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Anyone up for Chamonix UCPA 27th March?? - Buddies wanted!

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi there. I'm a 31 year old female looking for some extra buddies to ski with next month.

Have already booked to go to Chamonix, staying at the UCPA there (a non profit organisation in France). It's skiing/boarding on a budget. You stay in dorms, but the location of the place is very central, and the place is clean, social and kid free! You get your bed, 3 meals a day (buffet style), equipment hire, lift pass and ski lessons (for all levels) for about £520. You would need to book your transport there seperately.

I went last month there on my own and had a great time. Going back on March 27th with a girl i met there last month. However would be great to have some more folks there too, as good to have a group together.

I'm a pretty social laid back type, and also love having a couple of drinks in the evening and a giggle! If any of you are interested, let me know!

Rachel
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Will probably be in the Argentiere UCPA again a couple of weeks later than you, 10th April. Hope you enjoy Cham, what course are you doing?
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Not sure yet. Will be taking ski lessons, so either in the 'improvers' or 'mastery' class, depending on how much I remember from last month! Have fun in Argentiere!!
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Hi Rachel,

Sounds good to me, I have a couple of weeks off work end of March/early April time, and would really like to get away sking.

How do you travel, are the transfers easy?

I'm 24, not a brilliant skier but have had 3 holidays and keen to get some more practice. My mates can't get away this year, didn't fancy going on my own but I would definitely be up for getting a group together.

Would be great if you had some more info, thanks.

Nicci
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
I'll be in Cham at that time and am happy to meet up for a ski and a drink during the week sometime
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Out of interest, do UCPA do lessons in English speaking groups or is it always bilingual/multilingual groups?
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
slikedges, it depends on size of centre and how many people are out there. The UCPA seems to attract a load of Swedes for some reason, all of whom speak perfect English but little French, and I found the balance of language was about 50/50. Our guide on the freeride tended to speak in English as the French/Belgians in our group all spoke it pretty well too.
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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!
Hi Nicci. The UK partner for UCPA is Action Outdoors. If you google it, it'll come up with the website which has got all the information on it.

Getting there - Flights are best to Geneva. The transfer takes about 90mins, and cost 25 euros each way. If you google 'chamonix transfer', it'll come up with all the options. There's alpybus or the chamexpress. Personally, I'm going by bus as unfortunately the flights are more expensive what with it being easter week. Only problem with that is you have to sleep on the coach, going on the friday evening. That's cost me £130 which does take you directly to Chamonix. You can book that through Action Outdoors.

I've also written on another forum and have had a few people interested in booking for the week, so looks like they'll be a good group going! = Let me know what you decide to do Happy

Slikedges - Would agree with Sideshow Bob about the language. Does seem to be a mix of languages.

Touchquru - Would be good to meet for a drink! Take it you're not doing it the UCPA way?
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Thanks both, and does anyone know if they do weekends or only full weeks?
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There's 5 of us arriving on 1st April for 5 nights
Only cost us £90 return to Geneva from LHR

We're in the Chamonix Sud area, always up for a beer or two

Very Happy
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Slikedges - Think mainly they just do a full week. However pretty sure they also do some part weeks also - saw one advertised on the Action Outdoors website for end of April from the wed/thu to the sun. Best to give them a ring at AO and they'll be able to tell you all.

Jason - Well done on the price of flight. The cheapest i could find was £200! That's on the sat's though. Think it's cheaper mid week. Always up for a beer! The Chamber Neuf is always a good place 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.
Hi Rachel/Nicci

Im thinking about going away at the end of March but would have to go alone as none of my friends are able to go or have already been.

Ive never been away on my own before so the thought is a bit daunting Puzzled

Im 30 so about the same age but would be doing Snowboarding. I would have lessons but would be great to have some buddies to share with and some English speaking friends as I dont speak hardly any French!

How would you be getting there? Any info would be great.

Alison
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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
Hi Rachel/Alison

Thanks for the info, that sounds great but the only problem i've got is travel. The flight prices aren't cheap, if I lived nearer the south would go by coach but train fares to London are a bit pricey. Will let you know if I find a cheap travel deal.

Nicci
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Rachel, thanks, sorry for thread hijack Little Angel
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Hi Alison,

Come along!! It always is a bit daunting going away on your own. I felt exactly the same when I went away last month on my own. The good thing about going with other solo skiers is that everyone is in the same boat and looking to meet other folks. As I've said myself and a friend are already booked for that week, so they'll already be 2 people to meet!

As far as the lessons go, it would be difficult to know who else would be in your group until you get there, but like it's been said before the lessons are in English as well as French. There's a lot of Swedish folks at the UCPA who don't really speak French, so need to communicate in English. The lessons don't start til the Monday, so can all go out together on the Sun.

I'm getting there by the snowexpress. However my friend is flying to geneva. I've also posted on another skiers forum and got a bit of interest from people wanting to go for the week. Closer the date we could all swap emails and work out who's getting in and when - may be that people can share transfers - however it's easy to get a transfer on your own from geneva, and we can just meet up at the UCPA.

Sound good? Let me know what you think and if you do book.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Nicci - That's the only prob with easter weeks - the flights cost a bomb! Hope you do manage to find a cheaper option.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Going to be asking my boss on monday if I can get that week off!

This season has been wrecked by interviews for grad jobs (for September) getting in the way whenever I tried to organise anything with mates, now I have finally got one I can make it out to the Alps at last.


I'm 25, pretty good skiier with my own gear, (happy on anything pisted, not a fan of bumps and need more practice off piste.)
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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?
Fatadder - Fingers crossed you can get the week off! Ever been to Chamonix before?
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Hi all. I saw Rachel's post on Neilson's website and am seriously thinking of coming along. I have been skiing twice before but once as a kid and the last time time ages ago, so am hoping it all comes back to me! I did have a refresher course last year on my local dry slope which seemed to work okay so fingers crossed.

I'm in Norwich, so the best option for me (although not cheapest) is to fly direct from Norwich airport with flybe to Geneva and get chamexpress to resort. Would be interested in sharing transfers. Rachel and Juliette are already booked in and I'm hoping I can join them.

Cheers
Gavin
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Looking promising, though still haven't got the definite OK from the boss...
Cant decide what way will be best to get there, bus is cheap and no hassle sorting out transfers, but after every single Uni ski trip I swore I'd never take a bus to the alps again!
Only problem with flying (other than how to get from Geneva to Cham) is the rip off charge to take skis....

Never been to Chamonix before, though it is a resort that I really want to ski!
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fatadder If you fly Swiss from LHR there is no charge for skis. you can still get a return for around £200 depending on day and time
Transfers from Geneva are generally €25 each way , We're using Chamexpress but there are others for same price

I went last year with National Express, it was better than i expected but it is £150 around Easter time (if they still have spaces)
I've paid less than that this year for flights and transfers

We're just doing a long weekend 1st to 6th, so only 2 days off of work Very Happy
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Heya Gavin...good to see you on here. Hope you do book!

Fatadder - Just to let you know that when you book with UCPA, skis and boots are included, it's part of the package. You can bring your own skis but it's no cheaper if you do. Apparently they are pretty good quality, but you'd need to speak to the folks at Action Outdoors for more details. I think a lot of people end up bringing their own boots but use the centres skis. Anyhow would save some money if you end up going with a budget airline! If not the coach can't be that bad can it??...don't tell me too much, it'll give me nighmares before i 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!
Seems the flights were either a bit too costly or arriving seriously late, so looks like once again its going to be the bus trip!

Just have to go back to my boss and try and get another afternoon off now, having realised there is no chance of getting from work to London by the time the bus leaves.....
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Last edited by You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net. on Thu 15-04-10 17:33; edited 1 time in total
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Change of plan for me, looks like I'll be going to Flaine with the fiancee on the 27th. Would've gone to Cham/Argentiere but they don't have any twin/double rooms. Perhaps see some of you on the bus on the way over there!
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Adrian, if you're there at the same time as us you are welcome to come with us, all skiers though
some of our group prefer Blues, i will do all blues and Reds and one of us can ski all pistes
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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.
Hey Adrian, I'd give the guys a call at Action Outdoors about the snowboard lessons. Have noticed that things change quite a bit on the website with the dates and what lessons are available. It may well be that they do still have spaces for lessons if you enquire.
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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
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I've recently discovered, that I do have free time on above dates! Madeye-Smiley
Interesting!

Wow, so many people is coming - reeeaaally tempting!
I'm 28, intermediate skier.

Couple of questions:

-do they have secure lockers for each person to store documents/valuables/laptops?
-it starts actually 28 Mar, not 27, right?
Link: http://chamonix-uk.ucpa.com/notreoffre/offrevacances/tabid/3906/Default.aspx?Public=A

-are people there mostly friendly? (When I travel alone, I usually stay alone, but
here it looks like a camp ))) Laughing

P.S. If only I didn't buy already flight 6Apr-11Apr to Geneva and booked a hotel Puzzled
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
MASTIN - Hi there. In answer to your questions, yes there are lockers. One each in the rooms. You just need to take your own padlock. They're pretty big.

If you book directly with UCPA it starts from Sun 28th. However there is an option of adding on the Sat night, and then further option of adding on lessons. If you book with Action Outdoors they've already added the extra night, so it's for a full week from Sat-Sat (you can check in to room from 5pm, and need to check out by 2pm the following Sat).

Are the people there friendly? No they're awful..awful!!!! Nah I'm joking. It's a very friendly place. People all eat and drink together and generally have a good time! A lot of folks there are French, and as I don't speak much French was wanting to make sure i had plenty of folks to speak English with also over the week. Myself and Juliette are also very friendly..really! One other person has booked as far as I'm aware but not sure of anyone else as yet. However still 3 weeks to go (and counting), so I guess there's still plenty of time! Tempted?
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Booked Flaine for that week. While I'd have loved to have gone back to Cham/Argentiere for the freeride/couloir course I don't think the fiancee would've enjoyed the dorm rooms too much. Travelling out by coach so may see some of you on there.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi Rachel,

I just went to book up with Action-Outdoors and they are now fully booked Sad Looks like I left it too late just my luck as I was all set to go!

Thanks for letting me know about the UCPA though as hopefully I can get something arranged sooner and make sure I make it next year.

Have a great time all!

Alison x
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slikedges, they do 3-4 days also, search here: http://holidays.ucpa.com
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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?
Hi Adrian / Alison,

Have contacted Action Outdoors and they have definately sold out of the snowboarding lessons places.

However, the other two options may be to either :- 1) Ski? Stupid idea, boarders don't want to be on ski's eh? - they do still have the ski lessons though. 2) The other option would be to book without lessons, which again there is still availability, which is a cheap option (only £468, but still includes hire of stuff). If you did want lessons, you could then possibly book elsewhere for those. Other people may have some ideas about that.

The lessons are only on the mon, tue, thu and fri, so we'd all still be avilable to ski/board together on the Sun and Wed. Anyhow, just an idea!
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Oh...and of course meet up after for the apres ski!! Happy
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Rachel, I booked "Skiing with a passion" in Chamonix UCPA
from 28/03/2010 to 03/04/2010 and altered my flight.
So, we should be definitely having fun on the slopes there! Very Happy
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Aaargh! Checked last night, yep, loads of places left on the offpiste course, our website updates when places run out. Go away, book coach, transfers, flights (complicated as I need to travel onwards within France for the following week), sign up online. Three hours later, get a call. They've run out of places on the off-piste course, so have put me on the full time ski lessons instead. Evil or Very Mad I'm going to hope someone else drops out or gets kicked out and try to change course once in resort.
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Ooh err 'skiing with a passion' eh? Is that just UCPA's fancy way of saying skiing instruction?! Happy Glad you managed to change the flights..are you not arriving until the Sunday then?

Sideshow Bob - Bummer eh! Think the off piste courses are popular. Hope you manage to sneak in the back door. Will see you on the coach over there!
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After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Hi Rachel,

I did look into to seperate lessons but they were all only for 2.5 hours either the mornings/afternoons. I am a beginner/intermediate boarder and am only ok on blue runs at the mo (been a total of 2 weeks boarding) so prob wouldnt be able to come out with you guys as you sound quite a bit more experienced.

Is anyone coming that is not as advanced?

I really dont fancy learning skiing as I have just started to get the hang of the board. I dont think I could handle another week on my bum! Blush

Oh and I am definatly up for some apres ski Smile
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Last edited by You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net. on Thu 15-04-10 17:32; edited 1 time in total
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Rachel, yeah, "skiing with a passion" implies that UCPA do have passionate instructors )))
My French is limited with 2-3 common phrases, so hopefully we'll get English-speaking tutor. Laughing There were much worse fares for Saturday flights, so I'm arriving on Sunday to Geneva 10.35 then take Chamexpress transfer, should be at UCPA by 13.30
Do you know if I can go on the slopes the same day?


I've contacted UCPA, so maybe I spend another week skiing (3Apr-10Apr) in Argentiere UCPA. Apparently, they only have several snowboard courses for these dates, I'm convincing them to provide me with skies for independent skiing instead. If it won't work, I'll take 3 days (3Apr-5Apr) of skiing with them for 210EUR. We'll see, maybe I join jasongibson100 to ride blue pistes then. Madeye-Smiley


Last edited by Ski the Net with snowHeads on Fri 5-03-10 1:58; edited 1 time in total
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