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Easter in Courchevel?? (1st week Apr)

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Is this a good idea? I've never skied this late in the season before. We are restricted to school holidays and want to avoid half term as ours clashes with lots of France. We'd love to go back to courchevel although may not be able to afford our pre kids 1850 catered chalets - those days are long gone! Very Happy
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@breeze11, if you mean 1-8 Apr, or thereabouts, that's a very good idea I think. 2018 French Easter school holidays don't start until the week after. Snow conditions usually reliable in 3V early April. Even in a poor year, Courchevel, Mottaret, Val Thorens hold up well. 1550 and 1650 tend to have better value accommodation if you specifically want Courchevel. Some advantages to staying in Meribel valley for access to all parts of 3V.
Some of the best skiing I've ever had has been in April, especially in recent seasons.
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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?
@breeze11, we have been there that time of year before. We stayed in 1550, but used the lift to both upload and download as the run down from1850 was ratty patchy and decided we would rather extra runs higher up on the better snow. We also found Meribel very slushy, so went back to Courchevel side, though others who had pushed on to get to Val Thorens found conditions good or there.

In short I have skied a number of places in April now (up to and including flying out mid April) and Courchevel is on the list of ones I would happily return to.
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I think you'll be fine. Yes things get mushy towards the end if the day, but stay high. I also find that the upper slopes above Courch 1650 stay remarkably nice at that time of year, and there's always VT . Though sometimes it's good to be counterintuitive and go in the opposite direction-I recall on a warm April day hurtling down Folyeres (the blue run into La Tania) mid/late morning. Not a soul in sight on a perfect piste with no mush. Bliss!
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@breeze11, I have done Courcheval a couple times at Easter, usually when Easter is much later than next year and had really good skiing. A couple of times we stayed in 1300 where we caught the telecabine up and down but even managed to ski down one day after one of those massive dumps you get around the equinox. Another time we stayed in 1650 when it was very, very warm. Even quite high up there would be huge puddles of melt water to try an water ski over. It got very tiring during the afternoon.

In my experience Easter has much better snow than Christmas and New Year with few lift queues and often good weather. Easter was quite late this year and the bottom slopes in Les Arcs were thinning alot and they closed some sections, but as we followed the spring snow around the mountain we had a fantastic time. Of course having good Friday and the bank holiday monday means you can get a lot of skiing in without having to take too much holiday. IIRC we got 9 days skiing for only 3 days off work.

The main warning however is not the snow cover but the sun. Use at least factor 50 sun protection and even then try and cover up as much as possible. I thought I had come back looking beach blond due to the sun bleaching my hair.
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@breeze11,
good choice I reckon
I've had excellent late season condition in Courchevel
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Thank you all for your replies. Really helpful. That's decision made I think!

X
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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!
We were in 1650 this year for that same week.
While the runs back to 1650 barely stayed open (we were skiing on mush that thinned to a strip about 10 metres wide in the end!) higher up was some wonderful skiing.
The runs above 2000m were brilliant. Creux first thing was quiet and perfectly groomed and the Pyramides runs were immaculate.
The kids, who skied with NewGen, even found some great snow over in Meribel.

You do have to follow the conditions somewhat, but if you ski as much as you can in the morning, then relax in the sun and potter about in the afternoon, it's wonderful.
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By the way, I understand that they are re-working the 1650 lift system this summer, and adding a lot more snow cannons on the home runs.
This winter those home runs should be better than they were last winter.
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So would you choose 1650 over 1550 then? I don't think we'll go down as far as La Tania that late in the year. I will also look at 1850 but I think anything self catering up there will be out of our price range. I also seem to remember you can't take your car into 1850 - not ideal with the kids and the amount of stuff we travel with these days! Very Happy
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So would you choose 1650 over 1550 then? I don't think we'll go down as far as La Tania that late in the year. I will also look at 1850 but I think anything self catering up there will be out of our price range. I also seem to remember you can't take your car into 1850 - not ideal with the kids and the amount of stuff we travel with these days! Very Happy
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Quote:

So would you choose 1650 over 1550 then?

What level of skiers are in your group and what kind of skiing do you all like/dislike?
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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
1550 gives you access to the gondola which takes you straight up to 1850 where you can then get onto one of three main lifts up (from memory). You can use that same lift to download at the end of the day if conditions lower down aren't the best. It is cheaper than both 1850 and 1650 from our experience, but look at what deals are available.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Quote:

I also seem to remember you can't take your car into 1850

Oddly I remember parking many times in the mult story car park in the summmer in Courchevel 1850 in the summer. Is it closed for the winter season?
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
We skied that week this year. We have really warm conditions - blue skies and no wind, in fact it was almost too hot at times.

Snow conditions were good early, but Creus by half 11 was prtty chopped up and difficult. The Saulire run all day was pretty good.

We stayed in La Tania and were downloading by about the 3rd day as the Foly run home was patchy and then just not nice.

They moved all of the lessons from La Tania because the village was bare.

We would do it again - goo weather, decent snow early and longer days!
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
It ace out there in April, lovely and warm with plenty of snow. You can alway hop over to VT for colder conditions. Will be great to see the new lift in at 1650. but you can get straight up into 1850 quicker from 1550. Highly recommend beginning of April.

P.s. if you are looking for decent ski rental this little British run ski shop is great http://whitestorm.fr/
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Ok, I have a new question about 1550. Who did you book with?? Homeaway have about 4 appartements in our price bracket (ideally under £1000 for self catering accommodation). I've also tried owners direct (same as home away?) and booking.com. Happy to book through an agent as long as we can drive ourselves.
Any ideas?
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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?
@breeze11, I take it you tried the tourist office first. If Courchevel is anyting like Les Arcs Vacancies will not be announced until the autumn.
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@breeze11, it was along time ago but we booked with Inghams. Think Ski total have chalets.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Thanks both!
I will have another look at inghams and I haven't tried ski total.

Autumn??!!! But that's ages away! I will have a look now. Thank you!
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@breeze11, 1550 (or Courchevel Village as I think they like to call it now) is great if you are near the centre, i.e. within walking distance of the Grangettes bubble. If you are further away, e.g. up the hill in Brigues, it is okay if there is enough snow on the Brigues and Deviation pistes below 1850 to ski out from / back to somewhere relatively close to your accommodation, but if there is little/no snow you may need to get the bus.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@ecureuil that's an excellent tip! I've been wondering about this. I think we will aim to get somewhere up near the bubble. This now limits my homeaway search to 2 properties! Very Happy
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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!
@ecureuil that's an excellent tip! I've been wondering about this. I think we will aim to get somewhere up near the bubble. This now limits my homeaway search to 2 properties! Very Happy
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