When a new chair isn't universally popular - Schlick 2000, Innsbruck |

A fearsomely steep T-bar through shaded woods that dates from 1978 was uprooted and replaced by a 4-seater chairlift, this autumn in Schlick 2000, Innsbruck. So, what could be the problem?

The Problem? Schlick 2000 is the Stubai local's favoured off-piste spot and the old Kreuzjoch T-bar cut through some of its best tree-skiing. The pitches on the T-bar track were pretty wretched and it was one of the least favoured lifts for snowboarders anywhere. The gradients were mirrored by the adjacent downhill terrain and the routes through the trees are steep and sensational in good snow. But to easily access this bounty meant the lift from hell (or a whopping round-trip via mid-station) and that thinned the crowds considerably.

So along comes the Panorama 4 seater chairlift that whisks skiers and boarders over the steep pitches below and exits them at the entry point to the new Panoramaschuss black ski piste. Gone is the Kreuzjoch ski route of old, with its narrow chutes and fallen trees and in its place, are snow cannons and piste markers. For most the changes are excellent news with a new black piste and more snow security. But for locals, the soul skiing of the Kreuzjoch ski route and its neighbouring terrain was a bit of a throwback - hence its sanitisation is something to mourn.

Schlick 2000 is located just south of Innsbruck and offers a stunningly scenic ski area, some great off-piste and authentic mountain huts. The valley run offers a long descent and there is an excellent variety of gradients to tackle. Schlick 2000 is covered by the Innsbruck Olympia ski pass and should be on the radar for any groups visiting Innsbruck. Just spare a thought for those missing the rutted, near vertical, T-bar tracks through the woods.

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