Les Houches Ski Resort Guide
7 am 26 Mar 2017(local time) Weather Forecast for Les Houches at m altitude issued:
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Les Houches Ski Resort Guide
- Acres of ski:-
- Terrain Parks:-
- X-Country:15 km
Les Houches is the home of the world famous Khandahar Verte des Houches Downhill ski run, hosting the Chamonix Valley leg of the World Cup circuit in early January of each year. Although a rather small resort, the 47 km of runs offer a good variety of alpine skiing sweeping down through woodland on the north-western slopes of Mont Blanc, the white dome of which tower's above the ski area. A number of race clubs use Les Houches as a training ground so, understandably, the standard of skiing is generally on the high side. Les Houches is also the winter training base for the British Ski Academy. Whilst not an area large enough to consider for an exclusive trip, unless specifically for training, it is well worth paying a visit if skiing in the Chamonix valley. For Intermediates and above, with the exception of race days, you can ski the Khandahar from the 1860m summit, back to the town centre at the resorts base, uninterrupted.
Les Houches is at last being managed by the Chamonix Lift Company and many changes are scheduled for next season (2012-2013) with new lifts and expanded pistes. In the meantime the two terrain parks have been closed. This gives more space for the resort's traditional use for race-training and instructor development courses.
- Nearest Airport:Geneva
- Nearest Train Station:Houches
- Tourist Office Phone:+33450555062
- Tourist Office Website:www.leshouches.com
- Slopeside accommodation:yes
Announcements & News from the Les Houches ski resort manager
Spring-like conditions prevail in Les Houches and the weather in general feels like mid April rather than late March. The major storms that are still crossing the Atlantic hold some hope of winding our clock back and returning more wintry conditions, but in the meantime we are soldiering on with what we have. About three centimetres of snow fell on the upper slopes last night, and this has improved things a little. Nonetheless the situation now is that the village runs are closed, though could be negotiated if you are a bold ski-touring enthusiast. Almost everywhere else at Les Houches has rather thin cover. Freeze and thaw cycling means that things are seriously firm when the lifts open and a bit too soft to be any fun by mid afternoon. Plan your ski day accordingly and you will still have fun, but try to avoid continuing after the snow gets wet and sticky. Those conditions are no fun at all.
I spent this morning skiing off piste at Balme, where the conditions were slightly tricky with many wind-blown areas and breakable crust on most surfaces. But the sprinkling of fresh snow did allow some excellent turns to be made here and there. The season goes on; and I am still holding Les Grands Montets in reserve for April...
Check conditions the webcams here:
You can check the status of all the lifts and slopes in the Chamonix valley on this new website:
Although relatively low, Les Houches is deeply shaded in the early months of the season. In combination with extensive snow-making and excellent piste management this allows it to offer reliable skiing conditions which attract race teams and instructor-training groups. And it is part of the iconic Chamonix region of course.
Les Houches has many mountain restaurants. If you have gourmet inclinations you may like to sample the super Vieille Luges, the cool and stylish L'Hors Piste, or the atmospheric La Taniere. A surprising large number of other mountain restaurants offer alternatives at lower cost. At the bottom of the lifts there is the quirky Kitch Inn near the Bellevue cable-car, and Le Spot just across the road. At the Prarion lift Eric Jaquier's very professional boulangerie has expanded to become a welcome cafe-bar. Perhaps arrive early and breakfast at one of these places before riding the first lift up to make the most of the best snow and the quietest pistes. It's a very effective tactic in busy periods like half-term and the Easter holidays.
The Compagnie Mont Blanc website shows an accurate map and webcams for you to check the slopes of Les Houches and all the other areas. There have been changes this year. Another drag-lift has been removed. The useful Point d'Orientation Poma is no more and the resort now has only two remaining draglifts. So use this link for information about the skiing here and throughout the Chamonix valley:
If you make irregular visits to the Chamonix valley for only a few days at a time you would benefit from buying a rapid card. This is an annual pass which debits your credit card automatically whenever you ski (or use the summer lifts). The daily rates are discounted and you avoid queuing at the ticket office. So it's not only very convenient, but it will pay for itself quite quickly if you visit frequently. In fact it almost pays for itself if you merely ride the Aguille du Midi lift once. And why wouldn't you? See here for details:
Finally, a reminder that the latest-style of lift passes can be re-used after paying online. This includes hands-free passes from other ski areas. They can all be re-charged for Chamonix or elsewhere by visiting the appropriate website. There is no discount given this way, but you will never have to queue at a ticket office again. A huge convenience.
Latest Snow Reportview full snow report
- Issued:24 Mar
- Last Snowfall:23 March 2017
- Snow Depth (upper):100cm
- Snow Depth (lower):100cm
- Piste:Spring snow
Today’s Weather (1434 m)view full snow forecast
Les Houches Location Maps
Visitor Reviews of Les Houches
mary from Ireland writes:
Second time to Les Houches. Really long queues to get up the mountain and many hundreds of children given priority so we had to wait nearly an hour, on 2 separate days, to get on the gondola. Also had to wait another hour to get the lift passes so it was 2 hours to get up the mountain on our first day. Trails down were ice rock and grass yet remained open. Would not recommend this resort.