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Trois Vallees vs St. Moritz

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Which resort has the best off-piste skiing and which has the most off-piste? Which resort can you reach the majority of the off-piste easiest? I realize it varies season to season, but which resort is likely to have the best snow in late January? I usually go for the highest altitude resort just in case.

FYI, I prefer good off-piste conditions over steepness. Just to be clear, steepness is fine, but I have nothing to prove.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Welcome to snowHeads @skimachine, snowHead

Hmm...Slightly odd query if you don't mind me saying so. Have you skied the Alps before (your query sounds like someone who hasn't)?

Finding someone on SHs who has skied both ski areas might be a bit tricky as they are very different and probably appeal to very different clientele. I can only speak for the 3V-which isn't one "resort" but at least 8 resorts all seamlessly linked.
"Best" and "most" are pretty subjective opinions. Given the sheer size and accessibility of all of the mountains in the 3V, there is no shortage of skiable and accessible off piste, but there's no accounting for the weather. Late Jan is a good time, but if you are a newbie to the area a guide is always the best and the safest option- apart from the dedicated free ride zones (of which there are now quite a few). Not sure what the average snowfall is in St Moritz (a quick google search suggests lower average snowfall than Meribel).
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
If you want easy access Iíd probably go with 3Vs
There is some incredible terrain around St Moritz but it is a bit drier so conditions are more of a gamble and (in my fairly limited experience) itís a bit more the sort of place where you do an amazing run down a glacier in the middle of nowhere and then have to get a train home, rather than smash out loads of powder laps
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I agree with @Perty, that 'best' and 'most' are too subjective to give a useful answer. St Moritz has a lot of off-piste potential, but it is a bit more scattered (as are the lifts), and you'd need to use car or bus (or helicopter, which is permitted in St Mortiz, but not 3V) to get to some of the areas.

Average snowfall isn't a particularly useful guide. St Moritz and 3V get significantly different snowfall depends on where the weather comes from, so I don't think you could usefully compare them
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Quote:

If you want easy access Iíd probably go with 3Vs


Yes - I once heard a Swiss (!) ski instructor describe the 3V as the "best off piste playground" in the world. He wasn't saying it was the best off piste in the world just that the quantity and quality of easily accessible off piste without the serious navigation and mountain safety challenges of - say, Argentiere/St Anton/Engleberg was remarkable.

I'd say that was fair comment. It has plenty of high skiing too.
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I have been to Chamonix and Val d'isere with my ski club and will go with a ski club this year. One trip is St. Moritz and the other Trois Vallees. At this point I don't have a preference as to which place to go so I am trying to decide.

I had a ski guide in Val d'isere and I will have a guide the whole time I am on this trip. I prefer slack/side country skiing rather than back country skiing.

I am a bit concerned with St. Moritz given the mountains are not connected and I was not a fan of riding the bus in Chamonix with my ski gear on in a full bus traveling on winding roads.

Given the cost of both trips I want to make sure I maximize the probability of getting good snow or at least good coverage for on-piste skiing as I found Chamonix really didn't have that much on-piste skiing.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I happened to have skied both places. They're quite different in character.

I think 3V has "better" skiing overall, for average skiers. Large interconnected lifts and miles and miles of piste. Lots of in-between-the-piste kind of off-piste, and a lot of back of the mountain kind of off-piste too. Of my 1 week there, I could see so many places to go off! The only thing is its popularity. So you'll be competing with others for fresh powder/track, if that's your angle.

@Arno puts it quite well. St Moritz is the kind of place you get to get away from the rest of the skiing madness. But it's not the most convenient layout overall. That said, a lot of the traveling is via train not buses. So you'll not be standing in a full bus in your ski boots.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
3V definitely. Stay in Val Thorens or maybe Mottaret. But we preferred VT as it gives access to the high stuff and some epic itineraries.

We had friends who worked as instructors and showed us where to go. I would say you really need a guide to get the best out of the place. Doing the Pralognan without a guide would be silly.

See for more

https://valthorensguide.co.uk/offpiste.html
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skimachine wrote:


I am a bit concerned with St. Moritz given the mountains are not connected and I was not a fan of riding the bus in Chamonix with my ski gear on in a full bus traveling on winding roads.

Given the cost of both trips I want to make sure I maximize the probability of getting good snow or at least good coverage for on-piste skiing as I found Chamonix really didn't have that much on-piste skiing.


Where is the 3V trip based and what dates? Agree with the comments above about VT or Mottaret. I did a season in VT and there is masses of side country easily accessible stuff from meadow hopping to steeper terrain off the Cime de Caron. Thereís also the scenic Lac du Lou itinerary and the Orelle valley all 100% lift served. Even more options off La Masse in les Menuires and off Mont Vallon on the Mottaret side. With a guide thereís a couple of short skin options with long descents down the Gebroulaz and Borgne glaciers and the magnifique West Face of the Peclet glacier!
With good snow low down there is also a ton of stuff in the Meribel and Courchevel valleys! The piste skiing is also vast and varied. You canít beat a 3V rally for covering big distances in a day and not skiing the same piste twice. Enjoy!
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