Ski resorts in Czechia facing uncertain season due to record high energy prices
While the Ještěd ski resort in the north of Czechia started making artificial snow this week in preparation for the winter season, other ski centres around the country are facing the prospect of a shorter season or are closing down altogether.
The decision of the Ještěd ski resort to switch on the snow cannons amid the current energy crisis has drawn a number of negative comments from the public.
Artificial snow production presents one of the highest costs for ski operators as it is requires large amounts of power. As a result, many are currently weighing the costs of making artificial snow.
The management of the Červenohorské sedlo ski resort in the Jeseníky Mountains in the north-east of the country is still deciding whether to rely on natural snow, which may mean starting later and shutting down earlier, or shoulder the extra cost.
“For the last ten years, we have not been able to start the season without snow guns, which is economically not viable for us at the moment,” manager of the resort, Martin Dubský, told Czech Radio.
“We usually switch on the snow cannons in December, but the price capping will not happen until January, which may affect the length of the season.
“We will only make artificial snow if the temperatures are acceptable. It makes a difference whether you switch them on at -4 or at -9 degrees Celsius.”
Other mountain resorts, including Boží Dar in Krušné Hory or Dolní Lomná in Beskydy are planning to tackle the rising energy costs by upping their prices.