Snow Carving in San Vigilio

12 January, 2019 – 8:13 pm

We flew into Innsbruck on Tuesday afternoon, the weather was overcast and snowy and the mountains looked incredible.

There had been heavy snowfall and we were lucky as the airport was shut the day before.

We took the train from Innsbruck to Brunico through the Alps, there was so much snow and beautiful cloud reaching mountain peaks. The sky was clearing and there was some blue sky and sunshine. When the wind blew the snow flurried off the mountain sides and there were columns of icicles hanging from every visible rock.

Once we reached the border between Austria and Italy the snow began to clear, there were lorries and cars, transporters loaded with new vehicles.
Unlike the UK there is no snow on the road and life carries on as normal but when there is this much snow and ice they are prepared for it.

We had to make a change at Fortezza for our train to Brunico, we were running late due to some checks that were carried out at the border and had a 30 minute wait for the next train, it was getting dark at this point and there was little or no snow. 
Travelling with the quantity of luggage we have is a tricky process, not only do we need enough warm clothing to protect us in sub-zero temperatures but also all of our tools for hacking and carving the snow. The chain with the bolts through for sawing the snow weighs 3kg on it’s own.

We were welcomed to the Hotel Majarei in San Vigilio Di Marebbe and shown our home for the week, a beautiful apartment with delicately painted doors, sturdy Austrian wooden furniture and ornately decorated balconies and most importantly comfy beds.

On Tuesday morning we were welcomed in the town for our pre-carving briefing and the block picking, we were no. 5 so right in the middle which was great, The snow was created artificially (but just water) as there had been no snowfall. It was great quality and shone blue. They are 10 metres cubed.
We had the Serbian team on one side and one of the Italian teams on the other.

Once we had drawn the design on the surface, the first job was to saw the 4 corners off, like chopping a tree we hacked in underneath so once we were through it would fall off. The next job was to cut the corners off the corners to create the sphere. More difficult that it sounds on this scale. The hand developed gradually along with the curve of the sphere.

The tools we use are a mixture of gardening implements, sharp metal chisel like tools and sanding blocks made out of old cheese graters.

Here are the final finishing photos from our carving and some of the other teams.

The view from the road of all the carvings and the view from our apartment balconies

We are off to San Candido next to carve our next snow sculpture, loosely inspired by the 3 wise monkeys. We have 3 more days and the winners will be announced on Wednesday evening.

If you would like to see more up to the minute photos you can follow our progress on my facebook page. 


Post a Comment