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Skiing in resorts during world championships, snowHeads ski forum
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Skiing in resorts during world championships

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
We've been going to the Three Valleys for many years, usually in La Tania, and are just back from there yesterday. I am already arranging our trip for HT2023, and would have paid a deposit for our chalet in La Tania today but for the fact that the 2023 FIS world championships are being held throughout half term next year. While I love watching alpine sport as much as anyone and I am sure it would be a blast to see it up close on pistes I've skied myself:

1. has anyone attempted a skiing holiday at a big resort whilst it was hosting a major event?
2. would you do it again?

Some background in an attempt to stave off obvious questions: the 3Vs are the perfect resort* for my large party (18 pax) of wildly differing abilities (perpetual beginners to experts), interests (coffee stops/off piste/mile munchers), and opportunities to ski (for many this is their only trip of the year). We like that we know the routes, the restaurants, the instructors, the terrain, the time-of-day dependent piste conditions, and the overall set up; we have the logistics down to a science; and we have a lot of traditions that would be impossible to replicate elsewhere. We are unfortunately locked into February half term (and none of Xmas/NY/Easter work in 2023).

In the spirit of full disclosure, I am hoping the answer will be "don't worry about it". Obviously we're used to crowds--we ski at half term after all--but if the event infrastructure and associated faff make it impracticable to ski because, for example, it is impossible to get up the mountain because your only local lift drops you off at an obvious free viewing spot for the GS, then we will very, very reluctantly consider somewhere else.

* Only the PDS comes close (we used to go there) and for the reasons set out in my recent Veysonnaz trip report, the 4Vs wouldn't work for this group (as much as I enjoyed it personally); I'm not (yet) looking for alternatives.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Dyrlac wrote:
... but if the event infrastructure and associated faff make it impracticable to ski because, for example, it is impossible to get up the mountain because your only local lift drops you off at an obvious free viewing spot for the GS

I wouldn't expect viewing spots on the mountain to be "free", I would expect that people would need a full lift pass to get up the hill. FIS rules only require spectators to be able to get to the finish area.

When we had the British Championships in Meribel the warmup areas were only in use before the lifts opened to the public at 9:00, similar when I have raced on the Courchevel stade.
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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?
@Dyrlac, we live in Wengen, and every January we have the Lauberhorn World Cup ski races. It’s really not a problem. The village is full of media / ski teams / coaches, and they don’t ski (much). So it’s a good time to be skiing in the village, as lots of beds are occupied by people who aren’t skiing.

Don’t worry about it Very Happy
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@Dyrlac, We had the European Women's Downhill in Crans at the weekend. Same as pre-COVID but less manic. Various pistes closed for the week before. Parking a pain on the day. You could drop into the viewing if you were competent in the forest.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
I skied in Vail and Beaver Creek during the 2015 World Champs.

Pros

- Bib and medal ceremonies in town every night

- Opportunity to see Anna Fenninger in the flesh

- Gigs every afternoon and night. Saw Spearhead, Barenaked Ladies, Ceelo Green, Mixmaster Mike and others.

- Free swag

- Runs actually less busy

Cons

A bit of piste naziing near the finish stadium. Parking a bit trickier
The only event I actually bothered going in stadium for saw Hirscher ski out 5 gates from the bottom in a blizzard.
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Thanks everyone, that's what I wanted to hear (so I guess I should be suspicious wink ). We don't drive, so parking is not our problem. Traffic on our arrival day (Men's Slalom in Courchevel) is likely to be sketchy I guess as our route takes us past La Praz.

rjs wrote:

I wouldn't expect viewing spots on the mountain to be "free", I would expect that people would need a full lift pass to get up the hill. FIS rules only require spectators to be able to get to the finish area.

When we had the British Championships in Meribel the warmup areas were only in use before the lifts opened to the public at 9:00, similar when I have raced on the Courchevel stade.


This is pretty funny. It would never even occur to me to be in the mountains without a lift pass (or a bicycle), so to me it was obvious that the spectators would want to get up the hill. Very Happy

telford_mike wrote:
@Dyrlac, we live in Wengen, and every January we have the Lauberhorn World Cup ski races. It’s really not a problem. The village is full of media / ski teams / coaches, and they don’t ski (much). So it’s a good time to be skiing in the village, as lots of beds are occupied by people who aren’t skiing.


Also a good point!

Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
- Free swag


Now we're talking. snowHead
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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 have been on few World Championships but not as tourist, so I honestly don't have info from your point of view but still. Race courses are of course all closed, and some additional courses are closed for training/warmup. On lifts around race course, racers, coaches, servicemen and media has priority access, which means you will most likely wait a bit longer. For everything else, then it depends how big resorts is. I haven't been in La Tania so I can't say for that, but in all places where I have been during WCH, most of resort was normally open and operational, so personally I wouldn't worry much about this. As someone already said, we don't ski much during these times, as we are all there for different reasons then skiing.
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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!
Dyrlac wrote:
It would never even occur to me to be in the mountains without a lift pass (or a bicycle), so to me it was obvious that the spectators would want to get up the hill.

I don't think you are typical of race spectators.

There are only a couple of places in Meribel that you can see the course, bottom of the Cherferie lift and top of the Roc de Fer lift, there is a new tunnel under the piste between them, neither give a particularly good view. The Courchevel piste is new so I don't know about that.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
I was in St Anton for a world cup race years ago (Ron Duncan, Bell Bros era).
Race was postponed due to lack of snow, it snowed, race on, Austrian army were sidestepping up hill to batter it down, it got windy, snow blew off, race off, it snowed, race on, it snowed a hell of a lot more: race off.

Boris`s girlfriend was staying in the chalet I was in, so he was a regular dinner guest: I had no clue who he was, although the chalet girls managed to give him dinner the first evening, and miss me out!
Both of the Bell brothers visited during the week.
Found a pair of 220 race skis with derbyflex mounts by the front door one day, that makes you feel inadequate.

Bookies stalls for the race would rival a horse race.

Six of us ended up stuck in Lech one night when the Flexen pass was closed by avalanche risk; that had the ski girls in a panic come dinner and a half empty table, it was pre mobile phones, so relay messages via UK.

I was in Flaine when the main slope was closed off for a downhill mountain bike race; as it was darn near the only thing with snow on, that was a bigger pain.

I used to go to Val D`isere for my birthday, which generally fell the week after the world cup race, remember that they ice the course for the race. It can be a little unpleasant in places.
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
@Dyrlac,
I was doing a season in Tignes when Val D'Isere held the 2009 World Championship.
Was busier than it would have been - they ran free buses up from Bourg-Saint-Maurice for people to park down there. The runs used were shut to the public for the duration. To watch piste-side you needed a liftpass, but no ticket. Don't know if finish areas were ticket only - I was happy to watch piste-side - nor if you had to pay to enter the finish areas.
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
I skied the eclipse piste last week, there’s a few spaces you could stand and watch, the biggest area is likely to be the bouc blanc restaurant area and above which is near the top. Then I would imagine the green a bit lower down.

It depends how much extra netting gets put up and what gets closed
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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.
@Kenzie, I was there the week after the 2009 WC at Val. On mountain prices had jumped to twice the price. Had feeling the Russians were more important than Brits as menus were in French, Russian, Japanese then English. Thought the prices were in Roubles not Euros. Favourite restaurant (Edelweis at Le Fornet) rammed every day, so was Trifolet for pizza lunch. Val d'Isere pistes were not so busy, one or two lifts had phenomenal queues (Bellevarde and Aero in Tignes) and I had a great holiday in a VIP Chalet just off Santons piste. However, I got the impression (even the saisonnaires) most of the resort staff were indifferent, unwelcoming, and ready for the end of season parties. Overall impression was that the resort had gone to the dogs. I've never been back.
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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
On 2 occasions, I've been staying in Val Claret, when the Downhill was held down to La Daille.

It was a great experience, as you could watch from the side of the Piste; or ski down to La Daille and sit in a Restaurant having a Beer/Coffee, while watching the Racers come over the finishing line. I also seem to remember having lunch on the sunny terrace of the Grand Paradis, while WC Racers stumped in and out, as they were staying there.

Wonderful atmosphere.


Last edited by 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 on Tue 22-02-22 13:02; edited 3 times in total
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
rjs wrote:

There are only a couple of places in Meribel that you can see the course, bottom of the Cherferie lift and top of the Roc de Fer lift, there is a new tunnel under the piste between them, neither give a particularly good view. The Courchevel piste is new so I don't know about that.


Little Martin wrote:
I skied the eclipse piste last week, there’s a few spaces you could stand and watch, the biggest area is likely to be the bouc blanc restaurant area and above which is near the top. Then I would imagine the green a bit lower down.

It depends how much extra netting gets put up and what gets closed


I've skied both. On the courchevel race course, you could watch pisteside from the Bouc Blanc (red) or Lanches (now marked on the slop as a black, but a red on the map) pistes which run in parallel to L'eclipse towards the upper third, and Plan Fontaine (green) toward the middle. I assume and hope they would not let spectators (or other obstructions/netting) take over the whole of either adjacent piste, the latter especially as it is the piste my wife needs for the home run--Floyères, lovely as it is, is beyond her comfort zone late in the day when it inevitably ices over. On the other hand, they're only using L'eclipse on one day whilst we're there, so I may send her and the other ladies to the spa if they don't want to watch the race (although the lads probably will).
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@skimastaaah,
You should have gone to Tignes - no change in the prices.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
We're in La Tania w/c 13th March. Didn't realise the WC was there that week.... so I'll be able to update once back.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Kenzie wrote:
@skimastaaah,
You should have gone to Tignes - no change in the prices.


rolling eyes
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