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Poster: A snowHead
Mon 9-04-18 14:36
Replies: 505
They seem to have introduced lots of 30kph lanes on far right for lorries now - these were the ones we aimed for as Disco with roofbox is cutting it fine where there are height restrictions! +1! Went zipping through these yesterday (also Disco + roofbox) bypassing the (admittedly very small) queues and feeling smug - that is until the last peage before Calais near Saint-Omer where we were funneled off the autoroute towards a business park! We lost no time however as there's a roundabout and a re-joining slip a couple of hundred metres or so after the barrier - so this might be a handy little nip-through if there ever are bad queues at this peage... Glad to read about the universal disdain for Belgian drivers - I was worried that I was starting to hallucinate that every car whipping past at 160+ kph and/or tailgating had Belgian plates, it really was as though there was some sort of Belgian cannonball run going on - although we were buzzed by several M-series Beemers with British plates that would've caught the attention of the Gendarmes as well!
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Mon 26-03-18 10:04
Replies: 505
@Kagallag, Maundy Thursday is widely accepted to be the worst traffic day in the year, you're a brave man/woman/family! By 9pm things should have calmed down to just 'busy' around the M25 but keep an eye/ear out for traffic updates about any accidents or incidents throughout the drive - one bad smash could really disrupt your journey. Good luck - Done that London/Holyhead drive several times, love the bit through Snowdonia & North Wales - the rest of it not-so-much!
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name.
Fri 23-03-18 16:06
Replies: 505
@sparklies, tbh I don't know, never bothered with Flexi-Plus as I'm too tight - if they're really busy, the worst queues are before check-in anyway regardless whether you've got a flexi or not - it doesn't give you priority to bypass the queue on the motorway! That said, you will get on the next available train when you do get to check-in which means you don't waste any time in the terminal but again, I doubt it will be too bad this year as the school holidays are a bit more staggered. I'm not sure you're timings are quite right though - if you arrive at check-in c.7am, you should be on a train by 7.30-40 or so (without looking, I think there's one at 7.36?) and that'd have you disembarking in France c.9.15am (local time...)
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Fri 23-03-18 15:32
Replies: 505
@sparklies, Would getting there for 7am be too late in terms of crowds on the train? 2 years ago on Good Friday we were booked on a c.7.45am train and had a small queue - maybe 20 mins - and got on the train after the one booked but we were cutting it a bit fine for our check-in anyway. People we know who arrived in good time for a train at c.9am had a 2-3 hour queue in operation stack... I'd say arriving at 7am on a flexi will probably see you straight through. On a similar time train this year (Good Friday again) and what will be will be - I don't expect it to be as busy however because in 2016, all the schools (state and private) broke up on the Thurs as Easter was so early whereas this year, private schools generally break up today, state schools next Thurs. Happy driving!
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Sat 24-02-18 13:23
Replies: 66
To be honest, I'm not really concerned with the accuracy of the speed as I assume it's not going to be particularly reliable - from either a phone or a Garmin - when there's such a huge range of speeds. I just like seeing where I've been overlayed on a map. I'm fairly sure I wasn't going 108km/h though! I was doing big carved turns down an empty and not particularly steep red run - and yes, the guide did say he'd need to put some rocks in his pack to keep up with me (but that has more to do with him being, well, a guide and 7 stone wet through and me being a prop forward!) However I'm on mid fat all mountain skis with edges than haven't been touched in 25+ days skiing and didn't feel anywhere near the limit so you tell me if I was going nearly as fast as Aksel Svindal! As I said above, overall I found SkiTracks to be more accurate than the Garmin. Maybe I should qualify that with it actually being more representative of the days skiing - including uplifts etc - and I suspect that is because SkiTracks is designed to be a ski app and has better (or simply more ski-appropriate) backend processing of the data it receives than Garmin or Strava (including the speed X 2 multiplier!) - if someone produces a ski-specific app that the Garmin can send the data to, that would be a better comparison.
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Fri 23-02-18 20:33
Replies: 50
Much more power, smoother, and mpg improves a lot. Maybe it meters wrongly, but the dash computer went from 52 ish to 56, then 58 over the next couple if years, on the same trip. You have seen the headlines about VAG and their dodgy diesels, right?
Well, it's only polite to Register
Fri 23-02-18 13:45
Replies: 3
The Grands Montets (above Argentiere, handily) is the highest area in the valley and probably the most consistently-steep skiing area in the Alps with tons of lift-accessed off-piste, it's awesome and despite the apparently few lifts actually has more than enough terrain and variation to keep an advanced skier entertained for several days however the valley has a lot to offer in other areas - Les Houches on a snow/cloud day is in the tress, likewise Courmayeur through the tunnel in Italy (admittedly a PITA to get to from Argentiere if no car), Le Tour at the top of the valley and Brevent/Flegere both great in their own ways too. Get an MBU pass and explore - most of the faces within the bounds of the lift systems are skiable and locals on the hill (lifties etc) on the day can often advise on current conditions and if safe etc but if you're heading out of the bounds of the lift-accessed areas or up the Aig. du Midi, get a guide. The original and best mountain resort IMHO, you'll have a ball! (other opinions are available...)
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Fri 23-02-18 13:25
Replies: 62
Think about driving on Good Friday if you can - can be busy at the tunnel here but once you're past that there's almost nothing on the roads through France as it's not a holiday.
Then you'll get to see more forums.
Fri 23-02-18 9:04
Replies: 66
@Ozboy, it's set in smart mode. To be fair, it's much more reliable than the phone when cycling and other activities - but it has view of the sky (or at most 1 layer of clothing) then. Also, looking back, the worst location problems were when I did a guided off piste route down a couloir and deep valley surrounded by high cliffs so they may have interfered too. Overall, I'm very happy with the fenix 5 - but ski tracking is very much a bonus feature rather than core function.
And post your own questions...
Thu 22-02-18 16:25
Replies: 66
which other snowHeads love to answer.
Thu 22-02-18 14:08
Replies: 14
Glad you liked them, your experience is the exact same as my wife's who was very sceptical about getting her own skis until she had these! (also 163cm)
And they're a friendly bunch.
Thu 22-02-18 13:59
Replies: 66
Got a fenix 5 and used it last week for recording skiing - actually found SkiTracks on my (android) phone appeared to be more accurate.. a mitigating factor though: fenix was on my wrist, under at least a base and mid layer, GTX shell and cuffs of Hestra gloves so not sure how good GPS/GLONASS signals were whereas phone was in chest pocket of shell. The fenix seemed to record more false locations than skitracks too (i.e. big jumps off to one side) I take this to be because both the signal was interfered with by clothing and also maybe much faster location refresh rate on the watch than the phone...? Also, skitracks recorded MUCH higher top speed on an empty red run (we were out v. early with a guide hammering it round to where we wanted to be before the lifts opened properly..) than the fenix so that's what really matters! Got the watch mainly for cycling and open water swimming though (where it is much more accurate than the phone - cycling at any rate, not swum with the phone!)
You know it makes sense.
Wed 21-02-18 17:28
Replies: 13
If not constrained by budget then both Rifugio Comici near Ciampinoi above Selva and Club Morizino at Piz La Ila in-between La Villa and Corvara should be on your list. Both quite fish-centric menus. Comici friendlier atmosphere of the 2 - ask for the "cosy room" and don't miss out on the Grappa petrol pump..., Morizino better food (it is truly amazing - lots of little amuse bouche etc) but service can be a bit formal (I think it has a Michelin star?). Both have surprisingly affordable wine lists (i.e. they have plenty of good, local, affordable options on them as well as the ridiculously priced big names for the Russians...) and are really worthwhile visiting.
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Wed 21-02-18 16:38
Replies: 7
I'm a very wide 47 and have smartwool phd XL - they come up to my knee but I need the room in the foot. I'd concur with the others that say L would be right.
Poster: A snowHead
Wed 14-02-18 16:34
Replies: 624
Maybe 10 min queues in the morning on the Sellaronda lifts? Otherwise hardly any queueing. Next week will be comparatively empty! Another awesome day of sunshine, snow and food!
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Wed 14-02-18 7:21
Replies: 624
Headed over to Ciampac yesterday (ski'd down to Canazei and got the bus to Alba, was fine) and found excellent snow. Lovely pistes, the black back down to Alba is wonderful rollercoaster of a run and off the sides up in the bowl was all boot-deep barely-tracked powder! Seemed like they'd had a bit more snow over there. A great day!
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name.
Thu 8-02-18 13:36
Replies: 24
jma wrote: (I'll still be getting there at least 2.5 hours before departure though!) Eeeks er maybe we need a 3am leave time... <gulp> we are already bringing our departure time forward due to the M27 being completely closed overnight for a two junction stretch we were planning on using. Well 2.5 hours might be a bit of an exaggeration but our flight is mid-morning (and at T2) on Sat when it's likely to really busy, it sounds like your flight is much earlier if you're considering leaving (Hampshire?) at 3am. We also like to have enough time for a bit of brunch after security. Don't worry about it too much though - don't forget, you're on a scheduled flight from a major carrier - they run these same flights at the same time every week so they generally always have the staff on to manage the check-in - i.e. from a flight capacity perspective it's just a normal Saturday - with maybe a bit more checked luggage. It is not the Gatwick charter terminal where all of a sudden they're dealing with loads of extra flights specially scheduled for the 1/2 term getaway and they don't have the staff. Stress-free flying with a scheduled airline is a major reason why we DIY at 1/2 term...
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Wed 7-02-18 13:29
Replies: 24
the demographic for Saturday morning is going to be massively skewed from normal? Or am I miss judging the situation? Not at all, you've hit the nail on the head but it doesn't really matter what you do, you're not going to speed through the airport as if you're going on a business trip on your own with only cabin baggage! As you say, nearly everyone traveling on Saturday will be families with large amounts of checked luggage and in my experience the queues for bag-drop, or check-in are fairly equivalent (in fact as most people check-in online, the check-in desks are generally just bag-drop desks too...) but you've still got to endure them! I would say though that in recent years LHR in particular have got a lot better at having enough desks open to cater for the increased traffic. I went through T5 this morning and was the far side of security c.5 minutes after getting out the taxi (arriving only an hour before scheduled take off) and there was hardly a desk open. On Saturday though, when I'm back with family and 7 bags to check-in, I'd expect to see pretty-much every desk manned (I'll still be getting there at least 2.5 hours before departure though!)
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Wed 7-02-18 10:37
Replies: 24
If your car seat and ski bag are the only pieces of checked luggage you have then definitely a good plan to use the self-service check-in as you only need to go to oversized belt but if you've got other checked bags, you'll need to queue somewhere to drop them so I'd just go to the family check-in zones if I were you. They're fairly good at T5 now - they know they've got a load of families traveling, everyone's in the same boat and they get through the queue quite quickly.
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Thu 1-02-18 12:44
Replies: 9
If it's just side-piste or between-the-piste style off-piste you're after, the runs from Col Rodella and the Belvedere Bowl above Canazei are probably the best, also the little face from the top of Ciampinoi Gondola - this "off" piste gets ski'd out very quickly and you're unlikely to be laying fresh tracks bouncing through knee-deep pow but they're wide and open, you can easily see where you're going to end up and if you can learn to fight your way down a load of re-frozen cut-up crud with a degree of confidence you'll be fine anywhere! (most of these are actually north-ish facing so don't thaw/freeze as much and you can often find nice, soft snow on them - even if it is tracked out) If you're going to be more adventurous, the sides of the run from the top of the Marmolada offer some great "off" piste as well.
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Thu 1-02-18 12:23
Replies: 8
[url=http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?t=135561]http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?t=135561
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Tue 30-01-18 10:58
Replies: 624
It looks like this can be used to get back to and from Arabba to Pozza much more quickly than going via Canazei and the short bus ride From Arabba it must be quicker, yes, but less skiing...! If you're coming form Selva (as I will be in a couple of weeks!) it seems to me that it's still quicker to ski down to Canazei and get the bus up to Alba - according to the timetable there are buses every few mins (line 1,2,3 or 5) and the journey is 6-7 minutes, whereas if you want to get up to the new Cable Car to download to Alba, you've got to go up 2 busy (SR Green) lifts from the mid point between Col Rodella and Belvedere to get to it... or am I missing something? Someone said the bus stop is a long walk from the end of the piste in Canazei but it looks like it's right next to the lift... Anyway, never been over there so looking forward to it - will report back if bus is a nightmare or not! (fairly sure it's all going to be very busy in 1/2 term week anyway)
Then you'll get to see more forums.
Tue 23-01-18 16:26
Replies: 624
The problem with the hidden Valley and Marmolada from Selva is that you simply can't get there early enough to avoid queuing for the uplifts. Of the 2, I won't be bothering with the hidden Valley again - yes, it is a lovely and scenic run but we had to queue at Armentarola for 45 mins for the bus up to Lagazuoi, then again for (at least) 45 mins for the cable car, nice as it is, it is not worth 1.5hrs of queuing. The Marmolada I would definitely do again though, as there's a lot of skiing involved. By the time you get there there will generally be a 10-15min queue for the 2 man chair across from Arabba but it's a lovely long ski down to the cable cars after that but once you're there (probably around 11am if starting early-doors from Selva) there will be at least a 30min queue for the cable cars up - but the lifts are all synchronised and view from the top is amazing, as is the run down - really good, steep north-facing skiing with plenty of side-piste!
And post your own questions...
Tue 23-01-18 14:30
Replies: 624
@Aussieboarder, If the weather's been generally good, the passes between the resorts are generally open but they're a very long way round. Never been caught and had to rely on taxis but would imagine you'd be facing at least €50 to get back from Corvara - if coming from that way, you need to back at Borest lift by 3.30 latest as there can be queues to do the lift-chain up to Dantercepies, you can always do a few laps of Dantercepies slopes down to Selva which are fabulous runs at the end of the day as the sun goes down. The other way, you need to be at Piz Seteur by c.4pm I'd say, you can ski all the way down to Selva from there through Plan de Gralba anyway. Don't think there are any buses from Sella Ronda but there are up fro Ortisei/St. Christina but never got one.
which other snowHeads love to answer.
Tue 23-01-18 10:11
Replies: 9
Out there in a few weeks and very keen to get over to the Pozza di Fassa side. I'd assumed the best way (coming from Selva) is to ski all the way down to Canazei and get a bus up to Alba, rather than downloading in the new gondola from Belvedere side into Alba as you'd just end up doing 3-4 lifts in a row - is that right? (i.e. is there a frequent, easy bus between Canazei and Alba?)
And they're a friendly bunch.
Thu 18-01-18 14:40
Replies: 14
Look and Salomon both massive manufacturers for bindings, both will be well-made and conform to all standards - The look ones have a max DIN of 9 so they are quite lightweight and designed for lower intermediates and/or lighter skiers but they'd be fine, the Salomon ones are beefier with a Max DIN of 12. Personally I would go for the Salomons as your DIN settings will be low down in their range so you won't stressing the binding much at all, however the if money's the main driver, the Looks will be absolutely fine as I can't imagine your DIN would be set at anywhere near 9* *I'm not a binding tech, do NOT take my word for what your DIN settings should/should not be!
You know it makes sense.
Thu 18-01-18 14:07
Replies: 6
Cremerie du Glacier in Argentiere is by far the best restaurant that non-skiers can access - great traditional mountain food - but you'll need to book. The valley is segregated into 4 areas: Vallorcine/Le Tour at the eastern end - exposed and cold in bad weather but good slopes for intermediates real beginners will struggle. Good restaurants that non skiers can access in Both Le Tour and Vallorcine, booking advised. (2 very good options in Vallorcine - Cafe Comptoir excellent but can be pricey, the one in the train station really good and more basic) Argentiere (Les Grands Montets) - all steep, challenging slopes, good intermediates and above will enjoy, anyone below that level would have a tough day at the office unless they really want push themselves. Cremerie (above) is great, L'Argentero at the bottom also good - pizzas etc. Nothing up above worth going up for food-wise. Brevent/Flegere - middle of Valley above Cham town so nearest to centre. South facing, lovely on a sunny day, 1 beginners area above flegere, 1 at Brevent but they're not extensive, runs off Brevent, Cornu, Index and Floria lifts steep and challenging. No restaurants non-skiers could meet at unless they got the bubble/Cable Car up but none worth doing that for - all expensive and bit rubbish. Les Houches - South Western end of Valley, lower down, tree-lined for most of it, nice slopes, something for everyone although again, real beginners might struggle. If weather's bad, head here, great on a nice day too though. Several good restaurants on the hill (La Ferme is a favourite - rumour it's changed hands recently though, not been to LH for couple of seasons.) but none that can be accessed by non skiers - not sure what the ones at the top of the main uplifts are like if non-skiers prepared to pay for a bubble - suspect better to meet for lunch down in town. Only been tyo La Taniere once may moons ago - very good, yes, can't see how possibly accessible on foot unless a path up from St.G?! All good food places need booking in advance. Evening meals you really don't need to leave Cham town - limitless choice! Munchies (asian fusion) awesome, Moo (burgers) very good, too many to mention really. In terms of ski-run colours, they're a bit coy about them in Cham - reality is most blues there would be red/black in most other resorts and reds are dark red/black. Even the (very few) green runs (except the Savoy and Planards beginners slopes) usually have a little steep-ish surprise somewhere along their length. Enjoy!
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Wed 17-01-18 14:32
Replies: 35
Dolomites - Sella Ronda villages - are much quieter than France at 1/2 term, been going there for last 5 years or so. It's weird as to why but I've always assumed that there's only so many beds such that even when everywhere's full, the ratio of lifts & km to skier numbers is always favourable. This 1/2 term does coincide with Karnival/Fasching (pancake day) though which is at least a long weekend in DE/CH/AUT(&IT?) so it may be more crowded with day-trippers but the same was true in 2015 and I've rarely had to queue beyond a few mins for any lift and if there's any hint of cloud cover (or, even worse(!), snow) a significant number of punters stay indoors! There's a huge number of long, cruisey reds, some good, steep-ish stuff around Arabba and amazing scenery and food. Nothing not to like.
Poster: A snowHead
Wed 17-01-18 12:23
Replies: 14
My Wife's ski'd Bizzard Cheyenne's for the last 2 seasons and loves them, she's similar height to you, few lbs lighter maybe and a very good skier. They're excellent and forgiving on piste, (even icy ones) great over bumps and fine off-piste as long as you're not expecting the best from them in thigh-deep powder. They got her from the top of Grands Montets down to Argentiere in under 15 minutes last Easter which covered pretty much every snow condition you're likely to find without any fuss!
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Sat 13-01-18 11:49
Replies: 4
@Sharkymark, Cheers, will hold of booking until can see what conditions likely to be like nearer the time.. 2nd thoughts, may as well book as if there's enough snow to make Mesdi dodgy there'll be plenty of decent off piste from the normal lifts!
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name.
Fri 12-01-18 23:36
Replies: 4
Hi all, anyone done Val Mesdi off Sella Ronda? From top of Pordoi is skinning essential? I.e. can you boot pack it to the drop in with normal alpine gear or is it too far/not possible? Thinking of booking a guide for it when out in few weeks but got no touring gear and frankly can't be bothered hiring any! (Also, knees can barely cope with kick turns!) but a reasonable walk no probs.. Cheers
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Thu 11-01-18 14:21
Replies: 322
@Richie_S, if we risk 'losing' a day due to conditions I wouldn't worry about that too much. The last couple of weeks have been exceptional and everything "in-bounds" will have been stabilised by next weekend - in over 10 years of multiple trips per year to Cham, I've never lost a day to conditions. Check the live webcams before you head out - it can gloomy in the town with a thick layer of cloud hovering in the valley but brilliant sunshine up at Brevent/Flegere and if it's really bad in Cham, conditions can be completely different through the Tunnel in Courmayeur.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Mon 8-01-18 13:01
Replies: 322
Cham used to stay white from late Dec to early Mar. Maybe several millennia ago when there was a socking great glacier filling the valley but not since there's been a town there!
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Tue 12-12-17 17:18
Replies: 17
@dan100, chucking merino leggings over the compression ones is a good plan, has worked for me several times. Don't ditch the compression layer though as merino leggings have very little compression IME.
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Thu 30-11-17 11:12
Replies: 624
@Pasigal, this coming Feb will be our 6th consecutive 1/2 term in Selva and we've always had plenty of natural snow - even this year. Whilst the snow-making there is now legendary, there's a good reason there's a massive ski area there in the first place! Granted, not always fresh natural snow but if it's not snowing, it's sunny! (and if it is snowing, the slopes are deserted - win win!)
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Fri 17-11-17 12:50
Replies: 624
Haha, my post above makes no sense at all when it's at the top of a new page - if anyone's interested it references the "tube" map posted by luigi on page 1 :)
Then you'll get to see more forums.
Wed 15-11-17 12:00
Replies: 624
I wish my daily commute was from Venice to Passo Falzarego rather than Clapham to The City!
And post your own questions...
Wed 13-09-17 13:34
Replies: 21
Some snow around the SR today! https://bioch.panomax.com/ https://valgardena.panomax.com/dantercepies https://colrodella.panomax.com/ :sH:
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Fri 7-07-17 12:21
Replies: 18
AirBnB actually very good, typically. +1 - used AirBnB with great success in Cham several times over last couple of years.
And they're a friendly bunch.
Fri 3-03-17 10:34
Replies: 360
Courmayeur is included in the MBU pass (as long as it's more than 2 or 3 days iirc), not sure about Verbier but I think so. When you get there, you still have to go to the lift pass counter though to get it authorised for the day. There are daily buses to Courmayeur - they goes from the bus station in Cham Sud, the first one goes at 8.30 and there's another about an hour later and it costs €15pp, there are 2 returns at the end of the day. Don't think you have to book but they say you need to be there at least 15 min before departure. Not sure how early you'll be able get down to Cham Sud from Argentiere on the bus though.
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