Major events in the evolution of dry ski slopes.

1927 Berlin and Vienna’s Schneepalasts offer fake ‘snow’ on matting (above).

1930 An indoor dry slope with coconut matting base and chemical mixture snow opens in Paris. (above)

1935 Lillywhites Shop in London converts dance hall to ski slope.

1936 Thomas Castberg of California applies for a patent for brush mat ski slope material (above, granted 1939)

1937 German skier Heinz Ermel patents a ski slope conveyor machine (above), but it does not appear to have ever been built.

In November 1937 Ermel opened what’s believed to be the first permanent indoor dry ski slope, at Charlottenburg in Berlin, described as having a brush matting slope with a pitch of up to 42 degrees! The building was destroyed in 1942 by wartime bombing.

The Créppins slope at Arcachon on the shores of the Bay of Biscay. 

1938 250m Pine Needles on Sand Slope opens in France.

1939 Pine Needles Dirt Slope Opens in Hollywood, Used by Numerous Movie Stars

1945 Slovenian Peter Florjančič invents the first working ‘skiers treadmill’ (above) whilst living in Davos, Switzerland.

One of Mr Neurauter’s classes

1952 Herbert Neurauter teaches skiing on hard surfaces.

Skiing Mount Beacon, New York State, Summer 1956

1956 Ski run on crushed plastic opens in New York State. (above)

1956 An artificial ski slope surface mat is patented by Jacques Brunel (above) – unclear if it is ever manufactured.

1958: German Industrialist Dr Rudolf Alberti patents slope using baryt waste rock.

1959 Pietro Aquaderni of Bologna patents dry slope mat that is first to go in to production.

1961 Dendix begin manufacturing dry ski slopes.

1962 SkiDek Corp patent moving belt dry ski slope (already in use in 1961, above).

Also a ski jumping competition on an artificial surface took place in September at Kamzik, Bratislava, (now Slovak Republic).

Torquay Ski Slope in 1960s

1963 First permanent UK dry slope opens in Torquay (above).

Zondal ski slope 1964-2017

1964 Belgium’s purpose-built Zondal ski slope opens.

1965 200m slope, Longest Yet, opens at Hillend, Scotland

1967 France’s Longest dry run opens at Dieppe, France.

1968 A ski slope opens between the 3rd & 5th floors of Grand Central Station, New York

Il Primo Ski club’s slope in the Netherlands

1969 Il Primo club opens NL’s longest slope at 71m.

1979 A 500 metre long dry slope opens at Landgraaf, NL

Landgraaf 1979

1986 Briton Mist dry slope lubrication system launched.

1988 Sheffield opens Europe’s new largest dry ski centre.

1995 Alpine Engineering, today the world’s largest manufacturer of ski treadmill conveyor belt ski slopes established in The Netherlands.

1996 Snowflex surface launched on the market.

1999 Neveplast begin trading.

Alpine disk slope of ‘ADS’ revolves horizontally as skiers descend ‘forever’

2015 Alpine Disk revolving slope opens in Utrecht.

Kagura, Japan

2016 Kagura, Japan, builds world’s longest slope to date at 1.1km

Kopaonik, Serbia

2018 Europe’s Longest Slope opens at Kopaonik, Serbia

2019 Chechnya, Russia, build’s world’s new longest slope at more than 1.1km (below)