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Pyrenees 2018-2019.

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Some snow in the French Pyrenees at last too...

https://www.facebook.com/gotothefrenchpyrenees/photos/pcb.749936735385863/749936398719230/?type=3&theater
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Excellent news.
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Looks like more snowfall from Jan 17th
http://www.meteociel.fr/cartes_obs/gens_display.php?ext=1&lat=42.388663967611336&lon=1.4150943396226445
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That's still an awful long way out...
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Glad to see there has a been a bit of a top up, I'm in El Tarter from Sunday for a week with my family so being able to ski back is a big bonus.

@ysb33r, I am very jealous of your office view....
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ysb33r wrote:
We are at Arcalis this morning. It looks fair conditions for the weekend, should anyone wish to make the trip. It will still be cold, but not as severe as today. We are having around -13°C on the top, without the wind chill. If my toes go cold in my boots, then I know it's cold.


Arcalis was beautiful today (Saturday). Some wind in the morning, but that mostly disappeared later in the day. They reckon they had 25cm snow. It wasn't that much noticeable on the groomers, but some side-piste had good deep snow. AAMOF they opened the Feissans drag lift into the smaller of the two freeride areas.

The only problem at Arcalis was that the Basera chair lift had a technical issue and only opened around 13:30. This meant that the only way to reach the La Coma region was via the new Tristiana gondola. This meant that once one was in the La Coma region was to spend time there as much as possible, before heading back. There were some big queues for the gondola at some stage.
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Glorious day yesterday in the Grandvalira. Pretty much the whole resort was open, although several of the upper chairlifts only opened around 10am. The Montmalus draglift in Grau Roig was open, but the drag to top of the Emcampadana in El Tarter was shut (although plenty of people had clearly made the hike across). The only major connection which was shut was across to Canillo.

The on-piste conditions were excellent, in fact they were pretty much perfect. The cold weather since Thursday's snowfall has resulted in plenty of well-groomed powder on offer. Off piste was still was thin, bar the occasionally patch, although lots had been trying to scrabble out some fresh tracks from the meagre coverage. A proper dump is required before the off-piste action can start properly.

The weather was sensational, as you can see from the grabs below, from my GoPro. Being the first weekend after back-to-school, it meant the resort was very empty and we never queued more than a couple of minutes for a lift.

I was pleased to be able to snatch a good day, because unfortunately the week ahead is looking lean, with a warm patch forecasted before cold weather returning next weekend. Snow is forecast on the horizon but I'm not really holding my breath. Ninja edit: the forecast has changed to become much better. Cross fingers!



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Cheers for the pics AlunAlun. Myself and a group of 18 are arriving in Pas on the 27th Jan.
Although the pistes look well treated I was gutted to see the forecast change for this weekend on snow-forecast.com
Predicted 30cm to like 7cm. I have everything crossed the snow gods not to be so cruel and we will get a decent deluge before we arrive.
Is anyone there at the moment? What are the locals saying?
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s.t.h.21 wrote:

Is anyone there at the moment? What are the locals saying?


We are hoping for some good snow, Will see what Friday looks like. Embarassed
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What do you say about forecasts? One week and offpiste-season is really on or will it change and waiting continues?

Well, still three weeks to arrival so a lot can happen.
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Welcome to snowHeads snowHead

Snow forecast in the short term for tomorrow, Sunday & Monday. Planning to go Friday & Tuesday to look at the side-piste conditions at Arcalis. If the Cruessans lift opens at Arcalis, then maybe the off-piste season have a chance of kick starting.

If that is good, chances are good too for Pas de la Casa / Grau Roig I reckon.

Longer term predicts snow on 23, 24, 26 Jan. Will have to see how that pans out.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
All of a sudden it's looking like Snowmaggedon in Granvalira next week... what are the chances?

https://www.snow-forecast.com/resorts/El-Tarter-Soldeu/6day/mid
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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
Same for most of the pyrenees Smile

https://meteoexploration.com/forecasts/Baqueira-Beret/

4 weeks till I'm out there...
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You know it makes sense.
Boom!
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It does look great, but it's worth remembering the current GFS run (thick black line below) is a bit of an outlier, with the scenario average being (thick red line) around half that predicted. That'd still be a decent snowfall, and Snowmaggedon is of course entirely plausible, but I wouldn't give it too much likelihood while there's so much noise between the scenarios. All scenarios predict some snow Tues/Weds, which is great. GFS also predicting an even bigger dump off in FI, though of course not worth putting too much emphasis on that yet.

Here's the Meteociel squigglies for El Tarter:

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Now that’s what I call a weather forecast !
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Forecast I've just seen indicates a megadump this coming week across the Pyrénées.

Anyone concur?

Beuller?
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Looks like Wednesday is the biggie. Fingers crossed
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Looks ot have been a decent snowfall over Arinsal / Pal last day or so?
Heading out on 27th Jan - got my fingers crossed for decent covering!
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Looking good for the Hautes Pyrenees at last - haven't yet been out this year which is unheard of!
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rob.m wrote:
Looks ot have been a decent snowfall over Arinsal / Pal last day or so?
Heading out on 27th Jan - got my fingers crossed for decent covering!


We had about 1cm persistent snow in the village, which is already a good sign. Given that we have snow forecast for most of the week, I think you should be fine. We'll probably have a peek at conditions tomorrow and then Friday or Saturday again.
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Hi everyone. I'm thinking about the Pyrenees for 1/2 term (cheapish flights to TLS still available). I was considering one of the French spa towns (Ax les Thermes, Bagneres de Luchon or Saint-Lary-Soulan) but I notice that Ax is only about 1/2 open and Luchon is worse. I also read that Saint-Lary-Soulan is prone to queues during French holidays. I see there is a reasonable amount of snow forecast in the next 48 hrs and the long range is low enough temps and a bit more snow. Does anyone think that will be enough to make the difference or would I be better off looking for somewhere to stay in Andorra (looks like Grandvalira is only 45mins further driving)? We don't really need >200kms of runs. A small area with a variety of blues and one or two tougher runs is fine, preferably under 3 hrs from TLS. Any helpful info greatly appreciated!
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ysb33r wrote:


We had about 1cm persistent snow in the village, which is already a good sign. Given that we have snow forecast for most of the week, I think you should be fine. We'll probably have a peek at conditions tomorrow and then Friday or Saturday again.


Decent snow conditions at Arcalis today. Groomed pistes were quite sticky this morning probably due to the low temperatures. Flat light all around due to some grey clouds hovering around. However, side-pistes had some decent soft snow and at least boot deep. Now we wait for Friday...
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For all of you wondering about the snow conditions. This is Arinsal this morning:



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Yay!
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In Arinsal at moment, not stopped snowing since yesterday afternoon. Only lower slopes open but knee deep powder on the slopes.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
In Arinsal at moment, not stopped snowing since yesterday afternoon. Only lower slopes open but knee deep powder on the slopes.
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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
Luz Ardiden is closed due to too much wind. But it is getting some snow: http://www.n-py.com/fr/luz-ardiden/webcams
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You know it makes sense.
Soldeu clearly hit this morning Smile
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Bianchigray wrote:
In Arinsal at moment, not stopped snowing since yesterday afternoon. Only lower slopes open but knee deep powder on the slopes.


@Bianchigray Did you get anything done today? Arinsal was closed pretty much the whole day and from other reports only a few lifts at Pal were open. The road to Arcalis was cut, so nothing happened there as well.

High winds seem to be forecast for tomorrow, so that might increase the avalanche risk. Saturday will be the best day by the looks of it.
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It seems that there's a bit of snow around Very Happy. Some years it happens sooner, others later - but the blocking high that traditionally affects the Pyrenees for a few weeks from Christmas onwards always seems to break at some point in the latter part of January.

It sounds like the winds are being a bit of a problem at the moment, although the sunshine looks very tempting. The weekend should be excellent. I'm getting reports of waist-deep powder in the Hortell sector of Arcalís, though the higher lifts are apparently closed today.

In the western Spanish Pyrenees, the great little ski area of Panticosa will finally be able to open - including its recently-constructed piste which runs all the way down to resort at 1400m. Right next door, 200 people were stuck for 24 hours on Wednesday in the spa complex that's up in hills, due to the avalanche risk on the access road.

Various areas are planning to open pretty much 100% of their domain, including Vallnord in Andorra, Cerler, Masella, Espot and Port Ainé; the latter has had a very good first half of the season - much better than Baqueira over the holiday period. Talking of which, Baqueira's back to looking like it should now, and the new Baciver sector should be completely open over the weekend.

Masella took some fantastic drone images yesterday; here's the one which I liked the most (courtesy of Dani Coma):

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what...snow wrote:
Hi everyone. I'm thinking about the Pyrenees for 1/2 term (cheapish flights to TLS still available). I was considering one of the French spa towns (Ax les Thermes, Bagneres de Luchon or Saint-Lary-Soulan) but I notice that Ax is only about 1/2 open and Luchon is worse. I also read that Saint-Lary-Soulan is prone to queues during French holidays. I see there is a reasonable amount of snow forecast in the next 48 hrs and the long range is low enough temps and a bit more snow. Does anyone think that will be enough to make the difference or would I be better off looking for somewhere to stay in Andorra (looks like Grandvalira is only 45mins further driving)? We don't really need >200kms of runs. A small area with a variety of blues and one or two tougher runs is fine, preferably under 3 hrs from TLS. Any helpful info greatly appreciated!


I think the latest snowfall has probably made a significant different to Ax and Luchon - but I don't have any first-hand reports of that. I'll let you know if I hear anything about how they're getting on.

I think Luchon possibly doesn't fit your bill (due to the lack of variety of blues; it's a brilliant little resort though), but both Ax and Saint-Lary do. I can indeed imagine that the latter is busy at French half term; it's the belle of the French Pyrenees. It's also hooked up with Peyragudes, Val Louron, and Piau Engaly under the Pyrénées 2 Vallées joint lift pass, which could be well worth a look at.
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Pyremaniac wrote:

Masella took some fantastic drone images yesterday; here's the one which I liked the most (courtesy of Dani Coma):



Beautiful blue skies!

The same cannot be said fro Pal, Andorra today. Sun was intermittent. The wind on top was strong and blew snow all around. Snow was deep between the trees.

Arinsal was still closed (as Pyremaniac said). I went for a quick skimo around lunch time yesterday and fell in to my waist before getting on to the skis. It's quite an exercise in agile awareness for a 50yr+ old when your skis are at waist level and you have to figure how to get your feet on top of them! Very Happy

I suspect Arcalis wil be great tomorrow - heading there early.
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Am getting particularly excited about my trip out to the French Eastern Pyrenees in 3 weeks time. I’ve never seen Les Angles go from 20/40 to 100/150cm within 48 hrs and a 5/5 Avi risk! As usual the smaller resorts (eg Espace C’Ambe d’Aze) seem a bit slower to update and open in response to new snowfall but the webcams and chance of a further decent top up next week make me hope that whole ski areas in every resort will be open throughout by the time I arrive! I really wasn’t expecting this 10 days ago when things look rather grim!
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Arriving in arinsal tomorrow. Looks to be blowing a gale pretty much most of the week, which is a shame.

Hopefully the winds ease off and the weather changes!
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rob.m wrote:
Arriving in arinsal tomorrow. Looks to be blowing a gale pretty much most of the week, which is a shame.

Hopefully the winds ease off and the weather changes!


It looks like Tuesday & Thursday will be the better days. If you have the option, go to Arcalis on Tuesday.
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We didn’t ski Thursday, all of Arinsal was closed. Loads of extra buses on to get across to Pal but we had a day shopping in Andorra La Vella.

Friday lower slopes open and yesterday was fantastic, all open including Pal link with conditions the best I’ve had in a long time.

Looks like another lovely day, sad to be waiting for transfer bus.
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I know Snowforecast.com is often over optimistic but it’s looking like the Pyrenees Orientales could get another cumulative dump of up to 50cm during the next 7-10 days! The season has definitely begun in time for school holidays, and my trip out in 3 weeks time!
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Boom. Ladies and Gentlemen, we appear to have a season.
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Crying or Very sad Vinyeta on the Baqueira "out-of-bounds" north face claimed yet another victim - a 31-year-old ski instructor at one of the local schools - on Saturday. 80cm of fresh snow; avvy risk was 4 Shocked

https://www.nevasport.com/noticias/art/56640/fallece-un-esquiador-atrapado-por-un-alud-en-baqueira-beret/

As always, take care out there.
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