A journey through time in pictures

Fertile ground on which to plant a vision for the future

A vision for the future was precisely what mountaineer Hans Theato had in mind as he gazed into the horizon from the peaks of Hochfügen at the end of the 1950s. Having already recognised the potential of this high valley basin as the ideal location for a ski resort for all abilities, he was soon able to convince local Fügen-based baker Fred Unterwurzacher of his vision and encouraged him to join the project. Together, the two men took up the challenge of constructing a ski resort in the Hochfügen mountains. Even then, reliable snow until late spring and the high-Alpine charm were the driving forces behind this decision. In 1961, the pair were finally ready for the construction work in the Finsinggrund valley to begin and the road leading to Hochfügen was made accessible to small omnibuses, as minibuses were known back then. And the rest, as they say, is history... 

The 1960s

Visionary from the very beginning – turning a dream into reality.

1961: A ski resort is opened in the Finsinggrund valley

  • The high valley “behind” the Gilfert peak is made accessible; protected from the foehn wind, it enjoys deep snow coverage
  • The resort was founded by local baker Fred Unterwurzacher and the resourceful skier and mountaineer Hans Theato from Munich
  • Two platter lifts are constructed in the secluded valley. Named Lamark and Pfaffenbühel, they climb from 1,500 metres to 1,950 metres above sea level and each carry 600 people per hour
  • The communities of Fügen and Fügenberg make the 13.2 kilometre road accessible
  • The ski resort’s downhill runs are regarded as being just the right level of difficulty, fast and suitable for racing
  • Visitors flock from Munich
  • The resort is first inspected in April and is operational by December 1961
  • In 1962 a day pass costs 70.00 Austrian schillings for adults and 50.00 Austrian schillings at the reduced rate (approx. 5.00 euros or 3.50 euros in today’s money)

The 1970s and 1980s

The start of a new era

1971: Zillertal locals take over the resort and continue to expand Hochfügen

  • 1971: Three locals from the Zillertal valley, engineer Hans Lang, Gottfried Schiestl and Hermann Wetscher, acquire the shares in the Skiliftgesellschaft Hochfügen ski lift company
  • 15 million Austrian schillings (approx. 1 million euros) are invested to construct a “ski circus”
  • The access road is widened to six metres, tarmacked and made passable in both directions
  • 1971: The left side of the valley, known as Holzlam, is opened up with a double chair lift (1,010 metres long) and a T-bar lift (1,010 metres long) with a capacity of 2,000 people per hour
  • 1976-1978: Pfaffenbühel is given three new T-bar lifts, known as Pfaffenbühel I to III
  • Hochfügen has 180 beds for guests in Hotel Hochfügen, Lamark Guesthouse and Theato House
  • 1983: Pfaffenbühel double chair lift – by the start of the 1980s Hochfügen has seven lifts
  • “There’s always snow in Hochfügen”/“Hochfügen has reliable snow from December to May”

The 1990s

Shaped by innovations

 

Extended to 2,400 metres and modernised on the Lamark side 

  • New state-of-the-art facilities and the first cable car, the 8erJet, is opened
  • 1992: 4-seater Hochfügen 2000 chair lift
  • 1993: Panorama Restaurant opens
  • 1994: First consignment of snow machines arrives
  • 1994: Kristallbar opens
  • 1997: FIRST cable car constructed in Hochfügen, known as the 8erJet
  • 1998: 8er Alm opens

The 2000s

Broadening horizons

The dawn of the new millennium and Best Connection

  • 2001: Modern 6-seater chair lift with weather-proof protective covers replaces the Holzalm double chair lift and T-bar lift
  • 2003: T-bar lift to 8er Alm constructed
  • 2004: Zillertal shuttle and Best Connection
  • 2007-2008: Lamark reservoir constructed and stock of snow machines extended to cover 95% of the pistes
  • 2011: Obitraudi black piste opens
  • 2011: 8er centre opens with the 8er Treff bistro, 8er Rent and 8er Info
  • 2016: 6 KSB-Waidoffen ski lift