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Grand Massif 2018/2019 snow report, Les Carroz, Flaine, Samoens, Morillon & Sixt

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
hi all - we are heading to Samoens on the 17th so there for mid-term break. Have never done mid-term before so looking for any tips to avoid mid-term Qs- or at least minimise time spent in them don't think it is possible to avoid them! We only have 2 of 6 kids in lessons (2 families!) and lesson not until afternoon so no need to meet up with ski school in the morning. How early do we need to get to the Grand Massif Express in the morning? Are Qs much less after 10:00am? Planning to picnic on the mountain hopefully and avoid lunchtime restaurants. What is it like getting back down the Grand Massif in the evening - more madness??
Any tips gratefully received!
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Quote:

Does anyone know what is going on with the Sairon chair at Morillon?

Ive been in samoens since Friday and it was working everyday, but I had heard rumours there were issues with it.
Beautiful conditions today. Extremely busy at times, and Tete Dr Saix was terrible at home time. Huge moguls and so many people in one place.
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Simone, I think the GME queue will be better after 10.00 as you should miss morning ski school crowds. I would check out both and fear the worse. If you are driving you could check out the Sais lift at Vercland. Bus goes there as well. Its ancient and only takes four people (seriously unpleasant with four adults I'm my opinion) so could be busy. It does meant thought that you could bypass end of day queues at GME - they will be big - by skiing all the way down if skilll levels allow. As mentioned above try not to be at Tete de saix at sometime. Top of Perce beige has been greatly widened but will be horrible at that time. Cant really bring you better news.

Good luck. Rather you than me!
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Thanks@ian999. Looking forward to the ski-night but kind of dreading the crowds , have not done mid term in a long time but no choice this year. We have a car so driving to Vercland is an option. Skiing back down there in the evening and gett8ng the bus might be preferable to queuing to get down the Grand Massif - how difficult is the run down to the bottom? At least it looks like it will be sunny next week, just hopefully not too chopped u0 in the afternoons Confused
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
In past few years the Inter and Grand Cret blacks (which tended to get boilerplate ice) have been replaced and the runs down remodelled. Very picturesque run, albeit still some variable snow at the lower end. Think snow cannons installed at that point.
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There will be a queue at the GME forming by 0830 and by 0845 it will be huge. Vercland is the best way up the mountain during half-term weeks. Best to park up there too to avoid relying on the infrequent busses. If you leave it until 1000 to go up then there will be a huge queue at the Chariande Express and also at the Vernant chair to get to Flaine.
The queue down the GME in the evening will also be enormous - 45 mins or more - Vercland wins again. The run down to Vercland, despite the remodelling, late afternoon will be very icy and full of moguls. Really bad idea for beginners and can also be tricky for anyone else! Take the gondola down instead.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Another route down to base is to Morillon village, either piste, if available snow cover, or telecabine which can be less crowded than Samöens.

Check bus connection from Morillon to Samöens though to assess if possible 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!
First timer also in GM next week.
We are staying in sixt - is cascades a viable return route at the end of the day (if open) ? Kids are in ski school until 4.45 at samoens so not sure it possible to get to it before closing
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You (definitely!) won't be able to get from Samoens to the top of Cascades leaving at 4.45pm!
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thanks for the advice - thinking we will try to pile into the car and get to Verclad - not easy with skis and boots - can hear the moaning teenagers already!
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denfinella wrote:
You (definitely!) won't be able to get from Samoens to the top of Cascades leaving at 4.45pm!


mmm. now that I look at the piste map it does seem to involve about 5 lifts and a lot of pistes to get to the start !
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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.
@melandnick, I've been to the GM 8 times, did the cascades once, felt it was a waste of half a day TBH, first bit OK, then after that nothing to shout about, apart from the length and time it takes. As other Ave said ne careful of your timings, you don't want to be caught in the Flaine sector and not be able to get back to your side of the mountain, it's a long ( and expensive) way round.
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Arrived last night and skied today. Total spring conditions and was really good.

Snow in great condition in the morning. Had the kids with us so didn’t do anything too taxing. Skied to morillon and back down char and dahu down to Samoens.

Quite busy - first pitch off tete de saix was a bun fight but apart from that all good.

V warm this afternoon. Lots of t shirts in evidence at 1600 around lunch as we downloaded and t shirt weather all afternoon. Great day.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Quick question- we arrive into Lyon airport tomorrow morning to drive up to samoens. Want to do a supermarket shop en route as self catering. Will probably get out of the airport at 11:00 so if we wait to get close to resort the supermarkets will be closed - all close at 12:30. Anyone know of one we could hit within an hour of the airport en route to the Grand Massif.

Great to hear snow is good - just hope not too warm and snow stays put!
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Simone, the big Super-U in Magland (between Cluses and Sallanches, just by the turning to Les carroz/Flaine) is open all day tomorrow as ouverture exceptionnelle for the vacances. Until 19.00 from memory, but could be 19.30.

Just checked online and there is nothing about it, but they had a huge banner outside last week saying they were open all day 10th, 17th and 24th.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Thanks@ sj1608, knew someone would be able to help Very Happy Love Snowheads for all the advice and info- going to jot down all the restaurant information people have left on earlier pages. Now just to get packing sorted - as least with warm weather can pack light Very Happy snowHead
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Carrefour in Cluses is massive and usually open till 8.
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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?
@Simone, pack for spring. I’m at 2,000m having a beer right now in my t-shirt. It’s lovely.

And cold at night so the pistes are in great shape. At least above 1,500m Happy
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Absolutely. Got a couple of hours in this morning before friends arrived and skied cascades which was in great shape. Soft at the bottom but not too bad.

On the terrace now in t shirt and shorts and it’s so warm. Lovely.
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@BAN, Carrefour only open until 12.30 on a Sunday and last week they were not advertising that they would be doing anything in the way of 'overture exceptionelle' for the vacances.
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OK. Never shopped there on a Sunday. Comprehensive other days, though.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
In honesty, I’m in Chamonix but only a couple of valleys over.
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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!
First day of half term madness. Snow in really super condition considering the warmth. Lovely skiing.

Crowds not too bad considering. However with the main exception being the first pitch down from tete des saix to perce niege. What a total car crash that is. Over crowded and people falling everywhere.

Great snow though.
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Lovely week but crazy queues. Snow holding up ok despite the warm weather.
Anyone know why ‘corne’ red is closed under coulouvrier? Apparently been closed all season
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melandnick wrote:
Lovely week but crazy queues. Snow holding up ok despite the warm weather.
Anyone know why ‘corne’ red is closed under coulouvrier? Apparently been closed all season


Yes - the pisteurs are worried that there are too many intermidiots (both French and Foreign) that would require assistance during the busy half-term week. I skied it today as part of my ESF guided Off-piste class. Moguls, moguls and more moguls. Plenty of snow though, hence I asked about the closure and our ESF guide explained.

Off-piste snow on Northern Slopes is still great (if you know where to find it). Gers is still great.
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Thinking of a trip.to Flaine today as we've never been .. is it too over crowded this week or ok? Not had to wait much so far in Megeve, Argentiere, Le Tour or Espace Diamante .. be a bummer to drive a hour to wait in lift queues for busy 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.
@cheburator,
That’s interesting about the new red. Does corne begin at the top of a Samoens or Morillon?
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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
@Freestyle, it's from the samoens side, off the side of marmottes and if you do it stick to the left on the first pitch as there is the odd rock or three, on the right, the rest is super. The other new red starts from the morillon side and the steep bit is a bit like a slalom of fallen over people. Skis and sticks!!!

As said above lots of very nice, and quite deep powder on North facing stuff, some of it surprisingly quite low down as well, anything South rattles your teeth early on.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@bpirkle, it's rather busy, you will be in queues, unless it's lunchtime when they will be only a few minutes, but peak times it can be a bit slow
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Had stopped on the side of char today letting a nervous friend go first when 3 idiots came flying back on on the piste from off the side. Super fast and out of control. Lots of air - the first one stacked it on landing and slid past me. Second one landed just in front of me and just managed to miss me.

I gave one of them some grief but my French is too poor to make a big point.

Dread to think what would have happened if they would have hit anyone as were going full tilt.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Sat in Flaine Forum having a beer, after yet another day of glorious sun. Never seen a cloud all week.

The bad news - the white stuff is disappearing fast, a lot of terra ferma is starting to appear off piste and it won’t be long before it starts disappearing on piste.

We were down the other side this morning and a thermometer on the lift was reading 16 degrees.
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
In Samoens last week it was reading 19dgs! I like a bit of sunshine, but that is too much for February! We loved our first visit to Morillon/Grand Massif. Half term queues were not as bad as I expected, though found bottle necks at links to Flaine rather tedious. Was surprised at the amount of terrible / out of control skiers though, esp coming down Perce Neige. After leaving it too late to book with ESI, was pleased to find that ESF were surprisingly good, we were really lucky that there were only 8 kids in Etoile D'or and 9 in 3* - I saw some groups with what looked like about 14 children!
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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?
Really busy, lots of bumped up pistes, off piste if you know where to look is still very nice, still finding powder in these temps!! look north as they say. There is still a deep base, so will be ok for a while yet, just it is seriously concrete like first thing and to get to some of the nice stuff you have to endure refrozen crud to get there!
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just back from a week in samoens - what a week of weather! Snow in pretty good condition as well - getting chopped up in the afternoon on the busy slopes and sugary and chopped in the sunny busy slopes!. Snow in Flaine and slopes above 1500m very good even up to Saturday afternoon. On advice from this forum we drove to Verclad every morning and avoided the Qs also no Q in the evening to get back down to Verclad so very handy. Les Tete de Saix is a nightmare - coming done there in the afternoon I felt we were taking our life in our hands particularly if close to 4pm (not bad in the am) Too many people on it and v v chopped with some skiers going too fast. I guess that just happens in mid-term week - tried to avoid it when we could. Great week all round , slopes a bit busy at times but expected it with mid term and Qs not too bad. Thanks for all the advice!
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Heading out Wednesday AM and can't wait - any Snowheads out there at the moment? Conditions looking good?
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@maidstone98, Sunny day yesterday; hard packed snow all over. Slush late afternoon.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Samoens closed today though due to the storm.
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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!
In fact all GME closed. 80kmh winds at top.
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yep all shut, husband not happy at loosing a day of skiing, they have gone into Geneva on a day trip instead
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What’s the weather like in the GM at the moment? Is it raining or snow?
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