Meribel – A History in Numbers

The History of Meribel in Numbers

We are pretty proud that Alpine Action is celebrating its 25th winter but it isn’t all about us Meribel is 80 this season! And Meribel has a lot of History.

In 1938 the first lift opened along with the first accommodation, Chalet Doran the following year and all this was the start of what would become the Three Valleys.

Peter Lindsay a British Colonel and the passionate skier is credited in realising the potential of the Allues valley and the development of Meribel.

Meribel in Numbers

31 Number of seats on the sledge that was the resorts original ski lift. It was named the Red Dragon.

1950 The year that the Saulire was opened as a link to Courchevel

30 the angle all roofs must be on buildings in the resort.

40,000 – Number of guest per week during the winter season

40 – Percentage of skiers that are British

1:52.55 Winning time at the 1992 Winter Olympics Women’s downhill set by Kerrin Lee-Gartner
for Canada held in Meribel.

57 Number of Chalets and hotels in Meribel in 1954

36,00 Current number of beds in resort

1:29.87 Winning time at the 2015 FIS Women’s downhill set by Lindsay Vonn held in Meribel.

4 Number of lifts in in 1955

30 The number it took to install a the first chairlift

15 Meribel is comprised of a cluster of villages along the Valley

25 Is the number of years Alpine Action has been operating in Meribel

Come and join us for a ski holiday in one of the best and oldest ski resorts in France. Check out all our catered ski chalets in Meribel. 



The 3 Valleys continues to just keep on giving this season, along with an incredible amount of snowfall, we also have an action packed schedule to keep families entertained during the February Half Term Holidays.

The best thing about holidaying in Meribel and La Tania during February half term is how good the lift systems are. Shorter queues and less delays resulting in longer time out playing on the slopes.

Alpine Action are a family run company, we understand that family ski holidays are some of the most special times you can spend together. Simply bonding over a sport you are passionate about, outdoors in the fresh mountain air, spectacular views and beautiful surrounds.

This week we have a lot of youngsters out on their first Family skiing holiday, below is a little information for parents thinking about taking their children skiing for the first time.

Where to ski with your family

There are 4 fantastic places to take your children both in Meribel and La Tania,  if they are beginner skiers. The first is Meribel Mottaret, this area of the Meribel Valley had a makeover last season and has a new learner area designed with children in mind.

There are 2 free magic carpets to get you started, the first a very gentle area behind the Plattieres lift station, this is great for getting the feel of skiing and being out of the way of speedy more advanced skiers and boarders. There is also a longer, slightly steeper piste next to the Combes chair lift, this allows progression once the beginner starts to make a little progress later in the day.

Next Step, once you have mastered the magic carpets you can take your first chair lift up “Combes” this will take you to another learner area with tunnels, obstacles to practise turning and give you more of a sensation of being “on the mountain”.

Second there is Meribel Altiport, take the Altiport C bus up or use a ski pass and take the Rhodos bubble from La Chaudanne.  Beautiful scenery, surrounded by trees and if you are lucky wildlife.

There is an Inuit village at the top of the Free Altiport drag lift that enables you to have some rest and play time when the children tire. There is also some husky dogs for children to pet and play with.


Good to know for parents: There are toilets located, inside the tourism office at the bottom of the magic carpet in Meribel Mottaret and at the bottom of the Altiport drag lift. There are also multiple cafes and restaurants surrounding these areas for much needed breaks.

La Tania, has a free drag/button lift called Trokia, this is great for your first day skiing as a family with littles ones. It is a gentle slope out of the way of speedy skiers and has a few cafe/rest stop options at the bottom including a small children’s outdoor playground.

Finally we have the Courchevel Verdons and Jardin Alpin areas. These are great beginner green runs with bubble lifts going over the top and nice long, wide, cruising pistes for children to progress and take their time. Sandwiched in between is the Courchevel Family Park, which even has an airbag and inflatable donuts with a slide.

Weather & Snow Forecast

The weather Gods just keep on giving! This weekend, we have seen more snowfall kindly topping up the pistes just in time for the start of February half term holidays. Today we are forecast for sunshine all day with clouds re-forming late in the afternoon and light snow showers.

On Wednesday, we are predicted light snow showers in the morning, followed by sunshine in the afternoon and similar conditions into the end of the week. With a maximum of 11cm falling over the week in total. Wind chill is brrrrrr… freezing with lows of -18 on Tuesday and Wednesday. Sunrise is from around 07:30am each morning and sun set around 18:00pm.

The Meribel Valley currently has a reading of 105cm of snow at resort level (1450m) and 288cm at Altitude (2700m).
The Courchevel Valley currently has a reading of 195cm at resort level (1800m) and 288cm at Altitude (2700m)

Avalanche risk is 2 out of 5

What’s on this week in Meribel

Market Day: Meribel Centre
Ladies Night From 9 am to 8 pm Stade de Corbey – Méribel Centre
Bowling: Soirée Fluo from 5 pm to 8 pm
Téléfondue: at 7.30 pm Plateau de la Chaudanne, eat fondu in the Saulire Express lift at night. 79 €, book your own cabin for 2 or for your family/friends (maximum 4 places) call +33 (0)6 61 65 90 92.
Hockey Demonstration Match: Méribel vs Courchevel, at 8.30 pm, at the Olympic centre, Adult: 5 € Child: 3 €. Free entry for children
♫Live Music♫
Jack’s Bar: 17.00, DAISY B
Le Pub: 22.00, WINGMEN
Evolution: 22.00, HOBO CHIC
O’Sullivans: 00.30, BRING YOUR SISTERS
La Taverne: 22.00 BEN VICKERS

Valentine’s Day on slopes: 10am – 4pm, a day dedicated to love on the slopes. Animations, gifts and other delicacies for lovers. Rendez-vous at the Chaudanne snowfront, the Inuit village or Elements Park.
Come to pet the Huskies: 1.30pm – 4pm Piste des Inuits.
Torchlight descent for children: meet at Le Rone Point, Meribel, at 6 pm.
La Follie Douce in association with Craemex Lip Balm: Seasonaire Day, from 9 am to 5 pm.
♫Live Music♫
Jack’s Bar: 18.00, DAKINI
Rond Point: 17.00, BUBBLE & CRISP

Eagles show: 10am – 4pm, front de Neige de l’Altiport, 10 am: Beginning of the raptor show 11 am: downhill skiing with eagles 11.30 am: eagle show 15 pm: downhill skiing with eagles 3.30 pm: eagle show Acess by foot and ski. Free of charge.
Himalaya By Night: 17:30-19:30, Meribel Mottaret, Night Sledging.
Ice rink: Olympic Games Evening, from 8pm – 10pm, ice bowling, sledging, hockey, skeleton, snowshoeing…Many goodies to be won! 10 € pp
♫Live Music♫
Jack’s Bar: 17.00, PADDY JAMES
Le Pub: 23.00, GARETH & WESTY
O’Sullivans: 00.00, SEEKID AND FRIENDS

Market Day: Meribel Centre
Come to pet the Huskies: from 1.30pm – 4pm, Piste des Inuits
♫Live Music♫
Jack’s Bar: 17.00, JAY TAMKIN

What’s on this week in La Tania

Courchevel NIGHT SLEDGING: 17:15, Free age: from 5 years old, after the slopes close, sledge down the hill!
♫Live Music♫
Pub Le Ski Lodge: 17:00, Apres Ski
La Taiga: 10.00pm, Pop-rock band. Courchevel

SLEDGE RACE: Free 17:30
♫Live Music♫
Pub Le Ski Lodge: 17:00, Apres Ski

♫Live Music♫
Pub Le Ski Lodge: 22:00, Open Mic Night

Last Minute Availability

With snow this good we are fully booked for the next few weeks, but check out our availability for the end of March and April on our webiste: Alpine Action Offers


Snow report and piste guide for the 3 Valleys

Bonjour a tous! Reporting to you live from Meribel and La Tania, the Alpine Action Resort Team are back with your  Weekly Snow Report and Events in the heart of the 3 Valleys. The snow Gods have answered our prayers and this Winter 2017/18 has seen more snowfall in the past month and a half than it did the whole of last Season! Approximately 3 meters of snow has fallen, leaving us with a solid 2 meter base and regular dustings on top. This week we are forecast for another 30cm of fresh snow.

The 3 Valleys mountain teams have been working extremely hard to ensure our pistes are safe and secured so we can have all the fun playing in the POWDER. The mountain has become a playground for all, with Liberty Free Ride areas being secured for the skiing adventurer wanting a bit of Alpine Action, by trying out some off piste terrain in a secured area. Main pistes have been groomed to perfection – this weekly our absolute favourite run is the NEW Jeruselum piste dropping from Meribel into Saint Martin.


Winding and rolling all the way from the top of Saint Martin Express 2, to the centre of Saint Martin village, this run is an absolute dream and accessible for intermediate – advanced skiers – it is certainly the best run we have skied this season!

If you fancy trying out some off piste terrain in a secured location our Liberty Ride area (highlighted in yellow on your 3 Valleys piste map) of the week is… Tetras.

Tetras: Located in Courchevel 1650, this run used to be a groomed piste but is now home to an ungroomed monitored Free Ride area. Shooting down under the Chapelets lift in Courchevel 1650 this run has a mixed terrain with side hits, moguls, untouched powder and short but steep descents.

Weather forecast

This week we have already seen heavy snowfall since Saturday with approximately 15cm falling until this evening. Tomorrow (Tuesday) the clouds will clear and sunshine is forecast for the next 2 days. On Thursday evening the clouds will re-form and a further 27cm of snow is forecast to fall over night and into Friday. Next week we are currently forecast for sunshine all week!

The Meribel Valley currently has a reading of 125cm of snow at resort level (1450m) and 330m at Altitude (2700m).

The Courchevel Valley currently has a reading of 207cm at resort level (1800m) and 290cm at Altitude (2700m)

Avalanche risk is 5 out of 5 – do not go off piste


What’s on this week in Meribel


Oxegene Ski School: 13:30-16:00, try out their beginner Magic Carpet with free instruction next to the Rhodos Restaurant.
♫Live Music♫
Evolution: 22.00, THE MARDY JOHNNY DEPPS

Market Day: Meribel Centre
Mountain Safety Training: 17:00-19:00 Parc Olympique 20euros pp kit provided.
♫Live Music♫
Jack’s Bar: 17.00, DAISY B
Le Pub: 23.00, BUBBLE & CRISP
Evolution: 22.00, HOBO CHIC
O’Sullivans: 00.30, BRING YOUR SISTERS
The Den 22.00 BEN VICKERS


Hockey Demo Match: 20:30, Meribel vs La Rosiere, 5e for Adults 3e for Children.
♫Live Music♫
Jack’s Bar: 18.00, WINGMEN
Rond Point: 17.00, BUBBLE & CRISP
Le Pub: 23.00, MONSTABALL

Himalaya By Night: 17:30-19:30, Meribel Mottaret, Night Sledging.
♫Live Music♫
Jack’s Bar: 17.00, HOBO CHIC
Le Pub: 23.00, GARETH & WESTY
La Taverne: 22.00, BUBBLE & CRISP
O’Sullivans: 00.00, A SKILLZ

Market Day: Meribel Centre
♫Live Music♫
Jack’s Bar: 17.00, JAY TAMKIN
La Taverne: 22.00, HOBO CHIC

What’s on this week in La Tania

♫Live Music♫
APRÈS Ski Concert: 16:00, Free entry, just pay for drinks.
Le Chrome Bar: 16:00, Hook playing music.
Pub Le Ski Lodge: 17:00, Apres Ski
Pub Le Ski Lodge: 22:00, pop-rock band playing.

TIRE À L’ÉRABLE MAPLE TAFFY: free event 16:30, Come and enjoy the traditional maple syrup lollipops. Music and a hot beverage.
CINEMA EVENING: 20:30, 15 € Cinema evening with access to the Aquawellness area. Aquamotion Courchevel – Courchevel Village +33 (0) 971 00 73 00 I
♫Live Music♫
Ski Lodge: APRÈS ski and 22:00 concert from musicians Conso.
La Taiga: 17:00, Freddy Fingers Piano Show.

Courchevel NIGHT SLEDGING: 17:15, Free age: from 5 years old, after the slopes close, sledge down the hill!
♫Live Music♫
Pub Le Ski Lodge: 17:00, Apres Ski
La Taiga: 10.00pm, Pop-rock band. Courchevel

♫Live Music♫
Pub Le Ski Lodge: 17:00, Apres Ski

Aquawellness night: 20:30,to booking: Aquamotion – Courchevel Village +33 (0) 971 00 73 00 I
♫Live Music♫
Pub Le Ski Lodge: 22:00, Open Mic Night

Last Minute Availability

We still have limited spaces in our Chalets across Meribel and La Tania. If you are looking for a fabulous Chalet Holiday in the heart of the 3 Valleys, don’t hesitate to check out our last-minute deals on the Alpine Action website! Next week we have just 4 beds, 2 in Chalet Serpolet in Meribel Centre and 2 in Chalet Attila in La Tania.

So much snow in 2018 – 3 Valleys Snow Report

A great start to 2018 – 3 Valleys Snow Report

Meribel 2018

2018 has started with over 130cm of snow falling from the sky adding to the epic December snowfall of 2017 to leave depths of up to 280cm across the 3 Valleys. This quantity of snow means that we have some of the best conditions on and off the piste in recent years.

Slope report

When there is a huge amount of snow there will always be a risk and the avalanche warning levels remain high. However, the piste security has been working overtime and all the runs are now open and all the high-risk faces have been blasted.

With all this snow you would expect people to be flocking to Meribel and the 3 Valleys to ski the amazing conditions but you would be wrong. While we are 99% full, some guests have been commenting on how quiet the slopes feel? So not only are the conditions incredible the queues are short and the runs clear.

How can it be this empty? #Lovemeribel

A post shared by Alpine Action 🎿🏂🚠 (@alpineactionski) on

The runs down to the lower resorts such as La Tania and Le Praz are in great shape and much better than usual which means they can be enjoyed and not just treated as commuter piste!

There is some easy safe off-piste or “Sidecountry” to tackle within the resort’s boundaries but if you are planning on making the most of the deep stuff we advise you hire a guide and pack all the essential kit!

13 Jan only £399pp – Three people – Gatwick  Flights – Meribel Morel – Triple room

Snow Forecast

Meribel 2018

The joy of this season so far has been the bursts of snow that are followed by clear skies that reveal the pristine snow-covered landscape that excites you and hurries you out of bed for a day of non-stop skiing.

This excitement doesn’t look like it will be stopping soon. The people who predict the weather are saying that we can expect at least another meter to fall at the end of next week over a few days.

Up until Tuesday the 16th  we can expect sunny skies to help us make the most of the current conditions.

Come and join us and play in the snow – Check out all our January offers. 

The best December snow in a decade – 3 Valleys snow report

December has delivered the snow!

Over the last few years, December has been a bit of a dud month in terms of snow. Not that matters too much in the 3 Valleys as it has one of the biggest snowmaking networks in the world, 2383 snow cannons across 50% of the slopes.


How Much Snow Has Fallen in December?

The 2017/18 winter has started with a bang. 170 cm of snow has fallen in December and when you add Novembers snowfall of 48cm you get the same amount of snow that fell during each of the last two winter seasons. That much snow has set this winter up to be one of the best in the last 10 years.

Some resorts are claiming that it is the best December in the last decade and for many it is. Here in Meribel, the record goes to the winter of 2012/13 when there was a massive 267cm of snow in December alone and 700cm during the entire season. 2017/18 has quite a long way to go to beat that record.

2018 has started with storms and snow. No sooner had the bells welcomed in the New Year it started to snow. As of the 3rd of January, the snowfall for the year was already at 30cm and on the 3rd day of the month a massive storm bringing high winds and more snow closed most of the lifts and runs in the area.

January Snow Forecast

The forecast suggests that the snowfall won’t be letting up anytime soon. The 14-day prediction is that there should be another 100cm before the middle of January. There are also plenty of sunny days in the snow report to give us ample opportunities to enjoy the amazing conditions.

Where to Ski

The slopes across the 3 Valleys should be in great shape for weeks to come. Some of the more exposed slopes may initially have a thinner base after the storm where the wind blows away the looser snow but expect this to remedied by the resorts piste grooming team.

A post shared by @ramerc on

While the snow passes and the visibility is poor head to the lower altitude tree areas in La Tania, Le Praz and the Altiport area in Meribel. Once the snow slows there will be a lot of work for the mountain security team to do which may restrict access to the steep higher slopes. But don’t worry about that go and play on the slopes of Courchevel – Moriond 1650 and the runs into Saint Martin de Belleville.

Once the whole area is open and the snow has settled down head up high and enjoy the runs of Mont Vallon or one of our favourites after a fresh dump is to head to the Col de Chanrossa where there is some great off-piste to play with.

If you want to join us we have some great last minute deals from £499pp to Meribel and La Tania this January.

December snow Meribel

Three Valleys Preseason Snow Report

Our preseason snow report.

You have probably heard about all the snow this season but if you haven’t here is everything you need to know about the conditions in the Three Valleys.

Since the colder months arrived the Three Valleys has officially received around 135cm of snow and there is more to come over the next few week.


Opening dates and prices

Val Thorens opened for the season on the 25th of November and due to the conditions, Courchevel opened up for a day of free skiing on Wednesday the 22nd of November.

The season truly gets underway on the 9th of December when Meribel and Courchevel start the lifts up and all the links open. La Tania opens a week later on the 16th of December in time for a white Christmas.

Lift Pass Prices 

3 Valleys lift pass prices

How good is good

Currently, the base level at altitude is between 80 and 100 cm which is the average for a whole season. Ski runs back into Meribel have a respectable 30cm coverage.

We have said the snowfall has been impressive this season but how impressive is it? The first snow fell on the 30th of October, since then we have received 7 more significant snow days, with the best being 40cm on the 20th of November.

Last winter 80cm of snow fell in November but crucially the temperatures were unusually high causing the snow to melt at lower altitudes which made the beginning of the season feel a bit like spring. This year the temperatures have remained low and have stayed in the minus figure since the first snow fell.

The amount of snow that has fallen places it in the top 3 best starts to a winter season since 2006, only being beaten by 2008 and 2012, but this could change over the weekend.

Chalet Rosalie – Meribel Village £649pp
Chalet Alysson – Meribel Center £699pp
Chalet Virage – Meribel Center £759pp
Chalet Attila – La Lania £699pp

Snow Forecast

Looking ahead there is another 50cm of snow predicted to fall before the lifts open on Saturday and the snow won’t be stopping for most of the week with a total of 176cm set to fall on the higher slopes by Friday the 15th. The snow may continue into Christmas week as there is another half a meter appearing on the longterm forecast.

Snow Photos and Videos 

Some snow on the balcony of Chalet Virage

Snowy trees.

Perfectly groomed in Val Thorens

Meribel sent Jeremy Prevost up to test the slopes!

If you are thinking this might be a great winter to enjoy Christmas in the Alps then give us a call tel: +44(0) 1273 466 535 .

How to help your body recover from skiing or snowboarding

Our guide to how you can help your body recover from a day skiing or snowboarding : Get the most out of your ski trip.

Do you plan to get ski fit for your next trip only to put it off and then suddenly you’re on a plane and you haven’t done any relevant exercises? Skiing and Snowboarding works parts of your body that you don’t use in everyday life. If you aren’t “ski body” ready there are going to be parts of you that will ache after a day on the slopes. There are things that you can do during the evening in your chalet to make you feel ready for the next day on the slopes.

Meribel ski lift


Stretching is one of the best ways to help your body recover after skiing, it will help you to avoid sore muscles the next day. Stretching after a day of riding helps muscles return to their original position by removing the tension. During your post ski stretching the circulation of blood will return to your muscles allowing them to recover and repair. Make sure that you focus on stretching your leg muscles, glutes and lower back.

Here is a handy warm down guide from ski expert Warren Smith.

Warm up

Warming your muscles up a few hours after exercises can really help ease the pain and get your body back to it’s full potential. In many ski chalets you will find a hot tub or a sauna. Don’t mistake these for novelties that add a level of sophistication to your holiday, these are important bits of kit that can help your post ski recovery. Warming your body in a hot tub or sauna increases blood flow and allows more oxygen get to your muscles. Experts advise that you wait for several hours before hopping into a sauna or a hot tub after skiing or snowboarding and to make sure that you are thoroughly hydrated. Many sports therapists also suggest that you should wait until your a few days into your trip before indulging your muscles as the heat can also inflame your muscles and slow down the recovery.

… & in the morning

If you are an early riser or you don’t rush out onto the slopes you may want to use the time to warm up in the hot tub, sauna or shower. Warm muscles are less likely to be damaged during exercises.





A great way to make sure you are ready for the next day on the slopes is to get a sports massage that works on the soft tissues around the most worked parts of your body. A massage after skiing should focus on your lower back and knee area. Having your body looked after like this will aid your relaxation and increase your recovery.

Ice Bath

Out of all the techniques this is probably the best at ensuring your muscles recover overnight. The chances that your chalet will have enough ice on hand to do this is unlikely but don’t worry. All you need is a bath at normal cold tap temperature, between 8°C and 10°C. The cold temperature will slow the inflammation and help get the recovery process working faster. You should go for two session of five minutes with a warm up in between. If there is a fresh dump of snow you could always jump in that.

Stay hydrated

All the above will be a waste of time if you don’t hydrate effectively at the end of the day. We all know that at altitude you lose water from your body faster than at sea level. If you are then taking part in a strenuous activity such as skiing or snowboarding you will become dehydrated even quicker. You body needs liquid to help with repairing muscles as well as to extract the nutrients from your food during the digestion process. Taking a drink directly after skiing will also lower your heart rate faster and ensure that you don’t spend the evening feeling fatigued. Please note that chalet wine is not an acceptable way to hydrate yourself!

Receive all our latest ski deals by signing up to our newsletter

5 excuses to go skiing this Christmas

Do you always find an excuse to not ski at Christmas?

You have probably thought about going skiing at Christmas every year but something has put you off and you have always found an excuse. We have spent many Christmases in the 3 Valleys and we can confirm it is the most wonderful time of the year. You also get an extra thrill when you suddenly realise that it’s Christmas Day and you are on the slopes and having great time.

Whatever your reason for not going in the past here are a few excuses you can use this year.

P1020560 (1024x576) (2)

#1 You just love skiing

Maybe not an excuse and more just a fact but if you love skiing then what could be a better present to you and your family that the gift of a ski trip. It also means that you get to try out that new pair of skis that you will have been bought for Christmas.


#2 Christmas is on offer

A week skiing during Christmas has never been so reasonably priced with all tour operators offering big savings, making the cost similar to off peak weeks. Our prices are starting at £599 pp for the festive week and there are savings of up to £350 pp on our best properties. So if you have always put off a Christmas ski trip due to price now is your chance.

#3 White Christmas

Every single year Bing Crosby sings “I’m dreaming of a white Christmas”. He is right to do so. If you look at the facts you notice that the UK hasn’t had widespread snow on the ground during Christmas since 2010 and before that it was 2004. So to combat this you could head to the 3 Valleys where they pretty much can guarantee you a White Christmas.

#4 Be looked after

The demands of Christmas day for those hosting can be huge, will Aunt Janet get too drunk, will the turkey be cooked in time, have you peeled enough potatoes? Why not avoid this and go on a catered ski chalet holiday and let them look after you? All you will need to do is go skiing and relax… unless you bring Aunt Janet with you.

La Tania 2005 - chalet dame Blanche

#5 One for the humbugs

Spending Christmas in a skiing is a great compromise as in a way it always feels a bit like Christmas in a ski resort. But at the same time it doesn’t as everything is open and everyone is either working or skiing or both. This makes it a perfect place to spend Christmas for families of mixed festive spirit.

2013-11-11 14.48.32


Three Valleys Snow Round-Up – November

Huge early season snowfall in the Three Valleys

At the beginning of November, the ground was looking a bit brown with small patches of snow from previous snow flurries and snow cannons. Now the whole ski area is cover in the glorious white stuff! Here is a look at all the photos and videos from the last few days.

Meribel valley on the 1st of November before the snow.

Latest webcam round up

Val Thorens capture the first few flakes of snow on the 5th.

Check out all our latest offers
16th Dec from £599 pp inc FTA
Save £340pp on Christmas Ski Holidays
Up to £800 off New Year Ski Trips

Snow settles on the town

Loads of snow outside Jacks Bar

A post shared by Jacks Bar (@jacksbarmeribel) on

Courchevel shows off the town all covered in snow.

The snow gets all the way down to La Tania

No lifts, no problem.

Courchevel sends the photographer out for a walk when the sun comes out

A 4×4 Fiat Panda gets out in the Meribel snow

Testing out my new ride #4×4 #4x4panda #fiatpanda #meribel #snow

A post shared by DJ KAYA Mixcloud DJ_KAYA (@roblangley01) on

Val Thorens sends out the piste bashers!

To book a ski or snowboard holiday to Meribel or La Tania give us a call or take a look at our catered chalets in the 3 Valleys.


Guide – off-piste in Meribel

Run report – off-piste in Meribel

off piste meribel One of the best parts of my job is being able to share my own knowledge of the ski resort, passing on tips and suggestions of which pistes to try, where to find the best conditions and how to get the most out of a week skiing in the three valleys.

As befits the largest ski area in the world, there are hundreds of kilometres of pistes to enjoy for skiers and boarders of every level. However, for experienced skiers, there is a world of fun to be had beyond the marked and bashed runs.

Before saying any more, we need to be totally clear that skiing off-piste can be extremely dangerous. It should only be considered by experienced and confident skiers. As minimum safety precautions you should always look to go in small groups – 3 or 4 is ideal – and never alone. Be aware of the published avalanche risk, but be aware that snow conditions can change rapidly. An hour in the sun can turn safe routes into an unacceptable risk in less than an hour.

Before setting off, you should ensure your insurance covers you for going off-piste and carry and know how to use the relevant safety equipment of a transceiver, shovel and probe. We would strongly recommend engaging an instructor or a guide, and it is always worth checking with the pisteurs for their views on where is safe to go. Always remember that skiing off-piste poses a risk not just to yourself, but also to those who on the mountain around you, such as other skiers on the same slopes, or the secouristes who would conduct a rescue operation if anything went wrong. If you are at all unsure, you should not go.

With the proper precautions however, off- piste skiing can be one of the great highlights of a skiing holiday in the Alps, so where are some of the best routes in Meribel?

My advice would be to head to the Vallon and Cote Brune sectors. On the Vallon gondola you will most likely see plenty of tracks underneath the lift, which can be accessed from the corner at the top of the Combe de Vallon piste. While this is one of the more recognised and accessible off-piste routes, beware of partially covered rocks.

WP_20140326_018For those looking to go further into the backcountry, head through the gap in the rock on your left as you come out of the Vallon bubble. There is another reasonably established route straight down hereto the side of the piste, but if you keep left, a small 10 minute walk and a short traverse lead you out to some powder field coming down from the ridge. Check with the pisteurs before attempting this route as the snowpack can be unstable above you, but in the right conditions the fluffy powder, comfortable gradient and spectacular views can make this route a showstopping highlight.

A final route to try is accessed from the top of the Becca lift. In the snowbank opposite the lift you will most likely see tracks leading diagonally up to the ridge line. The top offers a spectacular view both down to Les Menuires one way and across to the Mont Vallon summit the other. Be careful of the entry point here. Traverse across the slope to the centre of the chute to avoid the treacherous rocky drops immediately below where the track up reaches the ridgeline.

The descent down from here looks clear enough but boarders in particular will want to avoid keeping too far left as they will risk being caught out by a flat section right at the bottom before regaining the piste. Equally however, head too far right and you risk being blocked by another few rocky drops, or finding yourself underneath a particularly steep section of the slope where the risk of avalanche is higher. Keep to a conservative line though and you should have a fabulous descent, with the added bonus of being able to admire your track as you head back up the Cote Brune lift.

To book a holiday to Meribel or La Tania call us on 01273 466 535 or go take a look at our chalets.

Meribel & La Tania Holidays

Find out more about our holidays to Méribel or La Tania.

Contact Us

If you would like to chat about holidays to Méribel or La Tania please get in touch via one of the methods on our contact page.

Our Favorite Topics


To sign up for our newletter please enter your email address below: