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Resort recommendation for mid December

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Grateful if you guys could help me pick a resort for mid December (week starting 15th). I am thinking either Austria, Italy or France. Would like to do it affordably, and be confident about snow quality.

The one factor which is important is that I would like to go somewhere where I can go to a recommended boot fitter in resort. I have had my skiing experience ruined over the last 3-4 years because of poor fitting boots that I spent a fortune on in the UK. I want to make sure the next boot purchase does not go wrong.

Any suggestions on resort and boot fitter would be appreciated.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I went to Saalbach the first weekend of December last season and had a blast. We had fantastic snow and blue skies the whole time. Thoroughly impressed with the lift system and I'm thinking of heading back there in January.

This season start has not been as good as last year though, but they do have good snow making. Is booking a few days before the 15th an option? If so, you could simply book the resort with the best snow. Skullie
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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?
Cervinia has decent snow now.
Would be a good bet.
Don’t know about a bootfitter.
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 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
Livgno, St. Moritz, Obergurgl, Cervinia, and Tignes all have the pretty good snow right now.

Funny that you ask because I'm also going on the 15th
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
I'd leave it to last minute as well. Medium-long range weather forecasts are all over the place at the moment. Personally I had a good experience in Schladming mid-late December. Otherwise if you want to book early aim for high resorts as suggested.

No idea on a boot fitter, though I would imagine every major ski resort in Austria/FR/Italy/Switz will have one or two fitters that know exactly what they're talking about. You'll have to ask around once you've settled on your resort but I wouldn't let that be your main concern.
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Wait till the last moment, and then chose ...
Hintertux
Kaprun
Or Hemmel Hempstead.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I would concur about leaving a little while to decide where to go, the weather outlook is rather uncertain. Currently Cervinia seems to have the best conditions plus some of the other Italian resorts have good snow. Other places that are open are mainly relying on lots of snow making. Things could look somewhat different at the end of next week.

For boot fitting I would look for somewhere where most of the trade is from locals not tourists. For example in Kitzbühel, which is a reasonable sized town, the sports shops will sell most of their boots to local folk. If you go to somewhere which is pretty much only a ski station, say Obergurgl, the local trade for the sport shops will be very small. Even better would be a city such as Innsbruck but that is not so good from a holiday perspective. The bigger places will have enough trade to ensure they can support specialist boot fitters and can fix them if they need to. If you have an unlimited budget you could try Strolz in Lech who only supply custom boots http://www.strolzboots.com/.
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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!
@Bobab, I agree with those who have suggested leaving the decision for a week or so. The forecast seems to be for colder weather and a bit of snow. Pre-Christmas there should be plenty of accommodation available, so it's really just a question of whether to book the flight now - which of course would mean deciding which country and area to head for. Proximity to a glacier (e.g. Hintertux or Kitzsteinhorn) might give you peace of mind. (A couple of years ago we had a couple visiting us in Saalbach during the last week of November - they ended up having some local skiing, as the resort opened part of the area ahead of schedule for the last two weekends of November, and the other days they drove 25 minutes to the Kitzsteinhorn).

If Saalbach is under consideration (which I'm sure will depend on what the weather does in the next couple of weeks), Marcus Hagleitner of Hagleitners Sports Shop is renowned as a good boot fitter.

@scr, Let me know if you're looking for accommodation for the week beginning 12th January.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Thanks for the input all.

Not sure about Saalbach. Was there beginning not Jan last year and I feel like it may be a bit too low for December. And looks quite green at the moment.

The boot fitting issue is quite important, unless I just go to Protect in the UK. Not sure about going to Lech for Stoltz. Skeptical about custom boots generally as I suspect they are not as custom as they are made out to be. Spend 900£ on Dale boots 4 years ago and they have been terrible for me. My feet are very narrow at the back and then get wide quickly. The Dale boot fitter promised that this was something that the Dale boots could easily address, but he never managed it despite multiple visits. Terrible cramping and pain because he didn't adjust for my feet getting wide in the middle of my feet, and then when he did after a few visits, the entire back area of the bot was so wide I had zero control of the ski. I fell 4 times down my first run. And I hadn't fallen on skis once in he previous 6 weeks of skiing. Fractured hand and ligaments torn off my thumb bone.... Richard, the new Daleboot UK guy tried to remedy the boot best he could, at no cost, but still not great...

I was actually in The boot fitter you recommend in Saalbach with the Dales, asking him if he could help fit them better. He was less than complementary about the boots, and not particularly helpful. Made him cut me some J shaped foam for the hill. Took him 5 minutes. Cost me 20 euros....

Sorry that got a bit off topic. But my point is that I need a great boot fitter. It will either be profeet or another London shop, or in resort.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
As an aside to your boot problem, 20 years ago I was fitted Nordica Speed machine boots by a brilliant boot fitter in Val Thorens (relatively narrow heel, wide forefoot) 100 last.

In the interim have had various boots fitted by top boot fitters, with custom liners, all worked well but never perfect. I’m a difficult bug.

Was in local shop at end of last season when they had a 60% sale on and they had a pair of Nordica boots still with the speed machine brand 130 stiff. Tried them and they fitted beautifully. Bought them. Stock liners they’ve been great.

Try and find the last that fits you and stick to it!
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
As @BobinCH, and @Bobab, I've similar feet proportion with std/narrow heel, much wider forefoot. Been using Nordica boots for years, had the shell heat molded front and for high instep years ago.
They've been through a lot, had repair to buckels and inner pivot but still going.

They've been right from the start and will have to be replaced at some point, which I'm putting off.
I went through trying alot of boots before I got these with none coming close to my foot shape. This shell was the best start point and then adjusted for volume to suit as required. Created right volume and then used moulded foot bed. All done by much maligned S+R! Very Happy

Pick of destination for mid December, Cervinia. Already has snow and open, no experience of boot fitter there though.
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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.
Strolz make completely custom boots, its not just an inner that moulds itself to your foot shape when it is heated. They certainly put a lot of effort in and with a level of personalisation not available elsewhere. Whether this is worth the money (well beyond my budget) and how much is marketing hype "handcrafted in the cradle of skiing blah blah" I dont know. If you have unusual feet it might be worthwhile.
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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
The best boots I’ve found were a pair of Fischers I stumbled over in Oxfam for £20 - fit like a pair of comfy slippers.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@Bobab, have you tried Colin at Solutions 4 Feet? He's not in London, but in Bicester which isn't too far.
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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 can vouch for @hammerite's recommendation. I've used Colin to fit all my boots for over 20 years and have followed him around various locations. He's the best boot fitter I've come across and well worth the trip up from London. If you take the boots you're having problems with, you may even find he can fix them and save you the cost of new ones.


Last edited by Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name: on Fri 30-11-18 16:09; edited 1 time in total
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Val d'Isere.
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