Warm in Soelden with a forecast for snow
It is warm in Soelden where the 2013 World Cup of ski racing is scheduled to begin Saturday (Oct. 27); Shirt sleeve warm. Tee-shirt and shorts warm. Without a cloud in the sky.
High above the village, the Rettenbach Glacier has already received its first dusting of snow, and the local are quick to note, more is due this weekend. Forecasts indicate the first race of the season is likely to be held in a snowstorm.
As of yet there is no sign of a storm. Up on the Rettenbach, well over 4,000 feet higher than the river through Soelden village, huge tractors have begun to slide sections of stadium seating into place and a handful of spectators waited for training racers to slide by, hoping for an autograph.
The U.S. Team, chief among those training on site this early in the week, has had an additional twist thrown into its logistics planning as a rock slide - with one particularly large boulder - having blocked passage to their Soelden headquarters, an apartment complex in neighboring Zwieselstein. Though one lane is still passable, the road has been closed at 7pm to allow work crews to remove the rock.
The game is still on, however, and Soelden is beginning to gear up for an onslaught of teams, media and fans. By Friday night the streets will be flooded with fans as the bib draw takes place in the center of town. -HM