Skiing at Above 1,500 Meters Only in the Future? – Ski Resorts of Serbia Say Not to Worry and Announce Development of Golija

Source: eKapija Tuesday, 27.02.2024. 12:43
(Photo: Luka Rilak)
The assumptions that, in the future, due to the high temperatures and the climate change, many ski resorts will turn to summer, instead of winter, tourism, which eKapija also reported about several days ago, do not pertain to our most famous ski resorts, all things considered. At least not in the cases of Kopaonik and Stara Planina, they say for eKapija at the PE Ski Resorts of Serbia.

Based on monitoring the temperatures and the number of snowy days for years, the projections in the article we recently published say that, in 50 years, in the tall Alps, the ski season could be expected to start at the end of December or the beginning of January, and it would end in March. Also, many ski centers at lower altitudes would simply withdraw from the market sooner or later.

Although, of course, they follow both the global and the national weather forecasts, at the Ski Resorts of Serbia, they are not so pessimistic and they believe that the last and the current seasons are the kind of phenomena that have happened in the past cyclically. As they say, such years happen each 5-6 years.

New ski track Bela reka 3

– For example, the year 2002 was such a year. On the other hand, the year 2019 is remembered as a year with a great amount of snowfall. Still, in general, there is an overall weather forecast which says that, in the future, skiing will take place on mountains above 1,500 meters. And our centers Kopaonik and Stara Planina meet that condition. However, even disregarding that, we constantly invest in artificial snow systems. For example, by next season, we will have finished the new ski tracks Bela reka 3, which will be covered by these systems. We will thereby enable less skilled skiers to also descend to Brzece – they announce at the Ski Resorts of Serbia.

They admit that the artificial snow system is not omnipotent and that there are also atmospheric conditions for it to work properly, and the Tornik center, unfortunately, often does not meet those conditions. The worst kind of a weather phenomenon for the artificial snow system is the south wind, which is very present on Tornik, according to the Ski Resorts. And it is precisely these days that Tornik does not have the conditions for the tracks to be covered with artificial snow.
(Photo: Luka Rilak)

– As for Kopaonik and Stara Planina, we work all the time there and most often at full capacity, although there have been fewer snowy days on Kopaonik this year and only around 45 cm of snow. And even that disappeared over the course of several hot waves. This means that our systems are working at full steam. Primarily in the center of the ski resorts and the busiest skiing bases, and then at other tracks as well. For example, this weekend, there were two international competitions on Kopaonik and Stara Planina – they say at the Ski Resorts.

A multitude of features for the summer season

Indeed, as is the case with all the ski destinations worldwide, our ski centers also strive to maintain the inflow of tourists throughout the year. That is why, over 10 years ago, investments in summer features started. Now, as a result of this, there are features on Kopaonik such as a summer ski (plastic) track, bobsled, zipline, adventure park, tubing, mountain cart, mountain cycling track, electric bicycle renting and panoramic gondola rides. On Tornik, for example, there are even more cycling lanes, as well as panoramic tours and a mini-golf course.

– Excluding a short period between the winter and the summer, when the checking and the servicing of all the systems are done, at these two centers, there’s almost no break. It is true that Stara Planina is no longer in the function of winter tourism, but the problem with Stara Planina is that the skiing capacities are bigger than the accommodation capacities, so there should be investments in accommodation capacities there – they say at the Ski Resorts and add that, at their centers, between the winter and the summer season, congress and sports tourism is developed, as are team building sessions.

New center – Golija

In line with the forecasts which say that, in the future, there will be skiing only on mountains above 1,500 m, but independent of them nevertheless, the plan of the Ski Resorts of Serbia is to develop another ski center – on Golija. This beautiful mountain location has not been selected for its height, they say, but for its good position and configuration of the terrain and also, in general, for the purpose of improving ski tourism in Serbia.

Golija is the highest mountain in southwest Serbia, with an area of 75,138 ha. It spreads across the areas of five municipalities, and its slopes are extremely suitable for skiing, because it is very snowy in the winter.

As eKapija wrote earlier, the Ski Resorts of Serbia opened the public procurement of the technical documentation for the development of the Golija ski center with projects of the Development of the PE Ski Resorts of Serbia slightly over a year ago.

As said in the technical specification of the tender, according to the current Detailed Regulation Plan for the Golija Ski Center, in the territory of the municipality of Ivanjica, an area of 262.67 ha is to be developed within the zone of the planned ski resort and a part of the tourism unit Odvracenica on Golija, because this area is set as the most suitable location for the initial development of tourism in the area of the mountain Golija.

According to the existing plan, as explained at the time, only ski tracks and ski lifts are envisaged, whereas other ski features are not complete, so the technical documentation needs to be done for the construction of the planned ski resort Golija with various functions and features.

The plan includes the construction of a hotel and a restaurant, the management building of the ski resort, a hangar and the skiing infrastructure – new ski tracks, an artificial snow system for all ski tracks and ski roads, ski lifts, gondolas, ski training grounds and summer features, as well as an education center.

The forming of the start and end hubs of the ski resort with entrances and ski terminals is planned, as is public utility infrastructure – the construction of streets, waterworks, sewer, electrical and TT installations.

The gondola with an interstation, as said, will start at the ski plateau at an altitude of 1,680 m, in close proximity to the existing parking lot, and end at the highest point of the ski resort.

A bobsled structure, as well as a children’s playground, will be designed and built for the animation of the guests in the summer period according to this plan.

Danijela Stanimirovic-Gavrilov

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