As we approach the end of the 2014 Winter Olympics we can look back at all the work that went into transforming a beach resort town into a host for the winter games. While most of Russia experiences cold weather and snow, Sochi is extremely unpredictable; because of this many people don’t realize the work that went into preparing the town to be able to host the winter events. Some of the events such as figure skating, bobsled, and curling are done in stadiums, indoors. This just constituted construction of facilities in the Olympic Village big enough to host them. This wasn’t the case for the majority of the events that take place outdoors and rely on good snowy conditions.
During the weeks of the Olympics reported temperatures were in the 60’s, nowhere near normal conditions for sports like the giant slalom or the snowboard half pipe! The process of even getting snow on the ground in Sochi was intense. Sochi officials were not releasing full details but the process included one of the largest snow making systems in Europe with 400 snow cannons set up through the slopes. An article from The Verge also reports that as a backup plan there are 710,000 cubic meters of snow collected from previous winters and stored in insulated containers in the mountains to prevent melting. As the outdoor events come to a close we can see that the process was worth it. Despite the warm weather, the mountains stayed snow covered and crews worked hard to remedy any melting that caused serious problems to the athletes. Looking back Sochi certainly had some flaws when it came to preparation however overall it was a successful Olympics!