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Les 3 Vallées 2019/20 - Courchevel, Meribel, Val Thorens etc

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Thanks!!!!!!!!!!
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
https://www.latania.co.uk/blog/2019/12/02/135cm-base-on-saulire-7-december-lift-openings-confirmed/

With 135cm on Saulire and a 65cm base in Courchevel 1850 the lift openings have been confirmed for opening day this Saturday, 7th December 2019 until 13 December (subject to the usual provisos regarding weather, safety, maintenance etc.).
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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?
at what point would the majority of runs open? i noticed on val thorens lift status a lot remain shut still?
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Weathercam wrote:
So had a cracking day yesterday with much better visibility and no wind, for the first hour or so seemed I had VT to myself !!

And was ripping untracked corduroy nigh on every descent.

Below VT, St Martin/Les Menuires and I suspect the other 3V resorts at lower altitude will need a substantial dump and or colder temps to make snow, still early yet though.

More here on how I got on with photos etc


@Weathercam would love to know what you think of the S Force Bolds too! They look good from the specs I’ve read Very Happy
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Off current topic apologies, but I am arriving alone into Moutiers train station from Lyon at 3pm on Saturday 28th December and need to get up to Mottaret.

I've found conflicting bus information online. Could any regular assist please? Are the buses frequent? Is there a free Shuttle bus?

Many thanks all
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@mancski, look at altibus.com . There is a 15.45 going from Moutiers to Mottaret.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
" Is there a free Shuttle bus?"

Unfortunately there's more chance of flying cochons... rolling eyes

We pay about €13 one way, from Moutiers to Val Thorens with Altibus. I imagine it will be a similar fare to Mottaret.
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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!
Thanks both.
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Does anyone know when the Cime Caron cable car at Val Thorens is likely to open? I didn’t get to ski the runs off that last season as it was closed when I was there.
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Nice sunny day here in the three valleys with links open across the whole area. The biggest queue was in Courchevel 1850 for the Chenus gondola and at Suisses chair but managed to avoid them. Looking forward to some new snow next week.
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Excellent conditions over the last 3 day. Friday- VT and Orelle open, though not to the top. Saturday and Sunday we parked up in Menuires and assumed there would be a modest amount of skiing open. In fact, there was far more than we could have wished for, on mostly quiet pistes-much quieter than VT. We were on about the fourth bubble up when Mont Vallon opened yesterday- hurtled down with the crazies. It was pretty hard on the bottom third. Did it again today and the snow was superb. Grand lac blue was open both days and today they opened the Granges chair. Allemands was a delight. The forecast dump for the next week should make the conditions superb. Very Happy
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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.
Thanks -arriving Friday so have webcams on loop!!!!
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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
Hmmmm - damp today up to about 2000m. Very windy up high (nothing open above Biollay in Courchevel). Top of Verdons was sleety but snow quite nice underfoot. Below the Croisette was most definitely damp, though pleasant enough skiing. The good news is cover is excellent for the time of year, and if anything the rain will help to create a good solid base (as long as it cools down in the next day or two)!
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@offpisteskiing, are the locals seeing a cooldown at all ? Looks pretty warm to me most of next week
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@kitenski, its looking pretty mild for the foreseeable sadly...
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Poster: A snowHead
I was out all last week and was generally quite good although some unusual piste openings. Some excellent powder on piste skiing in places with some light wind crust in places.. Mt Vallon was open last week for the first time in memory and was mainly small bumps and border ruts but lots on the Meribel side was closed (adret, altiport) most of the week. After heavy damp snow yesterday I thought it would be crusty but the upper pistes in Mottaret were excellent and only the run below pas du lac (aisle) was icy and cookies as normal. Rhodos sector generally cannon snow and not great but lapin and altiport quite good.
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Anyone know what Le Kudeta has been changed to over in 1850?
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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?
Surprisingly reasonable up high in Courchevel today with a mix of slightly heavy soft, and some good smooth wind-buff as well.





Foehny today and links between valleys were not all running - looks like it will be breezy again tomorrow then calm down on Wednesday - possibly some precip on the horizon for Friday starting at 1900m and then dropping lower - time will tell!
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Hey all, what the best way to drive up to VT from Moutiers - D117 or D96? Google says D96 is generally slower, how is it in practice?
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@Oleski, most people, including me, will use the D117 as its a better road.

Occasionally for a change I will use the D96, it's a nice drive with some narrow sections and drops that can be a bit unnerving if there is snow or ice on the road - there are also some very tight hairpins that a long vehicle would have difficulty with.
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@andy1234, thanks. I am assuming then Carrefour is the most convenient fuel/shop stop before the last push? Super U being on D96
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@Oleski, yes Carrefour Moutiers is easy for everything, take exit 39 and then right at the little roundabout, then next left and second right. To join the D117 it's basically straight on, leaving the Carrefour entrance on your left. If youre not sure use navigation on your phone. Have fun!
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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!
@andy1234, thanks, hope we will make it there before it closes
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Heading out to VT this Saturday for Christmas week. Looks like plenty of snow in the forecast especially on Sunday which is shaping up to be a tad wild. Mate who is there this week is reporting good snow especially at altitude, but quite grey/overcast and some links have been closed due to wind. Is there much agreement on how the rest of the next week is shaping up? From my limited reading of the charts it’s looks like it will stay cold with snow potential through the week. Main concern now there is plenty of snow is wind disruption!
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munter wrote:
Heading out to VT this Saturday for Christmas week. Looks like plenty of snow in the forecast especially on Sunday which is shaping up to be a tad wild. Mate who is there this week is reporting good snow especially at altitude, but quite grey/overcast and some links have been closed due to wind. Is there much agreement on how the rest of the next week is shaping up? From my limited reading of the charts it’s looks like it will stay cold with snow potential through the week. Main concern now there is plenty of snow is wind disruption!


Hi Munter,

I will be going to VT this Saturday too and having the same concerns as you, the wind is looking unforgiving on the Sunday. I suspect this is also the reason why most of the blacks are not open yet. (Judging from the webcam footage the Combe de Caron is rather rocky).

Might bump into you next week!
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@munter, Bergfex (ECM) shows high winds, however Meteo France (AROME) and Snow Forecast (GFS) disagree, so we will have to wait and see

@garricw, It doesn't look like Cime Caron is going to open this season anyway?

We are in VT for Xmas and NY, so may bump into someone snowHead
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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.
@Oleski oh really! i thought the cable was repaired in the summer and will be up and running this winter?
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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
@garricw, I actually don't know, the news have been very sketchy. I assumed they haven't open it because it isn't repaired yet, but I may be wrong and it's due to lack of snow. Would we nice if they do.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Pistes are in pretty good shape generally though a bit thin in places low down now.
Off piste there is a 'window' of good snow to be found... up high has been blown apart pretty severely by the Foehn, and below 2200m it quickly gets heavy, but the sheltered gullies and bowls have some smooth snow hiding in them, with a cm or two last night blown around for good measure too.

We gambled that the winds would ease off today and so it turned out!









Finished the day with a quick lap under the cables in Courchevel on fairly smooth wind-buff.



As far as I can see it is anyone's guess as to what happens at the weekend weather-wise.

re Caron last I heard it was due to open in the next week or two...
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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 asked Val Thorens Twitter and they said Come Caron is going through the last round of control tests and should open in the next few days.

And so we can only wait and see
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@garricw, that's great ⛷️
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
We've been in Val Thorens since Monday and are making the most of skiing in a hurricane, with gusts of 75kmph at the summits. Shocked

Snow conditions have been excellent so far, though visibility/definition has been tricky at times. However, we did have a fantastic, sunny afternoon at Orelle yesterday, with deserted slopes of packed powder. There was also some nice untracked stuff at the sides but we didn't venture more than a few feet off piste in view of lurking rocks...

Today is probably the windiest day so far, when we've been blown to a standstill on a blue run! Nevertheless, there is still great skiing to be had and we are really enjoying ourselves. We did consider skiing down to Les Menuires this morning but thought better of it, in case we are stuck there. Bruyeres 2 is off (due to wind) and although Mont De La Chambre chair is running we are concerned that that could close at any time.

Moutiere chair is off, due to wind, as is Boismint (though Plan De L'Eau is running). Peclet gondola is the pick of the bunch, to get some shelter. The snow on the Peclet runs was great, with the odd wind-blown patch.

Our favourite run today was 4 Vents. By the time we reached the 3 Vallees covered lift at 2pm they were restricting it to Meribel guests only, as they were about to close it as the wind was even worse. When asked, we told the liftie we were staying in Meribel and managed a sneaky run down the deserted 4 Vents, on great snow, before heading back along the Montaulever traverse back to VT. We had to skate downhill into a fierce headwind on the way home; and in a scientific test I turned round and pointed my skis back up the run. I was blown back up it! Very Happy Survival skiing at its best!

By then, most lifts were closed and we saw a lot of folk being turned back from Plein Sud (to walk back up) when it closed at 2.30. So, rather than run the risk of being stuck at the bottom of the town, we called it a day.

Hopefully things will settle down before we depart (on Saturday pm) but we aren't holding our breath. rolling eyes
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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?
^^ @ Bergmeister Laughing This is called karma...

I thought you were brave advising someone the following on Page 1:
Bergmeister wrote:
The 3 Valleys links will be open for your December trip. You will have no problems! Very Happy

Right after I'd said:
Raceplate wrote:
Last year at that time the top lifts and 3V links were closed due to high winds and too much snow!

Bruyeres 2 isn't shut because of wind. It's had a sign on it all week saying it won't open until Sat 21st (for Xmas). Whilst I understand your trepidation at leaving VT, I think the chance of the Cote Brune being shut due to wind is very low so you should always be able to get home. The general risk with links being shut is far more towards people from Courchevel and Meribel not being able to get out of the Belleville valley rather than the other way round. The Roc de Tougne chair out of Mottaret was running today when Tougnete 2 and Platieres were shut (due to wind) and VT people were being told to go home via that, Granges and the Cote Brune.

For those that aren't stuck in VT with the not unusual December wind-blown half-the-lifts-shut moonscape misery, there's plenty of good skiing available all over the rest of the 3V's. The west side of Meribel is as good as you'll ever ski it with most runs that are normally chopped up or slushy through the trees relatively smooth and totally deserted. Overall the conditions are super variable, everything from straight boiler plate to lumpy crud, sugar on top and rank Spring slush. Wind's moving around a lot so what's calm one day is wind blown the next.

Snow is forecast tomorrow so that "should" lower the amount of wind but it didn't last December so let's see.
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Raceplate,

It's the first time we've had a problem with wind closures in number of December trips to Val T. The last time we suffered wind closures was in Meribel in December 2016.

Good to see you enjoy a bit of schadenfreude, mind... rolling eyes I was only offering advice based on our experience to date; and talking about snow conditions, not wind.

Despite the wind, the snow conditions on piste this week have been as good as it gets, with plenty of sheltered skiing. So it hasn't been all bad. wink
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Some snow reports from Courchevel and Meribel for y'all. Pretty windy here this morning another storm incoming Smile


https://www.merinet.com/snow/what-are-the-snow-conditions-in-the-lead-up-to-christmas-in-meribel-meribel-valley-731418

https://www.seecourchevel.com/snow/what-are-the-snow-conditions-like-in-the-lead-up-to-christmas-in-courchevel-courchevel-valley-731420
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@Bergmeister So that's the links shut in December 2016, 2018 and 2019 due to high winds. 3 out of 4 or 75%.

And I've already had the tweet from the 3V app to say they're closed today and the freezing level is too high for snow in LT, it's gonna rain. At least you'll have snow in VT even if it is coming in sideways.

I feel a €40 lunch coming on... wink
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Looks like the Cime Caron running around last. Showing as open today. Hopefully now fixed for season!!
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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!
All lifts were off yesterday in VT (except the beginners carpets) Sad

But today made up for it - big style - with a foot of powder. Wow! What a morning!

Unfortunately we had to call it a day at 1.30pm, for our bus back to Geneva, but before then we managed some great laps off Plein Sud, Cairn and 3 Vallees lifts. We stayed where the visibility was half decent and followed the breaks in the clouds. There were still unlimited fresh tracks to be had so it was a shame to finish early - but at least we finished our trip in style Very Happy .

And of course the sun came out fully as soon as we packed in. Grrrr.... rolling eyes
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Snowing hard in VT, if tomorrow anything opens, it will be epiiic snowHead
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Has anyone skied the new Daguet and Villages run down to Raffort or even Les Allues yet?

oleski Have fun !!
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