Snow and ice on the Zugspitze: According to a spokeswoman, there has not been so much snow at the start of the season since 2007
Photo: Angelika Warmuth / dpa
Slippery, white landscapes, the start of the ski season: December 1 is probably clichéd wintry in many places in Germany. At the meteorological beginning of winter it was cold in many places and in the south and southeast as well as at higher altitudes it was already white. At the weekend, however, the temperatures will be a little frostier, according to the forecast of the German Weather Service (DWD).
The winter weather has consequences for roads, railways and airports. More than 150 take-offs and landings have been cancelled at Munich Airport due to the weather. The reasons for this are snowfall and low temperatures at the airport, according to a spokesman. It is expected that about 160 flights will not be able to take off or land. At least one runway should remain free at all times. Accordingly, the lanes are cleared alternately. Passengers are asked to check with their airline about any cancellations.
In southern Germany, there were dozens of accidents due to snowfall and slippery roads during the night to Friday and in the morning. Several people were injured. A total of seven people were injured in an accident on the Autobahn 81 near Mundelsheim in Baden-Württemberg near Ludwigsburg, four of whom were seriously injured. A 33-year-old driver had lost control of his vehicle and crashed several times into the median barrier. As a result, three cars were also involved in the accident.
In parts of Lower Bavaria, snowfall has hampered rail traffic. After the restrictions in the Waldbahn network, the lines of the Upper Palatinate Railway - especially around Cham - are now also affected, the state railway announced in the evening. Planned trips should definitely be postponed up to and including Saturday. In the region, rail traffic is cancelled in some places without replacement. "A rail replacement service with buses cannot be guaranteed, as the storm-like snowfalls also lead to massive restrictions on the roads," it said. Further weather-related restrictions are also to be expected during the night and on Saturday. You can read here what conclusions the current cold wave allows for the winter.
Ski season started in many places
The calendrical or astronomical beginning of winter is only in three weeks – on 22 December. In meteorology, however, the entire months of December, January and February are winter. On Germany's highest mountain, the Zugspitze, the ski season began on Friday in fog. The first ski lifts also went into operation in the Sauerland after the early onset of winter, as well as in Oberhof in Thuringia - this is earlier than it has been for ten years, according to a ski lift operator of the ski lift in Thuringia.
Winter operations had already begun in the middle of the week with lifts in the Black Forest, followed a day later by the Söllereck in the Allgäu. The heavy snowfall in the past few days had shaken up the order a bit at the season opener. On Hesse's highest mountain, the Wasserkuppe, for example, skiing is scheduled to begin this Saturday.
On Saturday, the sun can only be seen in the north at times, otherwise the sky will be overcast or even very cloudy, according to the DWD. From the edge of the Alps to Lusatia, snow falls intermittently, sometimes heavily on the edge of the Alps and in the Alps. Temperatures range from minus five to zero degrees, and in the south and west they can easily slip into the plus range. With similar temperatures, it will stay mostly dry during the day on Sunday, and the sun will shine at times. Only in the north and east there may still be some snow locally.