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Best ski area option

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Aside from Chamonix where would be the best French resort to book in mid March next year in the hope of joining an off piste group course? A lot of the operators will only take a booking based on a minimum number of clients understandably. I don’t want to book somewhere to find out there is nothing off piste possible for the time I’m there.
Coming from Australia so can’t practically do last minute given long haul flights.
I’ve missed the Off Piste Bash.
Thanks in advance.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@sbooker, Val d'Isere? Or somewhere a bit more niche like Ste Foy which, despite being a quite small place, has good off-piste, as well as easy access to big domains like Vd'I/Tignes and Les Arcs.
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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?
Yeah. I thought Val and Tignes were likely areas to have something happening.
I’m intrigued about St Foy but would have thought it less likely to find an off piste group there. I can’t see me paying for 5 days of guiding by myself.
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@sbooker, assuming you’re coming in to Geneva, Val is the obvious - there are a few guiding companies - or Verbier?
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@sbooker, I did an off-piste course in Ste Foy with Mountain Tracks. Husky Dave whom you may have met on the EoSB, was my instructor.
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
@sbooker,
Have you tried https://www.snoworks.co.uk/ski-course-dates/ ?
Only thing I would say about Val D'Isere Tignes is that it is very popular and in my experience although the terrain is good fresh snow does not last long compared with other places even within the Tarentaise.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@sbooker, just book a course upfront with a provider that will likely be running multiple groups at the same time.

e.g. Snoworks in Tignes or La Plagne
https://www.snoworks.co.uk/ski-course-dates/?search_date_range__start=01-03-2025&search_date_range__end=31-03-2025&courses%5B%5D=19205&courses%5B%5D=13808&courses%5B%5D=13807&levels%5B%5D=level_five&levels%5B%5D=level_six

Some of these courses are full day and some half day. You can see that there are two Backcountry courses listed in Tignes for 17/3/25 - that probably means two different ability levels. The chances of there not being enough takers to run the course in March in a place like Tignes are slim to none I'd say; Snoworks have been around for at least 25 years with a lot of repeat clientele. If you have any questions, just call them.
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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!
@sbooker, if you have a decent level, La Grave with Skiers lodge or Snow Legend, would be my pick. Incredible place to ski in decent conditions and they will
Take you to Serre Chevalier or Milky Way if conditions necessitate

If you want the focus to be on instruction rather than guiding the Warren Smith courses in Verbier are very popular.
https://www.warrensmith-skiacademy.com/courses/


Last edited by After all it is free Go on u know u want to! on Mon 3-06-24 10:31; edited 1 time in total
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Try Alpine Experience in Vaal d'Isere alpineexperience.com/en/blog-val-d-isere-off-piste-daily-news/
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
@Hurtle, I’ll try them. Thanks
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
@T Bar, Snoworks is my preference as I was with them in April just gone and I had a fantastic time. The reason for my question is they only have ‘back country’ courses for my date range - La Plagne and Tignes. I assumed that course would be above my pay grade but they just emailed me to say I’d be fine. Yippee.
Now the question - La Plagne or Tignes?
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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.
@Je suis un Skieur, thanks. I just saw your post after my previous reply.
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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
@BobinCH, I’m no world beater and I’ll have my wife with me. She’s essentially a piste skier and will do an on piste course in the mornings. We’ll want to ski together some afternoons so I don’t think La Grave would work.
Verbier sounds great but somehow she has become a Francophile. She does weekly French lessons here at home so she’ll want to ply her trade while on holiday.


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 Mon 3-06-24 11:08; edited 1 time in total
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@sbooker, La Plagne I'd say, vastly underrated off piste area.....
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@DCG, thanks for the tip.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@sbooker,
Quote:

She does weekly French lessons hear at home so she’ll want to ply her trade while on holiday.

In fairness, Verbier is French-speaking. That said, you'll hear more English spoken there than any other language, including French!
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Hurtle, thanks for quoting my spelling mistake. Very Happy
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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?
@kitenski, I’ve been to Les Arc so have crossed the valley a couple of times but La Plagne is pretty new to me.
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@sbooker, although Tignes is the "safe" option for off-piste availability, I'd be tempted to go to La Plagne. Better piste skiing for your wife and because La Plagne attracts far less hard-core skiers, the off-piste has a reputation for lasting much longer before getting tracked out. Added to which you've got both proper high altitude backcountry type stuff off the top of the glacier as well as a lot of tree skiing in the lower areas.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
sbooker wrote:
@Hurtle, thanks for quoting my spelling mistake. Very Happy
Sorry. I didn't even notice it!
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
My own experience of the off piste is that La Plagne is less skied than Tignes and is the one I'd go for . Superb terrain and also a fair bit of tree level skiing if the snow down low is good.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@Je suis un Skieur, I’m thinking we may just give La Plagne a go.
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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!
UCPA has decent off-piste courses. They organise them in different ski resorts, so you can take a look at their offer and pick one that suits you best. The only "problem" is that they open bookings in September so you can't plan this much in advance.
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
UCPA would be great if I was travelling alone but my wife will be with me. She might not be keen on dorm style accommodation.
And I’m just over the 50 year age limit.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
You can get a private room though facilities are still shared. I guess that is a dealbreaker. I’m not sure they are checking the age.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
@sbooker, Snowworks are doing off piste in Tignes in March which would give your wife the option of piste skiing https://www.snoworks.co.uk/ski-courses/off-piste-performance-ski-course/
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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.
@radar, the off piste is early March (still school holidays) and 31st of March which is a bit late for me. I think I’ll do the ‘backcountry’ course in Tignes. It’s full day which isn’t ideal but I’ll peel off early afternoon a few days so I can ski with my wife.
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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
Alpine Experience in Val d'Isere do long mornings guiding roughly 8am meet through to 2pm. Depends on dates and conditions

Google "Wayne's blog Val" to get an idea.

They will skin if the conditions are tough and not much snow around but generally it is lift served off piste.

Very, very experienced and all English speaking.

You can pick and choose your days or book a full week.

That said, Val/Tignes like St Anton & Chamonix have huge ski bum populations so the off piste gets skied out faster than other places. Although the altitude gives great snow usually.

I've been more adventurous in the last 10 years and tried lots of smaller places. Up Guides do Val Cenis (other side of of mountains from 3V round to Le Fornet (Val).

You stay in a village in the the valley and they take you to wherever the snow is good each day.

Les Arcs / La Plagne also fab for high and reliable off piste with fewer saisonnaires to ski it out. North Face of Bellacote is a joy to ski if conditions are good (and safe).

There is also another company I have heard of but not skied with before that might suit you. Best Snow In The Alps. You meet at Geneva airport and they will drive you anywhere in the Alps where the snow is good. It might mean that you're driving for a few hours on the first day but that's no worse than a transfer. They monitor the snow conditions across the whole Alpine area and you pay for their experience getting you to the fresh powder.

Finally some of the best of Peace I've ever skied is in the 3 Valleys area and particularly in late April when the snow can be magnificent but with almost nobody there. I will definitely be going on the end of season Bash.

Best of luck next season.

I'm already getting excited.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@rickboden, thanks. Great info.

I’m now also considering Snoworks backcountry out of Meribel starting March 31st. Any comments on that? Not too late for Meribel given its relatively low altitude?
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@sbooker,
Quote:

Not too late for Meribel given its relatively low altitude?

I don't think so, it's a big domain, with possibilities to go higher if necessary. But I'm not an off-piste expert (though I've skied Lac de Lou from VT later than that, people usually do that on the EoSB).
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Not too late at all imo. The 3v is usually open for at least 3 weeks after that and VT through to the end of April.
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