Europe... the continent of many countries. So many that it is difficult to ski all of them... but on Christmas break I was able to visit Croatia, and finally ski its nice ski areas. What a wonderful experience to ski on mountains towering above the Adriatic Sea, sunshine, powder...
The first ski area that I hit was Sljeme, just outside Zagreb. This ski area sits on the 1035 meter Medvenica mountain above Zagreb. A curvy, lonely road leads to the mountain. I started driving in what felt like a rainy, cloudy fall afternoon. By the time that I got to the top, I was in full-blown snowstorm, and worried about the ability of my car to navigate the snow that was piling on the road. But I finally found the ski area, and was able to park.
The only problem was that the ski area had just closed. Fortunately, they would open for evening skiing in two hours, so I sat down for a dinner at the restaurant at the top, and waited.
Once the ski area opened, it was great! Not big, and only 300 meters of vertical, but they have run World Cup races here. It also turned out that there had been a gondola that would have allowed me to bypass the gnarly road. However, it broke down in 2007 and is being replaced by a new one that is scheduled to open in 2018. One would hope... that's a long repair wait.
I also realised later that in this area there would have been an interesting cave, Veternica, a 2.6km cave with tours for tourists. I wish I had realised earlier that a visit in a cave was an option...
But I was already on my way to Platak, a ski area with a similar 263-meter vertical difference, but located in what felt a much more mountainous area, with the peak being at 1363 meters. And, most importantly, there's a view to the Adriatic Sea from the slopes! I really liked this ski area, and the recently fallen foot of fresh powder made it even nicer. Nobody seemed to have skied the forests and areas between slopes, so I had a lot of fun for myself.
Pictures from Sljeme are below. First, there's a link tower at the top of the mountain. In the snowstorm it looked wonderful:
I also ate at the restaurant at the top, while waiting for the ski lifts to open for the evening. This is a picture of the restaurant window:
Pictures from Platak are below:
This blog article is also available on TGR. Tämä blogi löytyy myös suomeksi Relaasta. Photos and videos (c) 2017 by Jari Arkko. All rights reserved. The song "Royal" is by Josh Lippi and The Overtimers, and is freely available from YouTube music library.