated train/bus timetable)
- Alternatively hire a car at any airport: www.arguscarhire.com / www.holidayautos.co.uk
For flights and other travel options, including train, coach and driving, visit our Travel Planning page.
To enjoy this trip you should be comfortable operating at Fitness Level 2/3, and Ski Tech Level 3:
Fitness Level 2
You do 2-3 hours cv training/sport per week. At this level you should be happy doing either a 3-4 hr hillwalk, cycling 30-40 miles or mountain biking 2-3 hours without being exhausted. On foot: you should be able to walk from Ogwen Cottage in North Wales up Glyder Fach – Glyder Fawr – Y Garn – Ogwen in ~5hrs. Or in the Lake District Langdale – Bowfell – Esk Pike – Angle Tarn – Langdale in ~ 6hrs. On skis: you are capable of off piste skiing all day or doing a couple of hours skinning with out finishing up exhausted – ie you can do this for a number of days without taking a rest day.
Fitness Level 3
You do 3-4 hours cv training/sport per week. At this level you are happy doing a 5-6 hr hillwalk, 40-50ml cycle or 3-4hr mountain bike ride without being totally exhausted. If you are into challenges – then the thought of doing a road sportive, or training to do a 1/2 (or maybe even a full) marathon, wouldn’t seem too ridiculous. On foot: you should be able to do the full Langdale Horseshoe: Langdale – Pike of Stickle – Angle Tarn – Bow Fell – Crinkle Crags – Pike of Blisco – Langdale in a day without finishing up exhausted. On skis: you can skin uphill at 300-400m/hr for 3-4 hrs a day (ie 8-1200m of ascent each day)
Tech Level 3
Confirmed Off Piste Skier. You can put down a reasonable set of tracks in powder, but difficult snow types – eg heavy wet snow, crusts, poor visibility or 40dg slopes – can all cause problems (though you can cope with them safely, if not elegantly!) *Equivalent to Ski Club of GB Off Piste Level: Purple – Advanced*
Likely to say: ‘I’d like to handle difficult snow/steep slopes more confidently in better style’
Our Advice: Off piste coaching still useful. Intermediate off piste weeks are at your level too. If you want to get into ski touring, try a touring course or intro level ski tour. If you’re an established ski mountaineer, then intermediate level tours are generally suitable.
To view all of our Ski Fitness Levels and Off Piste Technical Levels, please visit our Ski Ability page.
If you need to top up your fitness for this trip, please see our Ski Touring Training Advice page.
Day Touring/BC Ski Course Equipment List
Just remember, every extra kilo on your back knocks 10% off your enjoyment on the descents – so try and keep the weight down!
- Waterproof Jacket – preferably lightweight and breathable
- Overtrousers/ski pants – preferably with side zips
- Fleece mid layer or equivalent
- Spare fleece or lightweight insulated duvet jacket
- Socks – specialist ski socks or a warm loop lined pair of mountain socks
- Wicking thermal top – not cotton please…
- Thermal leggings or ski pants
- Thin inner gloves
- Warm ski gloves or mittens, if you suffer from cold hands
- Warm hat
- Water container – at least 1 litre
- Personal medications and blister kit – regular meds, zinc oxide tape, compeed and painkillers etc
- Ski goggles
- Sun glasses – CE rated 3 or 4 with side protection
- Sun and lip cream – factor 30+
- Wallet, passport and insurance docs
- Rucsac 25/35l – try and avoid ones covered in too many features, just ski and ice axe attachments required
- Freeride boots or ski mountaineering boots – check detailed factsheet kit list for preferred boots
- Skis with touring bindings – check detailed factsheet kit list for preferred skis and bindings
- Ski strap – to keep skis together on your rucksack if we need to carry them
- Ski poles – with good size 5cm+ baskets (telescopic poles are not needed)
- Climbing skins – they come with the skis if you hire your kit
- Harscheisen (ski crampons) – they come with the skis if you hire your kit
- Metal snow shovel – must be a full metal shovel (plastic blades don’t work in real avalanche debris!)
- Avalanche probe
- Avalanche transceiver – must be a modern digital model (older analogue models are now obsolete)
- Harness, with 120cm sling and locking karabiner
- Crampons – bring them if you have them
- Ice Axe – bring if you have one
- Ski helmet – a lightweight helmet is recommended for off piste skiing
Your guide will have all other safety kit, first aid and survival equipment.
Recommendations and Advice
Visit the Knowledge Base section of our website, where we publish an annual review of the years best new skis, boots and touring equipment, plus a range of other interesting tips and recommendations. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, please get in touch!
Please visit our Equipment Hire page for recommended hire shops in your resort, and Alpine Guides hire equipment price list.