10 Inspiring Women in Winter Sports

In celebration of International Women’s Day this week, we researched some awesome female icons in the world of Winter Sports. These incredible women, dating back to the 1800’s, set the standards in all female mountain sports, ranging from; Mountain Climbing, Figure Skating, Alpine Ski Racing, Back Country Skiing and Freestyle.

In honour of International Women’s Day, here are 10 inspirational role models, giving Girl Power with an Alpine touch.

1. Marie Paradis and Henriette d’Angeville

Image from: wikipedia
Image from: wikipedia
Image from: wikipedia
Image from: wikipedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marie Paradis was the first female to climb the famous Mont Blanc in 1808, during this time Chamonix was still under the reign of the Kingdom of Sardinia. This history changing female, succeeded the climb alongside mountain guide Jacques Balmat. The quirky fact in this story was the fashion… Marie Paradis did the whole thing in a dress! Thirty years later, Henriette d’Angeville was the second woman in history to climb Mont Blanc in 1883.

2. Sonja Henie

Image from: en.wikipedia.org -Sonja_Henie_1936
Image from: en.wikipedia.org -Sonja_Henie_1936

In 1924, the Winter Olympics was launched, women were only allowed to compete in one category – Figure Skating. At the young age of just 11 years old, Sonja Henie of Norway, competed alongside 13 other female competitors. In the 1928 Winter Olympics, Sonja went on to win Gold and in total won 3 Gold Medals over her Olympic career. There was controversy at the time around the length of her skirt, shorter than other competitors due to her age and size it was frowned upon. However, it is believed that a shorter skirt allowed her to incorporate more movement into her routine, such as spins and jumps. As a result, this iconic moment took Figure Skating to a new level with new attire!

3. Christl Cranz

Image from: europeana.eu
Image from: europeana.eu Christl Cranz

In 1936, the Winter Olympics was transformed with a new sport for females to take part in… Alpine Skiing: Alpine Combined (Slalom and Giant Slalom).
Christl Cranz of Germany was the first female to win a Gold Medal. This was the year for female competitors with over 500 women taking part. Christl Cranz then went on to win 13 World Championship titles.

4. Marielle Goitschel


This French female was originally born in Sainte-Maxine, however, moved to Val d’isere at a young age. The Goitschel family are well known for their talents in Alpine Ski racing, making it no surprise that Marielle became the second woman after Christl Cranz to win 11 World Championship medals in Alpine Ski Racing. To this day the Goitschel family are still based in the French Alps and have ski shops named after them in the resort of Val Thorens.

5. Janica Kostelic

Born in Croatia, Janica came from humble beginnings, during her European tour funding for accommodation was not available, so she and her family slept in a tent or their car during her competitions. Janica’s determination and drive to succeed landed her 4 Olympic Gold Medals. She is the only woman to have ever won 3 Gold Medals in one Winter Olympics (2002).

6. Julia Mancuso

World renowned American ski racer Julia Mancuso is a woman who never gives up, she is said to be one of the best female Alpine Ski Racers in the world. After 7 World Cup wins in Alpine Ski Racing, standing tall on the podium in 5 World Championships, winning 3 Olympic medals including GOLD in Giant Slalom in 2006, this lady knows how to win a ski race or two. Despite a hectic ski schedule she still finds time to enjoy surfing and paddling in Hawaii and is an ambassador for the High Fives Foundation supporting injured athletes.

7. Kelly Clark

This snowboarding role model has achieved the top of her game in Freestyle Snowboarding specialising in Half Pipe. She has had over 70 career wins – more than any Man or Woman. She is a 4 time Olympian and 3 time Medallist, wining Gold in the 2002 Winter Olympics Half Pipe. Kelly now focuses on her foundation, set up in 2010, her company motto is “Success starts with an opportunity to follow your dreams” and she is enabling young aspiring snowboarders to do just that.

8. Linsey Vonn

Possibly one of the most famous Female Alpine Skiers of this era, Lindsey Vonn is always making headlines. Vonn has just been granted the title of “most successful women’s skier of all time” by the Olympic organisation, after beating the World Record for 63 FIS World Cup victories which hasn’t been achieved since 1970’s by Austria’s Annemarie Moser-Pröll’s. Olympic Gold Medallist, and one of only 2 females to win the overall World Cup Championships, there really isn’t much this lady won’t do to succeed. She was awarded “Sports Woman of the year” at the Laureus World Sports Awards 2010 and despite her fair share of struggles due to injury has maintained her competitive drive and inspiring women.

9. Sarah Burke

This Canadian champion put Women’s Freestyle Skiing on the map. She campaigned for Freestyle Skiing to be in the 2014 Winter Olympics and succeeded in her cause. Four time Winter X Games Gold Medallist and World Championship skier in Half Pipe, Sarah Burke inspired thousands of women of all ages to follow their passion. Tragically Sarah Burke died during training in 2012. This devastating loss hit the Freestyle community hard, however, her legacy lives on inspiring females to take Freestyle skiing to another level. Lyndsey Dyer a creative film maker and famous Back Country skier dedicated her all female “Pretty Faces” ski film to Sarah Burke, this is a must see film for anyone who loves mountains, skiing and Girl Power.

10. Kelly Sildaru

The most recent female on our radar, Kelly Sildaru is a 14 year old Freestyle skier from Estonia.  Competing in Slopestyle, Sildaru is the youngest female to win a Gold medal in the 2017 Aspen Winter X Games. If that wasn’t enough she then continued being the first female to win 2 prizes at the X Games landing a Silver medal in Big Air. This talented teenager is one to watch for future Winter Olympics.

These inspiring women have excelled in the sport they love, and have motivated us to go out and challenge ourselves on the piste. This week we are very proud to announce that out of the 11 Alpine Action female staff that participated in the “Sheride Sessions, Slope Style competition” in Meribel’s Elements Park, 8 won prizes! Congratulations ladies representing International Women’s Day and Alpine Action. 


Guide: Spring Skiing in Meribel

Why is Spring Skiing in Meribel so great!

Sunshine, smiley faces, parties, funny goggle marks and more snow than you might expect. Just a few of the things we love about Spring skiing in the Three Valleys.

In fact, Méribel in the spring comes with more than just a few perks.

In this blog we’re taking a closer look at the pros of a late season session on the slopes that’ll have you searching for all the Spring Ski deals and stocking up on the Factor 50 before you can say ‘have I got any annual leave left?’

Spring skiing is all about Location, Location, Location

Méribel’s enviable position, at the centre of the largest lift-linked ski area in the world with over 600km of marked pistes and 200 ski lifts serving a 110 square mile area, is a great base for exploring the tail-end of a season. Méribel, like La Tania, is of course well connected via lft and piste to the third valley of Val Thorens.

With 99% of its ski area above 2000m, it’s Europe’s highest major resort and one of its most snowsure from the start of the season right through to May. It even comes with a snow guarantee…

The Snow…there’s more than you might expect.

With a winter’s worth of snow as a base, accumulations on Méribel’s upper slopes can regularly reach depths of 2 meters by March and April. We took a look at the spring snowfall records for the last five years and found that an average of almost 50cm fell during the last six weeks of the season, easily matching the snowfall recorded in December in those same seasons.

With the warmer temperatures and stronger sunshine though, snow quality can be more unpredictable, but fear not! Spring skiing just calls for a little pre-planning. We recommend taking to South facing runs such as Jerusalem in the morning and switching to the North facing ones, such as the Cote Brune, in the afternoons.

The Pace of Life

Skiing on a bluebird day in the spring takes on a quality different to that of the winter. It becomes less about the standard adrenaline-fuelled stuff and more about an awe-filled exploration of the mountains.

The longer, warmer days mean that you can take the time to ‘smell the flowers’ as it were. There’s a sense of new growth, a natural unfurling of the summer to come which brings with it the inevitable buzz and potential of a seasonal shift. And this is what those mountain-top bar terraces were made for…

A World Away from the Piste

If you do get the odd day where conditions are less than perfect, it’s handy to know that there are some great alternatives to the slopes.

There are some really good non-ski activities that include paragliding, Ice skating, water parks and Ice Karting on offer in Meribel and The Three Valleys. And oh, did we mention the lovely, sunshine-filled Apres?

There are a lot of parties

There’s always something going on in the Three Valleys but it’s March and April that see the focus lie heavily on parties, charity music events and top notch festivals. Firm favourites such as March’s Ronnie Loves Music Festival and the legendary Three Valleys Charity day in April are just two great examples that complement a whole host of closing parties and the inevitable ‘drink the bar dry’ nights that see the season drawn to a very merry close.

Spring time skiing in Meribel and the Three Valleys is basically about excitable early mornings on the slopes and leisurely lines back towards an especially awesome apres scene that starts in the afternoon and continues late, late into the night.

Time to tot up that unused leave and take a look at our latest offers to join us here this Spring…


Our Guide to Keeping Warm on the Slopes

Find out how to stay warm on the slopes this season

We have over 25 years of experience providing catered chalet holidays and whilst we obviously share the poet Edith Sitwell’s love for a cosy home, an open fire, quality time with friends and family and fantastic food, we differ slightly in her assertion that it’s the only place we want to be.

Winter is, naturally, our favourite season. We start counting down the days from spring! Then after a long wait, it snows and it is finally time to get outside and play! There’s stunning scenery to be explored and fluffy powder crying out to be skied!

“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.” Edith Sitwell 

But all this fun comes at a cold price and if, like us, you want to squeeze out every last second on the slopes during your ski holiday, staying as warm and dry as possible is paramount. Nobody wants to cut their day on the hill short because of the cold.

With this in mind we’ve put together some handy tips to help you stay warm and comfortable on the slopes the whole day long.

Courchevel Jan 2019

Food is Fuel

Start the day right with a good breakfast. However keen you are to get going, you need to put some fuel in the tank first! And eating makes you warmer!

Essentially, you are adding energy which serves to warm up the body. And the bonus is that you don’t have to worry about storing that energy as fat, as you’re sure to burn it all off in the day on the slopes. (Ah, the joys of a guilt-free full English or continental breakfast feast!)

Breakfast might be the most important meal of the day, but with all that shredding planned, you’re going to need to keep refuelling.

Pack some snacks, (granola or cereal bars are our go-to), and then make the most of a reinvigorating lunch at one of the great mountain restaurants.

Go for something nice and warm but avoid an afternoon energy-slump by skipping anything too rich or particularly carb heavy (we know you won’t), save that for dinner at the chalet!

Layer Up

Verb: To dress in multiple layers before heading out. Done to protect oneself from cold elements or just to look mad fresh. (UrbanDictionary.com)

We’re talking here about urbandictionary.com’s first definition here, but hey, if you want to look ‘mad fresh’ in the process who are we to judge. We’ve seen all sorts of trends come and go!

Seriously though, layers help trap small pockets of air and multiple layers are always better that one chunky ski jacket. Start with a Merino wool thermal layer which, unlike cotton, will still trap air even if it gets wet, then add a down filled mid-layer and a waterproof shell jacket.

Make sure you do up your jacket’s powder skirt and tuck in all those layers carefully, to avoid the dreaded shovel-full of snow up your back when you fall over (hey, it happens to the best of us).

Extremities in Extreme Cold

Cold head, hands and feet are the skier or snowboarder’s nemesis and sometimes, however good the conditions are, can be cause-enough to abandon slope. Combat really cold hands with a combination of mittens along with a silk glove liner and consider using a pair of hand warmers. They’re small, inexpensive and easily inserted into ski gloves and even boots.

Ski socks have come along way from the extra-thick chunky variety that ultimately restricts your circulation and it really pays to invest in some good quality thinner pairs. When it comes to feet, think merino wool again. With its excellent wicking properties, it will help your feet to keep dry and regulate body temperature. And of course, if you have them, make use of your chalet’s boot-warmers! It’s so important to start your day with dry-as-a-bone kit. If you don’t you’ll find it impossible to get warm.

Let’s face it: there are always going to be people that look great in any hat they put on their head and those that, well, just aren’t. But whichever group you fall into, some form of headwear is imperative on the mountain.

There are traditional wooly hats, helmets, snoods, buffs and balaclavas to choose from and the most important thing is that they help you conserve body heat and protect those ears from the wind chill. You can also try neck gaiters to keep out the drafts and snow.

Take A Break

If you’re out on the slopes and you can feel the cold creeping in uncomfortably so, despite good eating and good dressing, we highly recommend taking a break for a hot choc or a  vin chaud. Or maybe just take yourself off to the new Legends Chairlift that runs from the Chaudanne area up to the top of the Elements Park. It has covered and heated seats!

Meribel – Jan 2019

 


Six Non-Ski Activities to Try in the Three Valleys for 2019

The top 6 non-ski activities in the Three Valleys

If you live and breathe skiing, and with the largest linked ski area in the world on your Méribel or La Tania chalet doorstep, you could be excused for thinking that you have everything you need right there.

But despite the 600+ km of marked pistes and the fact that the Three Valleys is one of the most snow-sure resorts in Europe, there will inevitably be times when you (or someone you’re holidaying with, at least) will fancy a change from skiing or snowboarding.

As well as ice-skating, bowling, paragliding, tobogganing, mountain biking, massage and relaxation spaces, retail therapy and plenty of apres-ski venues to keep you busy, there are all sorts of slightly more alternative activities to try in the Three Valleys.

 

 

With that in mind we’ve picked six of the best non-ski activities in the Three Valleys, guaranteed to keep dedicated skiers and non-skiers alike happy all holiday.

 

If you need any further information about some of the options listed below you can always give our UK office a call on 01273 466535 to see if we can advise…

Ice Driving and Ice Karting

This could just be the ultimate ‘rush’. Visit the highest ice-racing track in Europe at Val Thorens and, under the guidance of professionals, experience the thrill of driving on ice! There’s also an ice kart track which is perfect for the kids and the opportunity to try a ‘buggy’, essentially a quad bike on ice which seats two people.

 

Dog Sledding

There are different options here, from a high octane, adrenaline fueled exploration of the forests with ups, downs and branch-du

 

cking galore, to a rather more sedate, level trip around a lake. If the actual activity of Husky sledding is a step too far, there are also opportunities to simply meet and pet the dogs. Call Karine on +33 (0)6 75 41 74 94

JOH_5522

 

Snow Shoeing

This is a great activity for everyone, young and old. As the saying goes; If you can walk, you can snowshoe! It is a brilliant way of getting an alternative, more tranquil view of the resort and exploring more remote and unspoilt scenery.

There are open tours, or you can book a guide for a bespoke expedition for 1-6 people.

Ski-joering

Ok, so this admittedly does have an element of skiing involved, but only minimal ski competence is necessary. This mix of skiing and equestrianism dates back hundreds of years and, in the Three Valleys, is practiced in a tranquil setting away from the hustle and bustle of the pistes. The horse wears a harness with a flap for the skier to hold and then the skier is pulled along by the strength of the horse along specially adapted paths.

to Boo call +33 4 57 37 17 21

Igloo Building!

Every Wednesday evening throughout the season at the Méribel Prosneige Ski School, kids can get together for some guided mountain exploration and the chance to learn how to build an actual igloo! It’s also a chance for parents to have a moment to themselves…

Tel: 04 79 00 3646

Water Park Fun in the Mountains?

Yes, it really is possible. Aquamotion Courchevel offers everything from a well equipped spa to a surfable wave as well as water flumes and slides and an indoor climbing wall. Located at the crossroads between Courchevel Village and Courchevel Moriond, access to Aquamotion is on foot or by free shuttle. With an on-site restaurant, it’s a great choice for a full day’s activities away from the slopes. Tel: +33 (0)9 71 007 300


If you are looking for a place to stay when you’re visiting the 3 Valleys – Take a look at our Catered Ski Chalets in Meribel and La Tania.


Three Valleys Piste Guide

A guide to some of the best pistes in the Three Valleys – Run Recommendations

Three Valleys Piste Guide

There are 321 pistes in the 3 Valleys, so choosing which runs to do can be a bit of a headache without a guide.

To help we have compiled a quick guide of pistes that have been recommended and are well worth trying out next time you are skiing in Meribel, Val Thorens or Courchevel.

All these runs have been recommended by regular skiers to the area and tested by us.

Guide to Blue Pistes in The Three Valleys

Loze

Three Valleys Piste Guide

The Loze runs from the top of the chairlift of the same name. The lift starts and the run ends in the Altiport area of Meribel and starts where La Tania and Meribel meet.

The piste zigzags it way down the mountain and after several hairpins, you will find yourself in the trees before an exhilarating flatline to the bottom of the lift.

Keep your eyes peeled on the run for dragons, hammocks and activities. It definitely ranks among the more challenging blue runs in the area.

Folyeres

Three Valleys Piste Guide

You maybe forgiven for giving this run a miss. On paper, it looks like an essential run to use if you are staying in La Tania and need to get back to your accommodation.

However, we would say that this a must to do run as it is so much fun. It is a fast run through the trees ending in the middle of La Tania. It is also a great run if it is a whiteout.

If your there at the right time grab some lunch and catch some rays outside the Ski Lodge.

You should also double this up by skiing down the equally fun and often untouched Lanches red run that feeds into the top of the Folyeres

Gelinotte & Choucas

Three Valleys Piste Guide

The Gelinotte is wide and underused run that starts midway up the side of the Valley at the top of the Roc de Fer chair and comes directly back into the Chaudanne area of Meribel.

A great run for beginners who aren’t looking to stray too far from the centre of town. The downside to this piste is that the chair that serves the run is pretty slow, however, you do get a great view of the Stade de Slalom.

You can extend the run by catching a second lift, (Olympic) to the top of the mountain and enjoying the Choucas piste directly to the top of the Gelinotte.

Jerusalem

Three Valleys Piste Guide

This legendary run has recently been reclassified as a blue run but it is still truly epic. It runs from the top of the Meribel/Saint-Martin link down into Saint-Martin-de-Belleville.

From the long wide corners to the fast straight sections and the incredibly fun rollers that appear throughout, this is one of the best runs in the area.

No trip to the area is complete without a hoon down this run.

Creux

Three Valleys Piste Guide

This is on many people’s list of top runs in the 3 Valleys and for a very good reason. It is a thoroughly enjoyable run.

The start is quite challenging for a blue run and it is often quite crowded but there is plenty of space and it is easy to pick your line.

As you get towards the bottom of the first section the crowds seem to disappear and you can start to pick up more speed as you go under the Creux Noir char down into the valley that divides the Courchevel ski areas up.

There is a fun compression before you pass the Chanrossa lift station and once you have passed that you can put in big carving turns all the way down the Aguille du Fruit chair.


To listen to a podcast that features all this runs click on the box below or follow the link to iTunes.

Listen on iTunes


Guide to Red Pistes in The Three Valleys

Combe Saulire

Three Valleys Piste Guide

This runs down the face of the Saulire mountain underneath the Courchevel gondola and it is an incredible run. It is one of the fastest and widest runs in the 3 Valleys.

Due to its location, it is heavily used, especially in the afternoon as it is the easiest way back to Courchevel. For that reason, we recommend putting it at the beginning of your ski day while it is still groomed.

As you speed down this run take some time to enjoy the magnificent couloirs to your left and the stunning view of the valley and Mt Blanc in the distance.

Mont Vallon

If you’re staying in Meribel you must head up Mt Vallon. Firstly the vistas of the Vanoise National Park are incredible.

But primarily the runs down, Combe du Vallon and Campagnol are fun and challenging. Due to the location, they also make you feel like your actually skiing down a mountain.

Guide to Black Pistes in The Three Valleys

Muir

A secret little black run that glides past the Courchevel Altiport down into the Valley.

We like this run as very few people use it and there are some interesting features as you drop down past the tree line.

It is a challenge, but isn’t too long and makes a great place for skiers who are looking to build up their confidence on a black run that is not very busy.

M

This is a monster of a black run and runs from the top of the Vizelle bubble to the bottom. There are multiple routes to take down but try and stick to M.

The run is fairly steep all the way down and will work you hard, especially if it hasn’t been maintained regularly.

The challenge is rewarded by a big wide exit at the base of the run right by the cable car so you are ready to do it again.

Rocher Grises

Rocher Grises

To get to this black run you take the Creux Noir chair. At the top there are some stunning views and a choice of runs down, the red called Creux Noir will take you down to Meribel or you can take the Rocher Grises that splits into a red and black.

If you like MPV size moguls then this is the run for you. If you are an intermediate you will look down and feel overwhelmed, a little scared and ultimately pretty pleased with yourself.

Advanced skiers will relish the challenge that this steep run offers. Due to the location of the run, the snow is generally in good condition which allows you to really dig your edges in when needed.

It is worth mentioning that this is one of the areas guaranteed powder areas… which means that it is left ungroomed after fresh snow.

Jockeys

Another piste that is dismissed as a just a home run. Jockeys starts at the top of the Foret chair and winds its way back down to the station of Le Praz, home to the Olympic ski jump.

The run is left ungroomed after a snowfall and maintained for the rest of the time. During periods of low snowfall, the run can be a bit icey.

However, when the run is in top condition it is fast and a lot of fun.


If you want a base to explore the Three Valleys and these recommended runs our catered chalets in Meribel and La Tania are located perfectly.


What’s On in Méribel for 2018/2019

Our guide to what’s across the 3 Valleys in 2018/2019.

We’ve already put together a rundown of what’s new in Méribel for 2018/19 and with the season fast approaching, anticipation and general excitement is now reaching its annual fever pitch!

The Three Valleys is more than just the largest linked ski area in the world and as always, there are lots of events taking place throughout the season that you won’t want to miss if you can help it.  

We’ve put together a few dates for your diary for the 2018 / 2019 season in Méribel and The Three Valleys.

whats on meribel

Ski Area opening day. Snow cover permitting, the Three Valleys ski area is scheduled to open from 8th December, so expect a huge buzz with lots of smiling faces and eager lift-goers jostling for space on the newly opened slopes.

The Audi FIS Ski World Cup takes place over in Courchevel over a full weekend, 21st-22nd December. Many champions take part, all keen to become the next Mikaela Shiffrin (USA), who won last year’s competition ahead of Tessa Worley (France) and Manuela Moelgg (Italy).

Also in December, catch the inaugural, Meribel stage of the Ladies Night Tour. An International women’s Alpine tour, the dual slalom event takes place at night which really ups the atmospheric stakes and is the best place to catch up with the female French skiers at the top of their game.

See in 2019 in style with the New Year celebrations, Meribel style. Expect fireworks and champagne corks and some great parties at a whole host of clubs and bars such as the Folie Douce, The Rond Point, O’Sullivans and Jacks. Be sure to check their websites beforehand as some bars and clubs are ticketed on NYE.

NYE Meribel

In January, catch The French Slopestyle Cup, held in the DC Area 43 Terrain Park. See top athletes performing simply extraordinary jumps and tricks in this spectacular competition, guaranteed ‘ohs’ and ‘ahs’ as standard.

Kicking off on the 14th and then throughout February and March, join upwards of 8,000 spectators to witness some of the most amazing firework displays you’re ever likely to see, at the International Fireworks Festival in Courchevel.

March is all about Music and sees the return of The Ronnie Loves Music Festival. Back for its seventh consecutive year, the week-long family friendly festival features top name events and a Big Air contest, all in one of the Alps’ top Apres Ski venues.

It’s also the month of Méribel’s Piste Bash Festival, featuring skiing, live music, DJs and comedy in the heart of the Three Valleys.

As April arrives and we start to think about the season’s end, there’s still time for the Three Valleys Enduro event which sees teams of pros, amateurs and families compete in some great challenges and events such as the Giant Slalom and Skicross.

Also in April is the Annual Three Valleys Charity Day, held in Meribel Village. The event is a firm favourite and has been running for more than 15 years now. The lineup this year includes hip-hop DJ Jaguar and perennial partiers, the Dub Pistols.


Unless you’re lucky enough to be spending the whole season in Méribel, chances are you’ll only be able to catch one or two of the events we’ve highlighted here. Handily, we’ve also got a Meribel Bucket List guide, which is all perfectly doable, even if you have just the one week in Meribel and The Three Valleys.

 


Ultimate ski photos – Pics to make your friends jealous

The best photos to take on your ski holiday

Photos aren’t for keeping in a drawer or on your google drive they are for sharing on Instagram and Facebook, often with the sole intention of making your friends envious of your holiday.

Here is our tick list of photos you have to take when you are in the mountains.

The Selfie

What self-respecting person wouldn’t post a holiday selfie. The most popular pic to take on a ski holiday is the lift selfie. Preferably with all your mates in it.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Yeah it’s another chairlift selfie #gopro #3vallées

A post shared by Dan Boer (@danboer1) on


The Luxury Item

Skiing is all about luxury and spoiling yourself. From champaign lunches to a nighttime soak in the chalet hot tub, it is your duty to document them all and share your experience with your friends.

The view from the hot tub – Chalet Serpolet, Meribel

The Cheese

No mountain holiday would be compleat with the overindulgence of cheese and this comes in many forms.  There is the fondue night, the tartiflette on the mountain, the after-dinner cheese board and not forgetting the stunning displays and tasters on offer at the local market.

Top Tip: Fondue tastes better than it looks especially when it a low-resolution camera in a  low light restaurant after a few wines! 

The Mountain View

On a clear day, it is the summits are where the Alps is at its most spectacular. With views across to other mountains, sweeping valley vistas and endless horizons. Not to mention the untouched snow full of untapped potential.

Top Tip: Never used the panorama setting on your phone? This is the moment.

 

The Action Shot 

Possibly the hardest one to get done. Let’s be honest very few of us are amazing skiers and even few of us have a camera crew follwing us about taking 1000’s of pictures allowing us to pick the best one.

So get your mate to have a go at getting a good shot of you. You will get better results if the photos are being taken closer to the ground.

And if you get a good one it will be your profile picture for many years to come.

 

The Apres Ski One

This is the one even your non-ski pals will find envious. It can be hard to get right as many apres venues can be a bit dingy. But choose one like the Folie Douce in Meribel and you’re going to get a winning photo every time.


Find out more about great holidays to Meribel. 


Why the 3 Valleys lift pass is good value for money

Why the 3 Valleys lift pass is good value for money.

Next winter the 3 Valleys lift pass will cost €306 for an adult for 6 days and is outstanding value for money. There are are a reported 4.5 million skiers that visit The 3 Valleys each year giving the area plenty of funds to reinvest.

The constant investment ensures it remains great value for money and the best place to ski in the world.Find our how The 3 Valleys spend their money and give skiers the best possible experience.

FreeCurrencyRates.com

The 3 Valleys Ski Area

why the 3 valleys lift pass is good value for money

For your money you get 600km of piste to play on and to put that into perspective all of the ski areas in Canada could fit into the 3 Valleys. If you then break that down into Euros per kilometre you get 2.1 km for every Euro you spend on your lift pass. The next best value for money resort is neighbouring La Plagne where you get just 1.5 km per euro.

Despite the vast area, 85% of runs are above the magic 1800m with the highest peak of  3230m in Val Thorens. This impressive altitude guarantees snow and there is an average base of 80cm and annual snowfall of 155cm. All these stats are the reason that the 3 Valleys features in all snow-sure ski area lists.

Snow Making in the Three Valleys

why the 3 valleys lift pass is good value for money.

Being British we know the weather can be unpredictable and maybe this has rubbed off on our colleagues in charge of The 3 Valleys ski area and help them come to the decision to invest heavily in snowmaking. There are currently 2200 snow cannons that can make 5,280,000 cubic meters of snow per day across the area.

The cannons are located on a third of all the runs and there is a fleet of 70 piste bashers to attend to the snow. The resorts source water from a nearby dam for the snowmaking and the water bill is estimated to be around a €1m per valley.

Snow Parks in the Three Valleys

why the 3 valleys lift pass is good value for money.As the sport has changed and the attention is not all on Alpine skiers more people become interested in freestyle. The 3 Valleys has continued to keep up and has some of the best snow parks in Europe that have recently attracted the likes of James “Woodsy” Woods to play.

In Méribel, there is the DC Area park that features big kickers, a half pipe and is flanked by a boarder cross course. You can also find the slightly tamer Moon park in the same valley. Courchevel has a family park that is suitable for all and has an air bag to help you improve your tricks.

Val Thorens has invested in an expert and beginner slopestyle park that is popular with local riders and there is also FIS standard ski cross course.  And finally, there is the BK Park in Les Menuires full of rail and bumps for all abilities.

Three Valleys staff

why the 3 valleys lift pass is good value for money.

For many business one of the biggest outgoings is the wage bill and the 3 Valleys is no different.  The area employs 1200 people just to operate the lifts on top of this there are security staff, pisteurs, resort staff, bus drivers and maintenance teams. If they were on minimum wages the monthly bill just for lifties would be €1,740,000.

How much does The Three Valleys Invest

why the 3 valleys lift pass is good value for money.

We often speak to the management directly responsible for the infrastructure and they always talk in big numbers and they know that it is the continual reinvestment and development that keeps people coming back year after year.

Before last season started at least €50m was spent on improvements and new infrastructure. This included 3 new chairs in Val Thorens, a new chair and multiple piste improvements in Courchevel & Méribel, across the board snowpark improvements, indoor picnic areas, family entertainment, night skiing, wifi and selfie machines.

The Three Valleys is environmentally friendly

why the 3 valleys lift pass is good value for money.There is also investment in what you can’t see such as drainage, waste and reducing environmental impact. The resorts of The 3 Valleys come in the top 20 of environmentally friendly ski resorts in Europe and that is down to its investment in renewable energy to power the lifts.

All the resorts are committed to minimising the traffic and reliance of cars in resort which is combated by providing free bus services at an estimated cost of €5m per season.

What else can you get for the money

why the 3 valleys lift pass is good value for money.

For €306 euros you can get a weeks lift pass and go skiing in The 3 Valleys or you could get…

1 day at Alton Towers for a family of 4 plus £50 spending money.

9 hours indoor skiing.

8 hours Wakeboarding.

68 bottle of alcohol free red wine.

685 All Butter Croissants from Lidl

So there you have it The 3 Valleys lift pass is great value unless you like croissants more.

 

Oh and one last thing..

 

Is it cheaper to do 6 half day passes?

why the 3 valleys lift pass is good value for money.We get asked if there is a cheaper way to buy a 3 valleys lift passes, such as 6 half day passes. If you were to buy 6 half day passes you would, in fact, spend €42 more. A day pass can be bought for €62 and would get you 4.5 ski days for the same cost as a 6 day.


If you want more information an skiing in the 3 Valleys or want to find out about our catered ski chalets then please give us a call on 01273 466 535 or check out our website alpineaction.co.uk.


What’s on at this years London Ski show 2018

Find out what is on at this year’s Ski Show 2018

The London Ski Show has been going for 45 years. The last few have seen some massive changes as it moved to a Battersea Park and is now called the Ski and Snowboard Festival.

There is more than before to see and do and the outside space that hosts the big kicker (Mount Battersea) and aprés stage is the best part of the whole show.

Below is our guide to what to see and what is new…

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The Facts

Dates: Thursday 25th October to Sunday 28th October (times vary)
Location: Battersea Evolution in Battersea Park
Price: Early Bird – £15 Full £25 Concessions £10 – Children £8 – Under 11’s Free
Website: skiandsnowboard.co.uk

 

What’s on at the Ski Show

Skiing and Snowboarding

There is more skiing and snowboarding to watch than ever before which is good as that is what the show is all about.

Mount Battersea is back with its pro riders hitting a real snow kicker pulling off some massive tricks. Expect to see some of our Olympic stars like Murray Buchan taking part in the pro rider demo alongside some emerging talent as well as Q & A’s with the stars of Team GB.

The Ski Club of Great Britain will be making the most of the real snow at the foot of Mount Battersea by offering avalanche training sessions before the big air starts.

If you fancy a bit of skiing yourself then there will be an artificial rolling ski slope for you to develop your skills on. Numbers are limited for this but you can book your place online prior to the event.
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Kids & Family

As the show is held during half term this year the organisers are making sure there is a tonne of things for kids to get involved in which will mean that you can spend a whole day there.

During the day there is entertainment in The Lodge area with children’s entertainers Tootles & Nibs that includes winter sports-themed games and activities, winter selfie station, arts & crafts and face painting.

There is also ice skating and rock climbing also available as part of the ticket price.

 

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Entertainment

Husky sledging is a new activity at this year’s festival for you to try, details are slim but we guess it will be a sleigh on wheels being towed by the dog around the site.

The show is also introducing a vintage Ferris wheel to the fun. From the top, you will get great views of the park and the Thames.

And the Apres is being ramped up with a headline set from Sunset Sons on Saturday night.

Exhibitors

The truth is that the show wouldn’t exist without the “trade show” element and for many people the chance to shop for all things ski related in one place is the reason they attend.

As well as that you can expect the usual mix of small and large tour operators, retailers such as Ellis Brigham and Finches Emporium, gap year opportunities like our friends Basecamp ski instructor courses, representatives from ski areas like the Three Valleys,

Naturally, there will be oodles of clothing and equipment for sale as well as the obligatory novelty helmet stand.

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Food

Since moving from Earls Court the food on offer is mountains better than in previous years with some of the street food being surprisingly tasty and at quite reasonable prices. It could be your first chance of the winter to get some tartiflette.

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Free Stuff

Don’t miss out on all the free stuff. Get it right and you could restock your stationery cupboard, bag some new sunglasses & get enough sweets to cover the trick or treaters over Halloween.
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new in meribel 2018/19

What’s new in Meribel this winter 2018/19

Find out what is new in Meribel

There are some exciting changes and including 2 chairlifts and a handful of runs all new in Meribel.

In a video released by Meribel Alpina, the company responsible for the lift system and pistes,  details of some of the changes for this winter has been revealed.

Legends: New Chairlift

There will be a new faster 6 man detachable chairlift replacing the Plan de l’Homme and the Roc de Fer lifts called Legends. It will run from the Chaudanne area up to the top of the Elements park.

The new lift can move 3600 people an hour. It is 1650m long, carries skiers up to 2017m above sea level over 580 vertical meters. More importantly, the seats are heated and covered!

You will still be able to access the Olympic and Cherferie chair easily so access to Saint-Martin-de-Belleville will not be affected.

Cherferie: Chair Lift relocation

As previously mentioned this lift is easy to access from the Legends chair and is a great link if you want to drop down into Saint-Martin-de-Belleville. And up until now has been a drag lift that many people choose to avoid.

The lift stations won’t move but the route and the method will. When the resort opens in December there will be a brand new that will take just 4 minutes.

Mont Vallon Refurb

There will be a more comfortable journey up to Meribel’s highest peak this winter. The cars are part of the refurb and will have better seating for the long journey up.

new in meribel 2018/19

New Runs in Meribel

Along with the changes to the lift system on the western slopes above Meribel, there are new additions to the piste map.  The connections between the new lifts are improved along with the creation of two new red runs.

There is a new red piste called the Gypaete flanking the existing Choucas blue run that followed the original route of the Cherferie lift.

Close by and located just under the Olympic Express chair is the new red run called Daguet. This piste will start midway down the black Face run, cut under the chairlift and merge into the meeting point of the Gelinotte and Raffort runs that link Meribel Centre and Les Allues respectively.


If you are planning a Meribel trip this winter take a look at our catered chalets that are located throughout the resort with great access to the slopes.

 

 


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