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23 February site announcement: 6 new map areas:

4 new detailed Japan forecast maps Hokkaido, Northern Honshu, Central Honshu and a detailed weather map of southern Japan.

There is also a new South Korea snow forecast map as well as an overview map of all of East Asia covering South Korea, Japan and eastern China.

Fr Ski France

Welcome to the Ski France page, providing a regular round-up of the skiing conditions and current snow reports for the main ski resorts in the French Alps and the Pyrenees. Over recent years some of the most consistently good piste conditions have been reported at Tignes, Val d'Isere, Flaine, La Rosiere, La Plagne, Alpe d'Huez, Val Thorens and La Grave showing a mix of glacial resorts and those most exposed to the prevailing storm paths. However, in any given week or season the best slope conditions may be found at any of the other high French resorts or at lower elevation ski stations in poor weather.

For off-piste powder, resorts such as La Rosiere, Les Menuires, Morzine, Samoens, Les Saisies, Le Grand Bornand, Montchavin/Les Coches and Val d'Isere have proven among the most consistent either for their regular snowfalls, northerly aspect or for not getting tracked out quickly. Warm moist weather fronts drifting in from the Atlantic can produce significant snowfalls in the French Alps Chamonix, Argentiere, Flaine and Samoens have impressive records) but can also raise the freezing level so your choice of resort can be crucial if you are chasing powder. Check out the reports below for the latest news and the forecasts we provide for different elevations in the resort.

France is one of the world’s top skiing destinations. The best known of the country’s 400 or so ski areas are in the Northern and Southern Alps but there are also several dozen ski areas in the French Pyrenees and in other sectors like the Auvergne and Jura.

French ski resorts have really come in to their own in the past 40 years – later than the other three main Alpine skiing nations.

The post-war plan skiing in France was to help stop the migration of agricultural communities to the cities has been reversed by the country’s efforts to develop ski resorts. They have grown to include the world’s biggest fully lift-linked ski region (The 3 Valleys – which always had a 600km total no matter how many new runs are added); its biggest lift served vertical (at Chamonix) and indeed six of the world’s 10 biggest ski regions. Europe’s highest resort, Val Thorens, is also here.

But it’s not just size but also convenience that led many French resorts to success and ever more people to love to ski France – the original concrete resorts built in the 1960s were not always pretty but they were designed to be functional and give slopeside access to the skiing and all other facilities in a few short steps at a time when most resorts in Europe required a laborious trek to catch a ski bus and then ages on lifts getting up to the slopes.

This decision to build resorts at altitude has paid extra dividends in these years of climate change fears as, with many ski areas beginning and ending 1000 vertical metres higher than many traditional resorts, they are more likely to get natural snowfall when lower elevation resorts get rain, and for it to be cold enough to run snow making machines when lower resorts have air too warm.

Those who are not so keen on this high altitude, purpose-built ski experience however criticise the resorts as soul-less places, artificial communities (they are almost completely empty in spring and autumn) with their captive market charged high prices for a sometimes inferior service. The slopes are also criticised as bleak, being high above the treeline.

Aimed squarely at the family market, French resorts also offer the most comprehensive childcare for babies as young as a few months old at most resorts, and ski kindergarten from three, although they do make children pay for lift passes a few years younger than elsewhere in the Alps and the full adult price from early teens or younger. The family orientation also means that lively après ski is something of a rarity in France.

Although French lift passes for these big ski regions are – except when the Swiss franc is on a high – among the most expensive to ski at in Europe, the French argue that they are still the best value because your extra Euros buy access to far more kilometres of piste and the use of many more fast lifts than at smaller resorts. In any case there is usually a cheaper pass for part of the giant ski area which in any case is equal in size or larger than a ‘regular’ ski area elsewhere.

It is wrong to think however that all French resorts are purpose-built. Chamonix, Morzine, Val d'Isere, Montgenevre (Via Lattea) and many other famous resorts have long histories as mountain and ski tourism communities, some originally spa towns. Megeve was developed in the 1920s as a rival to St Moritz by Baroness Rothschild and it still retains much of the ‘old money’ and more Michelin starred chefs than any other French resort, while Courchevel has become the country’s most glitz resort where the most expensive chalet costs £200,000 a week to rent.

Summer glacier skiing has declined dramatically in France since 2000. There used to be 7 or 8 resorts offering summer skiing but now only three (Tignes, Val d'Isere and Les Deux Alpes) are open briefly in July and August and there’s no skiing at all in France from mid-May to late June or in September. From October to late November Tignes is the only ski area open.

For Brits, France has been the most popular destination for the past two decades taking nearly 40% of the UK market each winter. Fast motorways from the English Channel to the Alps make French resorts the easiest to reach from southern England and it’s also possible to reach many French ski areas direct by Eurostar from London St Pancras railway station.
read more...

Lac L'Airon,November 2012, France

Les Carroz

3:29 pm 16 Nov 2012

Le Garibeuil, France

Valberg

7:13 pm 22 Feb 2009

Pic du Péne Médaa , France

Gourette

8:39 am 7 Dec 2008

Aillon Station vue des pistes, France

Aillons-Margeriaz

1:33 pm 31 Jan 2010

View all photos of France (2345)

France: latest snow conditions round-up


FRANCE The skiing is excellent across the French Alps at present and with sunny skies firmly in place on Thursday 26th February, the overhead conditions were perfect too. Great skiing has been reported by Ski Club Ambassadors in the Espace Killy ski region, encompassing the resorts of Val d'Isere (95/167cm) and Tignes (90/163cm). Some great powder turns were on offer off the pistes and the perfectly groomed powder on piste was providing some amazing turns on the groomers.Conditions were also fantastic in the Portes du Soleil, with Avoriaz (180/290cm) and Morzine (70/195cm) offering great slopes and all lifts in their respective areas open. Across in the Pyrenees the heavy snow has not stopped falling all week, with huge snowfall totals of almost two metres being reported across the mountain range. Cauterets (340/470cm) boasts a huge base depth as a result but was shut due to avalanche concerns on Thursday 26th February. Bareges/La Mongie (220/320cm) was only able to run seven lifts as the avalanche danger hit Level 5 across the mountain range. The treacherous conditions are set to remain over the weekend as mild air comes into the Pyrenees, destabilising the significant new snow drifts. Off piste skiing is not recommended and lift openings may be affected for some days.Fortunately the snow is set to taper off in the Pyrenees but it is set to resume in the Alps this weekend. Around 40-100cm of new snow forecast between now and Tuesday next week for much of the French Alps so some good powder should be on offer next. As with the Pyrenees however pay close attention to the latest avalanche forecasts and stay safe off piste.

read more...

Summary of forecast snowfall and ski conditions for resorts in France. Fresh snow is forecast at 172 resorts. Powder is reported at 33 resorts and 109 are reporting good piste conditions.

Recent Eyeball Reports For France

  1. eyeball reporter Anonymous Report:
    Snowing in La Plagne.
  2. eyeball reporter Anonymous Report:
    Snowing at a moderate rate in La Tania.
  3. eyeball reporter Anonymous Report:
    Snow is falling in Flaine.

A–B

C–K L–L M–R S–Z Best powder (33) Best piste conditions (109)

Ski resorts in France from A to B


Bottom Mid Top
Resort Webcam Top
snow depth
top and bottom
Good piste
on-piste
Powder
off-piste
Fresh snow depth
last snow
Fresh snow depth
next 9 days
0–3 | 3–6 | 6–9
snow (cm)
Weather Next 5 days weather forecast.
Freezing level (m)
Sat Sun Mon Tue Wed

(950m — 2001m)

Abondance webcam
29
69
13
light snow
light snow
light snow
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1476 m
850m 1600m 1800m 1100m 700m

(1550m — 2451m)

snow report 8 days ago

170
70

Excellent

Powder
11 days ago
Another glorious day // 19 Feb
4
7
light snow
light rain
light snow
clear
light snow
Mid station 2000 m
1200m 1900m 2250m 1450m 1000m

(1000m — 1900m)

snow report today

140
50

Good
today
4
46
1
partially cloudy
moderate rain
moderate rain
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1450 m
1050m 2000m 1900m 1300m 750m

(1500m — 2201m)

46
54
3
light snow
light snow
moderate snow
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1850 m
1100m 1750m 1950m 1000m 700m

(1100m — 3350m)

snow report today

Alpe d'Huez webcam
200
121

Excellent

Varied
2 cm
today
45
44
3
cloudy
light snow
light snow
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 2225 m
950m 1900m 2000m 1250m 750m

(1367m — 2200m)

snow report today

100
80

Good
today
3
31
partially cloudy
light rain
light snow
clear
snow showers
Mid station 1784 m
1100m 2050m 2050m 1550m 750m

(1251m — 1808m)

snow report today

90
70
Packed today
1
14
partially cloudy
light rain
moderate rain
clear
snow showers
Mid station 1530 m
1100m 1900m 2100m 1400m 850m

(1400m — 1700m)

snow report today

105
95
Packed 5 days ago
17
44
2
partially cloudy
light rain
light snow
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1550 m
900m 1950m 1900m 1250m 750m

(1050m — 2300m)

snow report today

150
95

Good
3 days ago
48
68
5
snow showers
moderate rain
moderate snow
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1675 m
1000m 1750m 1750m 1100m 600m

(1252m — 3275m)

snow report today

Argentiere webcam
210
42

Fresh

Powder
15 cm
today
93
110
17
light snow
light snow
heavy snow
snow showers
heavy snow
Mid station 2264 m
1050m 1650m 1800m 1100m 600m

(1250m — 2100m)

snow report today

390
290
Wet 3 days ago
6
moderate rain
light rain
moderate rain
partially cloudy
light snow
Mid station 1675 m
1500m 2550m 2700m 1850m 1150m

(1681m — 2111m)

2
10
snow showers
light rain
light snow
clear
light snow
Mid station 1896 m
1300m 2000m 2200m 1500m 950m

(1600m — 3330m)

snow report today

120
60

Good
today
53
39
3
partially cloudy
moderate snow
moderate snow
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 2465 m
1000m 1900m 2000m 1250m 750m

(1600m — 2450m)

snow report yesterday

Auron webcam
140
105

Good
6 days ago
3
1
light snow
partially cloudy
partially cloudy
clear
clear
Mid station 2025 m
1500m 2050m 2600m 1500m 1050m

(1500m — 2750m)

snow report today

Aussois webcam
140
60

Good
4 days ago
43
38
3
light snow
light snow
moderate snow
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 2125 m
1150m 1850m 1950m 950m 650m

(1050m — 1710m)

snow report today

50
30

Good
5 days ago
2
41
1
partially cloudy
light rain
light rain
clear
light snow
Mid station 1380 m
1000m 2100m 2000m 1400m 750m

(1000m — 2460m)

snow report today

290
180
Powder
Powder
25 cm
today
61
89
15
light snow
light snow
moderate snow
snow showers
heavy snow
Mid station 1730 m
850m 1550m 1750m 1050m 650m

(1400m — 2399m)

snow report today

300
200

Good
today
1
12
partially cloudy
partially cloudy
moderate rain
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 1900 m
1250m 2450m 2750m 1950m 1200m

(850m — 1237m)

snow report today

110
90
Packed 5 days ago
5
25
13
partially cloudy
light rain
snow showers
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 1044 m
800m 1750m 1350m 700m 550m

(1250m — 2877m)

snow report today

Bareges & La Mongie webcam
320
280

Good

Powder
100 cm
yesterday
2
7
light snow
light rain
moderate rain
partially cloudy
snow showers
Mid station 2064 m
1500m 2550m 2750m 1900m 1150m

(1000m — 1301m)

6
51
16
partially cloudy
light rain
light rain
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1150 m
850m 1850m 1750m 1000m 650m

(1101m — 1801m)

snow report today

125
55
Packed today
3
30
2
snow showers
moderate rain
heavy rain
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 1451 m
1200m 1800m 1900m 950m 650m

(1000m — 2001m)

snow report today

90
40

Fresh

Fresh
today
16
50
8
partially cloudy
light rain
light snow
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1500 m
950m 1800m 1800m 1200m 750m

(1740m — 2200m)

snow report today

74
64

Good
3 days ago
31
30
2
light snow
light snow
light snow
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 1970 m
1250m 1800m 1950m 1000m 650m

(1350m — 1849m)

snow report today

150
160

Good
2 days ago
4
33
5
light snow
light rain
light snow
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1600 m
1250m 2250m 2150m 1200m 750m

(1430m — 1725m)

snow report 2 days ago

90
60

Good
5 days ago
1
snow showers
partially cloudy
partially cloudy
clear
clear
Mid station 1578 m
1550m 2150m 2850m 2100m 1200m

(1700m — 2001m)

7
partially cloudy
light rain
heavy rain
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 1850 m
1300m 2500m 2900m 2250m 1400m

(1801m — 3001m)

snow report today

165
70

Excellent

Fresh
5 cm
3 days ago
50
36
4
light snow
light snow
moderate snow
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 2401 m
1250m 1800m 1950m 1000m 700m

(900m — 1351m)

29
1
partially cloudy
light rain
moderate rain
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 1126 m
1150m 1650m 1800m 1000m 600m

(1200m — 1600m)

2
25
2
light snow
moderate rain
heavy rain
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 1400 m
1200m 1850m 1950m 1000m 700m

(1200m — 2501m)

3
17
snow showers
light rain
light snow
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 1850 m
1250m 1950m 2100m 1300m 850m

(600m — 2950m)

snow report 24 days ago

Brides Les Bains webcam
95
30

Good
on 24 Mar
30
40
2
partially cloudy
light snow
light snow
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1775 m
1100m 1600m 1800m 1050m 600m

(600m — 1220m)

1
24
11
partially cloudy
light rain
snow showers
light snow
light snow
Mid station 910 m
750m 1750m 1350m 700m 500m
A-B   C-K   L-L   M-R   S-Z

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