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Long weekend near Geneva, 20-23 April: where?!

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi,

My group (three 30-somethings, middling intermediates) could only settle on the weekend of 21/22 April (and a day or two either side) for our annual trip. We want to go somewhere convenient for Geneva (one of us lives there), but lots of the resorts seem to be closed or closing after mid-April. Current thoughts:

Zermatt: would be ideal once we're there, but it's a long transfer and at least one of the group wants to rule it out for that reason
VdI, VT: long transfer again
Tignes: ditto, plus one of the group didn't like his trip there
Verbier: looks like a lot of the resort closes after mid-month. Maybe the best option if the above are too far away?
Chamonix: not sure Argentiere alone will cut it (too hard!)

We like cruisy red and blue pistes, good scenery and some decent lunch/apres options.

Any suggestions? I read that some resorts are extending their season a bit given snowfall this winter, but couldn't find firm information on that.

Thanks so much
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
For reasons that may include contracts, etc., French resorts unlikely to extend.

That said, Grand Massif suggesting they are putting full closure back to last day Sunday 22nd. They aren’t committing to what they’ll open however.

I’m afraid, this late in the season, you were always going to have to compromise...
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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?
La Plagne would fit the bill, spent the last two days there and there is tons of snow above the main resort centres and the pistes are still in great nic. Similar transfer to VT admittedly but a good option for guaranteed long cruisy runs.
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Chatel/Avoriaz last day is 22nd but otherwise would work. Loads of snow still and plenty of cruise red/blues.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
DJL wrote:
Chatel/Avoriaz last day is 22nd but otherwise would work. Loads of snow still and plenty of cruise red/blues.


Bring your swimmers for Avoriaz! Forecast is getting super warm. I reckon Zermatt is your winner with the extra height and amazing views and restaurants plus the recent snow from the Southerlies. Or VT/Tignes(or VDI)/Verbier all have lots of north facing skiiing above 2200m. Car rental is super cheap at the mo (my bro got a 3 day rental from Geneva for €70). Zermatt’s 2h37 on Google maps which is shorter than Tignes. Verbier 1h50. VT between them.
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Thanks all.

They really don't seem to want to schlepp very far from GVA. How much worthwhile skiing will be open at Verbier that weekend (reds/blues remember)?

Apparently Brevent will be closing on 22 April, does anyone know whether there's any worthwhile skiing left there? I could live with 1-2 days there and 1-2 days at Argentiere but don't think 3 days at Argentiere will be entertaining enough.
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@tripowski, Brevent only open because there’s a music festival on and CdMB forgot they’d sold combination music/ski tickets.

So yes, it’s open but I understand only till lunchtime.

Trebles all round.
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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!
So skiing at Brevent/Fleg until lunchtime on Saturday or all day Saturday and until lunchtime on Sunday...?
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tripowski,

Do they really like skiing? Puzzled (Serious question).
If they can't be ar5ed to drive two & a quarter hours for good snow in Val Thorens I'd be seriously concerned... Shocked
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@tripowski, Verbier should still be good in the mornings - will be warm in the PM. Lac De Vaux, Jumbo, La Chaux all good for intermediates. Chassoure itinerary for a challenge. Weather will be glorious. We’ll be there.
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I’d be hitting up Verbier myself.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Aiming to go to Verbier on 28th.
Am I right in thinking that by that time only stuff above the Medran will be open ?
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@tripowski, http://www.montblancnaturalresort.com/fr/infos-live#b4

Brevent, "Horaires du 16 avril au 22 avril 2018, ouverture à 8h20, dernière montée pour le Brévent 14h45, pour Planpraz 15h15."

Flégère similar. Link between not open, presumably due avalanche risk on the Charlanon side of Brev.

TBH, after those times, it's going to be too gloopy to be fun anyway.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
How about staying somewhere in the valley around Martigny and then you have the choice to drive to wherever turns out to be open? There are lots of places within a hour's drive, including Verbier obviously, and Champéry (PdS), Les Diablerets-Glacier3000, Crans-Montana etc. Even Chamonix if you had a mind to. Apologies to those who've seen this before, but you could hedge your bets and stay at a thermal resort like the Bains de Saillon, between Martigny and Sion https://www.bainsdesaillon.ch/en/ and then even if everywhere's closed you can still do the 'wellness' spa thing. Given it's fairly quiet, tourist-wise, you may get a special deal at places like Saillon. And for Culture Vultures, the Fondation Giannada in Martigny http://www.gianadda.ch/ is always worth a visit.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Bergmeister wrote:
tripowski,

Do they really like skiing? Puzzled (Serious question).
If they can't be ar5ed to drive two & a quarter hours for good snow in Val Thorens I'd be seriously concerned... Shocked


Following up on Bergmeister's point - what are you classing as a long transfer time? The transfer time to VT by coach can be painfully long, but (as mentioned above) by hire car it's very manageable. I've got a long weekend in VT planned at the end of the month, with a car hire for the transfer - I'm not anticipating it being an issue.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Just did 4 night trip in VT

Transfer in hire car from Geneva was just over two hours. I don't feel that's bad at all.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I think these guys are more interested in a spot of sking followed by lunch and a lot of beer.. not trekking about to find some late season epic off piste .
So forget driving from a central area. They will never agree on a designated driver !
I even doubt it’s the transfer there that will worry them , but the transfer back after a few nights on the pop ..

So close to Geneva. Three hours sking in the morning and some decent bars ....
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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?
In Chamonix you could spend a morning doing the Vallée Blanche. One day at Brevent, one for the VB, and one at Argentiere should be enough variety to not get bored.
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@Steve77, won’t be much open up Brev I don’t think, if whole Charlanon side is closed.

1 VB, 2 GMs.

Sorted.

Lunches at Requin if it’s open and accessible after VB, Cremerie, Refuge du L. if they must, or back down in Argentière.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
WindOfChange wrote:
Aiming to go to Verbier on 28th.
Am I right in thinking that by that time only stuff above the Medran will be open ?


Probably by then skiing to town would require some skis off sections on the path. Best skiing is above Medran anyway and north facing should still be good due to the snow depths
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@BobinCH, Thanks for the info.
I seem to remember a few of years ago the road down was sketchy by late March.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@WindOfChange,

It was fine on Sunday but the next 10 days are seriously warm!

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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!
@BobinCH, We will be going to Avoriaz this weekend for the closing party at chez Flo - if that turns out to be the last rites then so be it.
Its 75 mins drive to Verbier, so if it is really pants by the 27th, we might just call it a day.
Thanks again for the updates.
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Thanks everyone. In the end we were offered the use of a friend's apartment in Argentiere, so we went there and skied Grand Montets Saturday and Monday and drove to Verbier on Sunday. The reds above Les Ruinettes and at GM were the perfect level for us, and the snow was good.

It turned out that the reason why our friend who lives in Geneva was so averse to a long transfer is that he wanted to avoid taking any time off work - he didn't tell us that until we were there (and we declined to drive him back and not ski Monday - told him to get Easybus on Sunday evening). Bear in mind also that he gets to ski all winter so is less concerned about seeking perfect snow and skiing all day than some! And I'm definitely of the school that says spring skiing works best if you go hard from 9/10 until 2/2.30 and then do only a couple of runs to get back to the car/chalet...
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tripowski,

He sounds like a good mate!

I'm pleased you told him where to go (ie the bus stop!) Very Happy

It sounds like you had a worthwhile trip.
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Thanks, we did. Will definitely consider a trip like this again - perhaps 2x long weekends is the way to go for me rather than 1 whole week away. OK, there's more travel time, but my flights were only £86 and I like to try new resorts. Although obviously I barely scratched its surface, it was great to see Verbier and get an idea of what the fuss is about.
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