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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.
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Lac L'Airon,November 2012, France

Les Carroz

3:29 pm 16 Nov 2012

Le Garibeuil, France

Valberg

7:13 pm 22 Feb 2009

Perfect pistes. , France

Les Saisies

1:27 pm 30 Dec 2013

 Le Bout du Lac Restaurant Montriond, France

Morzine

7:16 pm 10 Feb 2010

View all photos of France (2287)

France: latest snow conditions round-up


FRANCE Tignes (30cm) enjoyed another sunny day on Thursday 30th October. It is currently our only featured resort open for snowsports. There were six lifts in operation for those out on the slopes. The pistes are currently in a good state but off piste is varied so do take care if you venture off the slopes. The forecast for the coming weekend looks excellent with lots of sunshine and clear skies being predicted.

Summary of forecast snowfall and ski conditions for resorts in France. Fresh snow is forecast at 0 resorts. Powder is reported at 0 resorts and 2 are reporting good piste conditions.

Recent Eyeball Reports For France

  1. eyeball reporter hip hideouts
    RT @simplyvaldisere: Countdown begins soon! #valdisere opens for business 4 weeks on Saturday! #areyouready
  2. eyeball reporter Mountain Mavericks
    Dressing up for #Halloween Send us a picture of your costume! PLEASE!!!! #halloweencostume #HappyHalloween #Morzine
  3. eyeball reporter Hotel L'Aubergade
    Autumn is here, swing by & visit us 2day from 4pm! BYO BBQ from 5pm! C u soon! #BBQ #WinterisComing

A–B

C–K L–L M–R S–Z Best piste conditions (2)

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)
Fri Sat Sun Mon Tue

(950m — 2001m)

Abondance webcam
5
1
clear
clear
clear
clear
rain showers
Mid station 1476 m
3300m 3250m 3000m 2750m 2350m

(1550m — 2451m)

34
clear
clear
partially cloudy
rain showers
moderate snow
Mid station 2000 m
3300m 3250m 2850m 2350m 2100m

(1000m — 1900m)

snow report today

on 25 Mar
7
clear
clear
clear
clear
light rain
Mid station 1450 m
3350m 3250m 2950m 2700m 2300m

(1500m — 2201m)

13
clear
clear
partially cloudy
clear
moderate rain
Mid station 1850 m
3300m 3250m 2950m 2500m 2350m

(1100m — 3350m)

Alpe d'Huez webcam
opens in 36 days
24
5
clear
clear
partially cloudy
clear
moderate snow
Mid station 2225 m
3400m 3300m 2900m 2500m 2400m

(1367m — 2200m)

snow report today

opens in 50 days on 24 Mar
14
clear
clear
partially cloudy
clear
heavy rain
Mid station 1784 m
3400m 3300m 2900m 2550m 2350m

(1251m — 1808m)

opens in 50 days
clear
clear
clear
clear
heavy rain
Mid station 1530 m
3350m 3250m 2850m 2450m 2300m

(1400m — 1700m)

opens in 50 days
10
clear
clear
clear
clear
light rain
Mid station 1550 m
3350m 3250m 2950m 2750m 2250m

(1050m — 2300m)

snow report today

opens in 50 days on 24 Mar
9
1
clear
clear
clear
clear
light rain
Mid station 1675 m
3350m 3250m 3000m 2650m 2400m

(1252m — 3275m)

Argentiere webcam
22
8
clear
clear
partially cloudy
clear
light snow
Mid station 2264 m
3350m 3250m 3050m 2500m 2400m

(1250m — 2100m)

opens in 50 days
13
clear
clear
rain showers
partially cloudy
light snow
Mid station 1675 m
3550m 3350m 2850m 2450m 1700m

(1681m — 2111m)

25
clear
clear
partially cloudy
rain showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1896 m
3250m 3200m 2850m 2350m 2200m

(1600m — 3330m)

27
6
clear
partially cloudy
partially cloudy
clear
moderate snow
Mid station 2465 m
3400m 3300m 2900m 2450m 2350m

(1600m — 2450m)

snow report 38 days ago

Auron webcam
opens in 36 days on 27 Apr
13
clear
clear
clear
rain showers
heavy rain
Mid station 2025 m
3300m 3250m 2900m 2400m 2250m

(1500m — 2750m)

snow report today

Aussois webcam
opens in 50 days on 18 Apr
25
1
clear
clear
partially cloudy
snow showers
light snow
Mid station 2125 m
3300m 3200m 2900m 2350m 2250m

(1050m — 1710m)

snow report today

150
20
Spring 9 days ago
14
clear
clear
clear
partially cloudy
heavy rain
Mid station 1380 m
3350m 3300m 2950m 2650m 2200m

(1000m — 2460m)

opens in 42 days
12
1
clear
clear
clear
clear
rain showers
Mid station 1730 m
3300m 3250m 3000m 2750m 2350m

(1400m — 2399m)

opens in 29 days
6
clear
clear
clear
partially cloudy
light snow
Mid station 1900 m
3500m 3400m 3200m 2800m 1600m

(850m — 1237m)

opens in 43 days
clear
partially cloudy
partially cloudy
light rain
light rain
Mid station 1044 m
3150m 3100m 2950m 2550m 2200m

(1250m — 2877m)

Bareges & La Mongie webcam
opens in 29 days
15
clear
clear
rain showers
partially cloudy
light snow
Mid station 2064 m
3500m 3350m 2900m 2500m 1700m

(1000m — 1301m)

5
clear
clear
partially cloudy
partially cloudy
moderate rain
Mid station 1150 m
3300m 3250m 3000m 2600m 2150m

(1101m — 1801m)

opens in 50 days
6
clear
clear
clear
clear
light rain
Mid station 1451 m
3350m 3250m 2950m 2700m 2350m

(1000m — 2001m)

opens in 43 days
7
clear
clear
clear
clear
rain showers
Mid station 1500 m
3300m 3200m 3000m 2750m 2300m

(1740m — 2200m)

snow report today

on 27 Mar
31
1
clear
partially cloudy
partially cloudy
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 1970 m
3250m 3200m 2800m 2300m 2150m

(1350m — 1849m)

opens in 28 days
5
clear
clear
clear
rain showers
light snow
Mid station 1600 m
3300m 3300m 2950m 2550m 1650m

(1430m — 1725m)

clear
partially cloudy
clear
rain showers
heavy rain
Mid station 1578 m
3300m 3250m 2900m 2350m 2250m

(1700m — 2001m)

8
clear
clear
partially cloudy
partially cloudy
moderate snow
Mid station 1850 m
3550m 3450m 3300m 2700m 1700m

(1801m — 3001m)

opens in 50 days
36
4
clear
partially cloudy
partially cloudy
snow showers
moderate snow
Mid station 2401 m
3250m 3200m 2800m 2250m 2200m

(900m — 1351m)

clear
clear
partially cloudy
rain showers
moderate rain
Mid station 1126 m
3300m 3200m 2950m 2450m 2300m

(1200m — 1600m)

clear
clear
partially cloudy
rain showers
heavy rain
Mid station 1400 m
3300m 3200m 2850m 2350m 2250m

(1200m — 2501m)

17
clear
clear
partially cloudy
rain showers
light snow
Mid station 1850 m
3250m 3200m 2850m 2300m 2200m

(600m — 2950m)

Brides Les Bains webcam
8
clear
clear
clear
clear
light rain
Mid station 1775 m
3300m 3250m 3000m 2500m 2350m

(600m — 1220m)

clear
partially cloudy
partially cloudy
light rain
light rain
Mid station 910 m
3150m 3100m 2950m 2550m 2200m
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