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Intro to Off Piste

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi all. Any recommendations for a 3-4 day intro to off-piste course in the Alps (including avalanche awareness/equipment training) for dad and 13yo son, aiming for Xmas/NY 2020/21 (so next season)? Assume we'll have to go private as group courses don't seem keen on younger teenagers mixing with adults (but happy to be corrected). Googling generates a range of results, but any particularly good experiences out there? Both of us are 7s per inside out (although lad has a much, much higher ceiling Sad ); neither of us have really ventured beyond a bit of side piste. Flexible as to resort, but mild preference for Chamonix/Courmayeur or 3Vs, as I know the scene there. Would self cater.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I did an off piste introduction with Snoworks and thought it was pretty good. These are group courses and they are likely fine for your son too, though you could always just call them to ask about that. They’re very friendly and helpful on the telephone. The course that I did was 5 days in Tignes just before Christmas, but I think they run 3V courses too.
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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?
yes snoworks have intro to off piste usually half day courses. you should be able to do them in either tignes or la tania (3vs) at that time of year. I'd check but dont think they have age restrictions and will provide safety equipment and training.
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 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
This is an old post but in case someone else comes along looking for similar info: try the UCPA. They will take all ages for a very good rate. They also have intro courses. All instructors are either instructors or guides. Les Contamines UCPA and town very pleasant. Action Outdoors are the UK reseller and are excellent.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Minimum age for UCPA (Action Outdoors) is 18, apart from family weeks. I guess they do some kind of instruction on the family weeks, but not the same as the intro to offpiste (which I’ve done and really enjoyed).

I’m sure I asked Snoworks whether children can join their 1-week all terrain courses and the answer was no (they offered the junior race carve). At least that’s what I recall. Might be wrong. Might be different for a half-day course.

Best bet could be a private instructor/guide.

Interested to hear if you find anything.
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
@Themasterpiece, not true actually, at UCPA the season before last there were kids: they can't drink and have to sign in/out etc but it is possible.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@boobleblooble, do you know the children were on courses too, or perhaps the families had booked accommodation only?

The age policy seems pretty clear https://www.action-outdoors.co.uk/winter/find-your-holiday/holiday-types/trips-for-all-ages/summary.
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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!
@Themasterpiece, yes they were on the intro to off-piste week with me last year, at UCPA Les Contamines.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
boobleblooble wrote:
@Themasterpiece, yes they were on the intro to off-piste week with me last year, at UCPA Les Contamines.


Where were they from (French?)? Would love to take my son on one.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Odd that any training provider would exclude youngsters/teenagers. Learning both ski technique and avalanche awareness at an early age looks like a positive to me.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
@Themasterpiece, Frenchies. Try contacting UCPA direct perhaps? It was during the French holidays.
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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.
Belated thanks to all. School term times and xmas family visits meant that none of the group courses would suit, even if they were willing to take youngsters. So indeed we've decided to go fully private (with Parallel Lines in the 3Vs, who I've used many times over the years), which is very--eyewatering, even--spendy, but means I get to set the curriculum over 4 full days of instruction. Am smugly pleased with myself though, having secured an extra few days hard skiing with the lad (his brothers are decidedly less keen, and the less said about mom's enthusiasm, the better), all in the name of safety, so really it would be irresponsible not to do this. Smile
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