News from the snow
Finkenberg is a moderately sized Tyrolean village in the stunning Zillertal Alps with a long ski and tourism tradition. Located within the Zillertal nature park, the village has just over 1500 year round inhabitants, but they include Olympic champion Leonhard Stock in their number! Professor Peter Habeler, the first person to climb Mount Everest without an oxygen mask, is another local. The village is situated about three kilometres south-west of Mayrhofen and 200m above the River Ziller on a generally sunny, gently inclining terrace of the Tuxertal area. The highest mountain in the Zillertal Alps, the Hochfeiler (3510 m), is part of the widely spread community which stretches to the Italian border. In skiing terms, Finkenberg is located in the centre of the Ski and Glacierworld Zillertal 3000 ski area which runs from neighbouring Mayrhofen over to the year-round snowfields of the Hintertux glacier. Ski and Glacier World Zillertal 3000 is the largest single ski region within Austria's beautiful Ziller Valley; although anyone staying more than three days may well wish to purchase the full Zilley Valley lift pass which covers all the ski areas in the region and is one of the world's 20 biggest lift pass areas with nearly 800km (500 mils) of trails in total. Most of Zillertal 3000 is connected by a modern lift network, but a bus link is required between Finkenberg and the Tux glacier lifts. The village has a long history. In ancient times the Rhaeto-Romans drove their livestock herds to the Alpine pastures of the Zillergrund and the Tuxertal from the south across the Pfitscher Joch. The church, built in 1721 and dedicated to Saint Leonhard, contains early baroque stucco works. The Teufelsbrücke (Devil's Bridge), built in 1876, is a rare example of old Tyrolean woodworking. It spans the deep ravine through which the Tuxer Bach passes. The Teufelsbrücke reputedly got its name when the locals farmers, lacking the technical skills to build a footbridge over the deep ravine at Dornauhof, called on the Devil to help. He agreed to do the job if the locals handed over the first soul to cross the bridge after it was built. The canny farmers agreed to this but when the bridge was done, sent an unfortunate goat over first. Needless to say Satan wasn't happy and rode off into the air with the goat - followed by gales of laughter from the Finkenberg farmers.
A pretty village, with traditional large chalet style hotels, surrounded by the stunning scenery of the Ziller Valley. It shares access to the Penken mountain skiing with Mayrhofen, but is more keen to promote its partnership with Tux, as well as Mayrhofen, in the Ski and Glacierworld 3000 ski area which is mostly lift-linked togrether, except for a Bus to the base of the Tux glacier lifts. It is also on the giant Zillertaler SuperSkipass
Thanks to state-of-the-art snow making facilities covering 196 hectares of runs, skiing conditions are guaranteed so long as tempratures are low enough. A free shuttle, operating from early October, takes guests to the Hintertux glacier (14km/nine miles away).
The ascent on the Glacier Bus 3 lift takes you up to 3250m. From here there are plenty of options including the Tuxer Fernerhaus, the Sommerbergalm and then the long runs down the breathtaking 12km (seven miles) descent into the valley.
Throughout the area there are many wide pistes suitable for cruising, ideal for intermediates. There are also specific circuit recommendations, useful for getting to know the largest ski area in the Ziller Valley. These include the glacier circuit with 72km (45 miles) of ski runs with a total of 15,000m in altitude difference. This trail runs from the Eggalm to the sunny Rastkogel plateau, and on to the breathtakingly panoramic descent.
Advanced skiers and boarders will enjoy the trails beneath the pylons of the Schneekar chair where the steep rolling piste provides a good challenge. The Harakiri descent is the steepest groomed piste in Austria and is only recommended for really excellent riders. There are also very good free-ride opportunities available here.
Three permanent, free race-tracks with timers provide an excellent opportunity for challenging family or friends.
The mountains around Finkenberg are also a paradise for ski mountaineers. Enthusists can walk through secluded forests and long slopes past quaint mountain huts all the way up to the peaks. Then there is the unique feeling of floating down virgin powder runs. Finkenberg's mountain guides can help guests safely discover the beauty of this experience.
If that sounds too much like hard work there are more than thirty rustic ski huts, on-mountain inns and après-ski bars in the area to check out.
In the evenings there's special kids´ aprés ski and a wave pool to check out.
For young children Wuppy's Kinderland in Mayrhofen, is located by the fun pool and only three kilometres (two miles) away is a kindergarten and day nursery for children from three months to seven years of age. It's opening Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Wuppy's also rents out push chairs, cots and carry-cots.
The restaurant "Landgasthof Persal" is a good example of a typical Tyrolian guesthouse serving traditional local food in a dining room in the Tyrolian style. A second recommendation is the "Hotel Neuwirt," a rustic Tyrolian guest house also serving traditional food.
The Finkennest is like a theme bar with Tequila night on Mondays, Happy hours on Tuesdays, table dancing on other nights and so on.