What is forecast to be the biggest snowfall of 2024 so far is getting underway in the Alps, with snow also falling in the Dolomites and Pyrenees.

The snow is expected to keep falling in many areas through the weekend but there have been reports of up to 60cm (two feet) already on high slopes for some areas during the last 24 hours.

Among the big winners so far are Italy's Cervinia posting 40cm (16") and Livigno with 32cm (13") as well as Passo Tonale, pictured below. In France Bonneval-sur-Arc posted 30cm (12") and Les Carroz 28cm (11"). Austria's Axamer Lizum has had 25cm (10"), Serfaus Fiss Ladis 20cm (8"), but Switzerland has seen the biggest falls with 60cm (2 feet) for Glacier 3000 near Gstaad (pictured above), which opened at 11am today to allow staff to dig out lifts and make runs safe.

The snowfall is naturally much greater on higher slopes, Val d'Isère advising it received 12cm (5") in resort over the last 24 hours, 27 cm (11") at altitude. St Anton posted images of rather wet looking snow in resort (below).

The snowfall means that off-piste conditions are good to excellent for the first time in weeks at many areas. But avalanche expert Henry Schniewind of Henry's Avalanche Talk (HAT) warned earlier this week that...
"...for the next precipitation event (snow forecast for the later part of the week for example), things will become very-extremely unstable on North'ish facing slopes above 1800m or so."