Heavy snow has fallen over the weekend, closing five mountain passes in Switzerland.

According to the Swiss news agency, Swissinfo.ch, early snow has fallen as low as 1200 metres in certain regions of Switzerland. The five Swiss mountain passes of Nufenen, Furka, Grimsel, Susten, and San Bernardino (all above 2000 metres) have been closed since Saturday.

The valleys most severely hit by the snow storms were Engadin and Surselva in the Graubuenden canton. The ski resort of [R424R, St. Moritz], located in the Graubuenden canton, is one of the first to kick off its winter season each year; due to open Oct. 16.

The ski area of [R1104R, Engadin-St. Moritz] offers access to a total of 350 kilometres of ski pistes in Switzerland's largest winter sports region. St. Moritz's ski area, set between 1800 and 3300 metres, is accessed via 60 modern lifts and offers panoramic views over the frozen lakes of Silvaplana and Sils. The 88 downhill runs are scattered with 37 mountain restaurants serving renowned homemade food; St. Mortiz hosts the Gourmet Festival Jan. 31 to Feb. 4. There's also 180 kilometres of trails for cross-country skiers across the Upper Engadin landscape.

Other Swiss resorts with early openings dates include [R517R, Zermatt], [R661R, Saas-Fee], [R633R, Klosters], and [R617R, Engelberg].

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