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ski resorts you won't return to, and why?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Usually the high rise, high Altitude French resorts come top of the list. Exceptions are Led Arcs - I've never skied it but it has almost cult following, VT - probably the only resort in Europe that gives great snow, pretty much all season and Risoul which is high, offers a far bit of skiing and yet seems charming and uncrowded.

ST Anton is a Marmite resort. The new links have now put Arlberg up there with some of the French mega resorts but it just attracts a lot of a certain type of skier that puts a lot of people off.

It's such a subjective thing. Interesting comments on here about cold, windswept and a few huts as accommodation. Sounds like Glencoe. Anyone who's been to Glencoe always seems to love it.I did.

Interesting comments on here about La Plagne. I've skied it a few times and thought it was good until I skied places like the 3V and the Dolomites. It was a bit like going from a Renault Laguna to an S class Mercedes.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@under a new name, fair point, I was expecting an ugly village having previously been to Tignes. But La Plagne isn't really one village, it's about a dozen, two of which admittedly looked a lot less ugly, but none of which had any sort of life or atmosphere.
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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?
nowhere, enjoyed skiing everywhere, England, Scotland, USA, Japan, all over Europe.

Given the chance of skiing a day vs working I'd take skiing every time!

Even a bad days skiing in rain has nowt to do with the resort!

Some examples of where you make the most of what you've got.

Puy St Vincent - fresh snow was great, in slush hired a mono board and thoroughly enjoyed it!

All the people dissing La Plagne is great, had fantastic off piste there as didn't seem to get as tracked out as other resorts Very Happy
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I think Iíd return anywhere Iíve been to before but it all comes down to value. I could go to Bulgaria (never been but the OH has) for a week or I could go to any number of Austrian resorts for about £100 more. The value isnít just monetary but time. Given my job I realistically have a 4 week period when I could ski, 5 if Easter falls early. I can actually only probably go away for two weeks give or take a few days if DIY-ing. So I would always go somewhere that I think is good value - good enough to use up my valuable resources f time and money! Iíd go back to L2A or Soll if the price was right (the two that are probably lowest on my list of ski experiences), but would I go back if I could go somewhere else for not a lot more?

When it comes down to it if I was offered a free week skiing I would go regardless of where it is! So never say never.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
hammerite wrote:
I think Iíd return anywhere Iíve been to before but it all comes down to value. I could go to Bulgaria (never been but the OH has) for a week or I could go to any number of Austrian resorts for about £100 more.


Where in Austria can you go for £100 more? or are you excluding lift pass, food & drink?
Lift pass in Bansko is 160euro & you can have 3 course meal with a few beers, bottle of red & still have change from £20
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Mr.Egg wrote:
hammerite wrote:
I think Iíd return anywhere Iíve been to before but it all comes down to value. I could go to Bulgaria (never been but the OH has) for a week or I could go to any number of Austrian resorts for about £100 more.


Where in Austria can you go for £100 more? or are you excluding lift pass, food & drink?
Lift pass in Bansko is 160euro & you can have 3 course meal with a few beers, bottle of red & still have change from £20


I'm talking about the basic cost of the holiday. Flight, transfer and hotel if going with a TO. Again the cost/value of the lift pass is relative. Last year 3 of us had a week at Christmas in Hinterglemm HB with a TO for £1,300 - it wasn't much more than a trip to Bansko. The Ä95 extra on the lift pass would be worth it.

I'm aware though that this has digressed massively from the OP though!
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So I would discard the whole of France - ooooh controversial. I'm just done with the surly over-priced nonsense and the collision risk that seems to exist there much more than anywhere - just based on personal experience and confirmed by reading things on this very forum.

I wouldn't bother again with Voss in Norway or Are in Sweden.

Sadly Cairngorm has to be added to the list now that the Ciste is out of action and the White Lady is effectively so much shorter than she used to be. It just isn't worth the cost of a ticket.

I also think Whistler and Verbier get over-hyped but I'll keep them in. Likewise St Manton.
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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!
Les Deux Alpes

i. shitty lift system
ii. not a great ski area
iii. aggressive and rude lift staff
iv. village full of drunks after 9pm

les Brasses

I like the skiing but it is full of rude, aggressive skiers and the restaurants are unable to cope with more than a couple of customers at the same time.
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Given a choice I would always go somewhere new - I like exploring places I haven't been before. But I've been to plenty of lovely places and some less lovely, but none so awful I wouldn't go back except for Ak Bulak in Kazakhstan. It has a black run and a green run and that's it. We got there and immediately took the chair to the top of the black and when we got up there we couldn't find the piste. That was when we realised we were at the top of a very tall and pointy mountain in the northern himalayas with no piste, no piste patrol or anything. My brother (who having lived in a ski resort and worked in the skiing industry for over a decade is not used to finding himself out of his depth) sat down and swore. I took out my phone to take a photo of him in such an unusual predicament and the temperature (-35C) meant it's battery failed straight away. So we were up a pointy, tall and steep mountain, apparently unpatrolled by anything other than snow leopards and bears, with no phone, and not exactly able to see the way back down as the chair carried us up over a sheer cliff. We got down eventually and spent the rest of the day on the green run. Shymbulak, closer to Almaty, is much better but the Russian cabinet had popped over for a bit of private skiing for the weekend and closed it to the public.

As for everywhere else, I'm not a great fan of certain places - Tignes, La Plagne (bit of a French theme here!) but I'd go back to them if it was there or nowhere.
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i would never go back to austria until they have a smoking ban
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I'll take on anything - at home skiing generally involves Glencoe in a whiteout, I swear I don't know what that place actually looks like... - however my criteria is generally going to be accessible off piste with good snow conditions. Reduced to a holiday skier for the time being, I'm going to avoid low altitude unless I'm in the unlikely situation I can afford/ and get away with a last minute decision to somewhere cheap, empty and full of powder!
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
I'd have to think carefully about going back to Whistler. Went cos it was where my lad worked for 2 years and he wanted to show Mrs endo. Changed a lot since Vail takeover, v busy, when the weather comes in and the top lifts don't open it simply doesn't have enough lifts to get around easily. Day cat skiing was awesome, getting off the trails in bounds also v good, but getting there, well some days it was an hour to get up to mid level, and that's knowing which lifts to take etc. Due to location you are simply less likely to get sunny days than in the alps. 10 days of snow, I shouldn't complain I know, lower runs variable snow quality, not great for beginners, little other than cat tracks on blackcomb, and a few beginner runs on Whistler, but everyone is there! Almost too formulated now, a lot more US guests than previous trips due to Epic pass, and there's only so long I can take Strayans and Mercans in a hot tub.

They plan more lift capacity but no new lifts, meaning more people on already crowded slopes, opening some more terrain would be a better idea.

Europe for us next time I think.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
under a new name wrote:
Although I would take considerable convincing to return to a snowdome
I love teaching indoors, and have had a few extremely challenging days of being taught indoors, but just skiing up and down without a training focus holds very little appeal these days.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
under a new name wrote:
Isnít this a bit of an ďI was unluckyĒ thread?

ďFlaineĒ ďgets trackedĒ? Really, I am amazed that one of the most popular areas near Geneva ever gets any skiers, let alone those who like off piste.

Purpose built resort lacks ďfunĒ? Whoíd have thought?

Cervinia lift closures? You have to wonder why glacier skiing has to be at altitude. Itís most inconvenient.

Iím not sure an ďI visited this place one time and it was too/not enough sunny/rainy/snowy/avalanchey/Italian/etc.Ē which is not necessarily representative of the typical reality is terribly helpful.

+1

I wouldn't drag a beginner to Le Grave. Similarly, I would be bored in a mountain with mostly beginner runs. But I would return in a heartbeat if I happen to be near when there's a foot of fresh snow.

The OP is looking at the world through his own filter. what he dislike is exactly what others like! What others don't like is exactly what he likes.

And the condition remark is so classic.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
I disagree, there are plenty of resorts that I HATED because of terrible conditions (Soll.........,Spindleruv Mlyn) but I wouldnít disregard them based on a bad four days of no snow. I said I donít like Cervinia because Iíve lived in the valley for years and itís a consistently unreliable place. Likewise, I donít like VT or Tignes or places lacking trees
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Scotland.
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Toofy Grin Very Happy Smile
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rob@rar wrote:
Nowhere. For me skiing was an unimaginable privilege when I was growing up, and remains so now even though I get to ski a lot. Iíd be happy to return to any place Iíve been to.


A fine statement if skiing were for free.


Last edited by Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see? on Sat 3-02-18 17:48; edited 1 time in total
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Mollerski wrote:

Some resorts represent far better V for M than others, all things considered.

Different skier "value" the same mountain differently. Even your own "value" may change over time.

So a mountain of "no return" is simply a statement that it doesn't align with YOUR value for a particular trip.

Unless, you're fixed in your value for your whole life. Then I can see a mountain to never return.


Last edited by You need to Login to know who's really who. on Sat 3-02-18 19:56; edited 2 times in total
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Quote:

Nowhere. For me skiing was an unimaginable privilege when I was growing up, and remains so now even though I get to ski a lot. Iíd be happy to return to any place Iíve been to.


@rob@rar, +1
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@Mollerski, if the question was where had the best or worst value for money if have answered it in a different way. But as asked, I take the view that I like skiing wherever. Snow, slope, uplift and gravity and Iím a reasonably happy chap. I have favourites of course, but nothing close to a bad enough experience that I would never return.
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Totally pointless.
Iím a beginner; I go to Argentiere. Nothing is pisted, everything is steep, then it bumps up. What a crap resort. I hate it.
Iíve been skiing a while. I go to Argentiere. It snows. Nothing is pisted, everything is steep, then it bumps up. What a great resort. I love it.
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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!
rob@rar wrote:
@Mollerski, if the question was where had the best or worst value for money if have answered it in a different way. But as asked, I take the view that I like skiing wherever. Snow, slope, uplift and gravity and Iím a reasonably happy chap. I have favourites of course, but nothing close to a bad enough experience that I would never return.


I've knocked the VFM aspect out of my post as it confused the issue.
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It's all personal obviously (I've had a great Easter holiday in Cervinia) but I'd suggest avoiding Adelboden, it always seems to rain, the piste network is poor and it's bloody expensive.
I think Wengen is stunning but I wouldn't recommend it to people for a week's holiday... (puts on tin hat)
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I don't think it's a pointless topic. But it's important that people give the reasons why they didn't like a resort - then if they apply to you, it might be worth avoiding (or visiting at a different time of year).

Alpe d'Huez - I wouldn't book a holiday in December / January there again unless I knew there was going to be plenty of snow. The higher slopes are mostly rocky blacks, which were all closed on our late January visit as the base wasn't yet deep enough. The low slopes were bare, and that left a rather limited selection of slopes at middling altitudes and with no trees - not ideal for a whole week, with quite a few poor visibility days. If I needed to book in advance, I'd now aim for later in the season.

Les Deux Alpes - I wouldn't choose a whole week there, being the sort of skier that likes exploring new runs each day. We visited for 2 days and, despite most pistes being open, skied most of the area. At the time, the resort claimed >200 km, which I now know to be a big exaggeration. Lack of trees is also a problem (especially if booking in early season), though that's obviously an issue common to other ski areas too.
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As said above, it can be something unrepresentative that puts you off....and the resort could well have sorted it out over time.

For me, it was Ellmau and the Soll area....and it was years ago, possibly as much as 30.

- We stayed in a B+B, run by a middle aged man, who was a sandwich short of a picnic. He seldom washed...and appeared to sleep in the Breakfast room (which then smelled of unwashed BO in the morning).
- He put my Sister in Law in the wrong room. A large affair with a great view. He waited for her to unpack...and then told her he'd made a mistake. He then ushered her into a small box room, with no windows. She wasn't best pleased as she had to re-move all her stuff into her new "Jail Cell". We saw the funny side (which didn't help).
- The toilet door on our floor was clear glass. Puzzled
- We met nothing but arrogance/indifference in the shops. My wife bought some boots while there and they didn't bother to tell us there was a way of getting tax back.
- There was a shortage of snow - but they didn't close the runs that were affected. I ended up taking off my skis and walking half way down more than one red....and on one run, myself and Lady F were rescued by a kind Dutch Man (who was rescuing his Girlfriend), who got his car and gave us a lift back, saving us a considerable walk.
- The Piste Map for navigating the area was disjointed and hard to follow, as each area seemed to use a different style.
- The signs for navigating the area were poor.
- The lift pass was worn on an elastic around your neck and had to be inserted into every lift entry....and if you were standing a little too far away, would ping out of the machine and hit you in the face....very stingy on a cold morning.
- The local ski school started the day with their own Nationals, by raising one ski off the ground (tail down/tip up, like the start of a Kick Turn) and saying in unison, what sounded like "Sieg Heil", but turned out to be Ski Heil. My parents found it upsetting.
- My Sister-in-Law was carted off the mountain in a Blood Wagon, for a not too serious knee injury.....her instructor was plying his class of beginners with Grappa to keep nerves at bay!

I am quite sure this area is nothing like this now, but I was so put off, that I have never wanted to go back, as there are so many other places I know we will enjoy


Last edited by snowHeads are a friendly bunch. on Sat 3-02-18 23:35; edited 5 times in total
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
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Morttaret is grim. Wouldnít stay there again. VAL T is ugly. Skiing is brilliant but there are better places to stay. Avoriaz didnt float my boat but the Swiss side was better. LDA (which I am going to again next week has its minuses but I keep getting out voted
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
What an interesting thread. I had poor luck at Are, Sweden. Never got to see the top of the mountain in the 3 days I was there because of ice on the lift cables. What was open was horribly icy. Also not quite as big or steep as many of the other places I have been to. Neat part of the world, but don't need to go back to ski it.

I will exclude the small mountains in new england and around NYC that I go to, as its not a fair comparison.

I guess I have been lucky with all the other places I have traveled to, I have fond memories from N. America to Europe to Asia.
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Old Fartbag is the winner so far! 😁😁
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Scamper wrote:
Old Fartbag is the winner so far! 😁😁

It was so bad, most of it has been seared onto my brain...even after all those years.
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 Poster: A snowHead
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I wonder what people moan about for the next 50 weeks after they've had there 2 weeks crappy ski holiday in overpriced , poor conditions , bad lifts , disjointed ski areas Wink ... probably the British weather , brexit , fuel prices , too hot , too cold , not enough nurses , paying to much tax etc etc .... just saying ...

Enjoy it and being in the mountains , that what I say
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Markab1971 wrote:


Enjoy it and being in the mountains , that what I say

I always enjoy being in the Mountains....but that wasn't the title of the thread. snowHead
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Poiana Brasov, Romania. You get what you pay for and this was cheap....
Sainte Foy because my husband says never again, he was bored in 3 days and I forced him to go back two years on the trot (I love the place).
Whistler, Canada..because Ill never be able to justify the expense again..two weeks lift pass for two adults was the price of a European holiday... but oh what a trip...
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Every ski area Iíve ever been. They wonít have me back.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
There's a few I wouldn't rush back to.

Serre Chevalier. I know many Snowheads love it, but when we were there (back in about 1998!!) the lifts were slow, we had to catch buses all the time and it felt like we were just skiing up and down the same face. I disliked how disjointed it all was, and the village where we were staying was completely dead in the evenings. No doubt it's changed since but that's just my experience 20 years ago.

Kreischberg. Too small, nothing to do in the evenings. Some lovely pistes though, would be OK for a long weekend with a large group to make your own entertainment.

Axamer Lizum. Small, too busy, slow lifts and Gotzens town was pretty dead.

La Thuile/La Rosiere. Just didn't do it for me - again, dead in the evenings.

Pila Decent skiing but hated the gondola queue up and down every day. Aosta is a lovely old town - but not as lively as I'd expected. Did get to do the Vallee Blanche though.

Nassfeld Great skiing but no nightlife (are you seeing a theme here?)


There are many resorts I'd return to in a heartbeat though. Aside from Val d'Isere where I insist on going every year, I'd return to Saalbach and Ischgl anytime. I also loved the Dolomites, and I liked La Plagne, Les Arcs, Mayrhofen, Schladming and many others.


Last edited by Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do. on Sun 4-02-18 13:18; edited 3 times in total
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Itís funny though Morzine was pretty the fact it was hammering down with rain the day I left 20 years ago has meant Iíve never gone back.
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Mayrhofen would not be high on my return list, have stayed in Finkenburg a few times which is more pleasant with far fewer drunk and loud Brits. Maybe it's an age thing but pi ssed up Brits who have to shout at silly o'clock really get my goat. Actually the nationality is irrelevant. Better to go out of season and ski The Tux which is fun, quieter too.
Chamonix also rates pretty low, unless you have a car the distance between LeTour and LesHouches means either travelling for ages on a poor bus service or missing half of the resort. Nice town but spoilt, again, by Brit/Irish pubs.
As had been metioned before maybe timings are more important than the actual resort which includes snow conditions as well as weather over the set up, but, like a glass of nasty wine, you might finish it but are unlikely to rush back and buy another.
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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!
Markab1971 wrote:
I wonder what people moan about for the next 50 weeks after they've had there 2 weeks crappy ski holiday in overpriced , poor conditions , bad lifts , disjointed ski areas Wink ... probably the British weather , brexit , fuel prices , too hot , too cold , not enough nurses , paying to much tax etc etc .... just saying ...

Enjoy it and being in the mountains , that what I say


Is it all moaning?
There are literally thousands of ski resorts in the world, I have skied for over 30 years and have only scratched the surface though I have been to well over 100.
I have never not enjoyed a ski holiday though they certainly have not all been the same nor equally good.
Some areas I am likely to return to but not all, some because of practical considerations, some because of preference.
Equally I certainly will not be able to visit every ski resort I haven't been to
If someone wouldn't return to a resort and the reason given chimes with me it means I'm more able to visit resorts that I would enjoy more.
No resort is ideal for everyone hearing the downside as well as the up is useful.
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Fortress

Why - Got blown up in Inception. OK that was only a set but the ski area went bust years ago. Shame as anyone who has seen Inception has an idea of the fun terrain.


Bansko

Never been but nothing I have heard is in any way an incentive to ever want to go.
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A fun analysis I am spending hard earned money and I want good value. What is value? Nice surroundings, good quality accommodation, super snow making, good lifts, perceived safe skiing in white outs (mix of piste marking and tree lined), a bit of post ski atmosphere and, for me, a big area to cover as I am not a fan of doing the same run over and over again.

So, whilst never a never an unlikely are Baqueira very poor piste marking and no atmosphere (my fault - should have stayed down the mountain but then you have travel time), Wengen - when and if they ever replace the Mannlichen gondola and get rid of the Tschuggen T bar I would reconsider, Adelboden - just disappointing and disjointed and Skiwelt (other than a day out from Kitzbuhel), oh and Kronplatz -small and very sun prone but brilliant lifts. I would not spend a week at Sierra Nevada but if out there it is a great place to visit for a day when the weather is acceptable - see my recent TR, and my other hate is Morgins - mainly because the PdS circuit breaks down there and there are some pretty grotty lifts trying to do the circuit on the Swiss side. I have not skied in France recently - mainly because it seems to be very hard to get single accommodation without massive supplements whereas Austria and Italy have hotels that cater much better for single occupancy but there are may resorts that have invested hugely, have brilliant snow making and if the price of accommodation is right that compensates for the expensive meals and beer.

So then one becomes reliant of word of mouth - Bulgaria - think I can avoid. Pyrennees - need to give it another try - Andorra particularly Grandvalira because of size of resort - but it is a slightly ocean/sea driven climate which put me off last time I was in Pyrennees. Many of the other Pyrennees resorts seem fairly small - I have tried La Mongie and St Lary Soulan - the latter had some very slow lifts and long drags a few years back. Serre Che has many fans and seems to have invested heavily. Opinions seem mixed about Milky Way as some of the subresorts appear to have invested and others eg Sauze one gets the impression of a lot of older slower lifts. I would like to try Ziller Valley although again there are lovers and haters on this forum.

May be there is another criteria as I write this - real villages/towns where locals live year round and have other jobs outside of wintersports and leisure rather than manufactured purpose built resorts full of apartments. It was lovely on a foul day last season going into Bruneck, finding the fascinating WW1 cemetery. and people watching, including the ladies who white wine at coffee time, and the workers rushing out for there lunchtime menu, going into Kitzbuhel and down to Interlaken, as examples. Can I really say the same about Val Thorens or Flaine?
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