Anyone who is used to the Alps and its supreme ski resorts might hardly think of any decent alternatives to this king of the skiing world. However, Siberia with its pristine nature and impressive mountain ranges can undoubtedly guarantee skiing holidays with a difference. With no lack of snow and decent infrastructure, Siberian winter resorts offer great value and provide some of Russia's best slopes. Read on to see the top picks from Siberia.
Sheregesh, in the south of the Kemerovskaya Oblast, is one of the most unrivalled ski resorts in Western Siberia. Located 26 km away from the city of Tashtagol, it can be reached from the airport of either Barnaul or Novokuznetsk or Novosibirsk. Home to an annual Grelka Fest - a massive group riding in the bikini – Sheregesh is also known for its soft powder snow and powder skiing.
Dense forest prevents avalanches, whereas the signage is sufficient and clear. Lift facilities vary from chairlifts and platter pulls to gondola lifts. The resort is good for beginners, but it also has off-piste trails, terrain park’s features, and a freestyle area. There are about 15 trails with a maximum elevation of 630 m. Special services include rental points with equipment, instructors, snow tubing and snowmobiling, spa zones, nightclubs, cafes, and multiple hotels.
Just three hours from Irkutsk, passing by Baikal Lake, Gora Sobolinaya has varied and extensive skiing with 15 km of comfortable pistes and a maximum elevation of 470 m. Located conveniently not far from the city of Baikalsk, the resort is easy to reach, both from Irkutsk and Ulan-Ude. Highlights are night riding sessions and the terrain park with two hills. Lift facilities include chair cable cars, platter pulls, and two lifts for kids. It is suitable for beginners but also has advanced uncrowded slopes. Current capacity is 1 500 – 2 000 visitors per day.
This resort annually hosts regional, federal, and international ski and snowboarding events. Although in the summertime, this place doesn't stand empty either. Last June, it became home to a massive Grill Fest that gathered guests from all across Siberia. Visitors could try different meat delicacies and participate in various contests. There are three hotels with all modern conveniences designed for 315 people.
With 10 km of pistes, the Bobrovy Log ski resort, on the edge of the picturesque Krasnoyarsk Stolby Nature Reserve – a UNESCO World Heritage Natural Site, offers inexpensive and convenient skiing. Located within the city of Krasnoyarsk, the resort is easy to reach - visitors can take a branded bus from the main railroad station. Although no hotels are available around the lifts, there is a big choice of accommodation in the city itself.
Two four-seat chair lifts and two two-seat platter pulls take you to the top of one of the Vostochny Sayan Mountains’ spurs. Some pistes offer night riding, whilst seven pistes are certified according to the requirements of the International Ski Federation. A one-day lift pass – 10 uphills – costs 840 rubles on weekdays and 1200 rubles on weekends.
Either you’re a solo traveler looking for fun skiing or a pro seeking for an unusual competition, top picks from Siberia will definitely grant you skiing holidays with a difference.
Cover photo © credits to iStock/kav38
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