Last weekend Les Deux Alpes was the first resort in France to open for summer skiing, and this weekend, Tignes follows suit, with skiing on the Grand Motte glacier.
With both resorts offering skiing right though until September, we can’t think of a better way to get your ski or snowboard fix during in the summer months.
Europe’s largest skiable glacier
With Europe’s largest skiable glacier spanning over 300 acres during the summer, the glacier in Les Deux Alpes is, understandably, a big draw for keen skiers and boarders from across Europe during the summer months.
On top of the mammoth snow fall during the 2011/12 ski season, there have been recent snowfalls and cold temperatures, which, although delaying the start of our summer, means the glacier is in excellent shape for summer skiing from its peak at 3600m all the way down to 3200m.
The glacier opened for summer skiing on 16 June, and will remain open until1 September. Over the summer, over 135,000 skiers and boarders are expected – an average of 2000 people every day.
Many of the these people come from ski clubs across Europe in order to train, whilst the other big groups are those coming to work on freestyle technique in the snowpark, which consists of 2 half pipes, one of which is an Olympic-size super pipe, hips, quarters, modules, whoops, hand rails, and big airs. The park is divided into different ability areas, and has ongoing entertainment including a PA system, DJ decks, BBQ, equipment testing and competitions for beginners.
The glacier will be open daily from 7.15am to 12.30pm, with a lift pass for the full morning costing €35.30 for adults.
In the afternoon, it’s down the mountain to try out the walking or mountain biking routes, or just to work on the suntan in the mountain sunshine at the resort’s swimming pool.
Skiing on the Grande Motte, Tignes
Skiing will open for the summer in Tignes from today, June 22, where 20km of skiing from 300o to 3456m will be open daily from 7.15am to 1.00pm.
As well as downhill skiing, there’s also cross country training, as well as high-altitude training camps for many European sports teams taking place throughout the summer months.
And the Perce Neige funicular (or ‘The Worm’, as it’s affectionately known) takes you up 900m from the centre of Tignes in just seven minutes, which compared to many other glacier resorts, is a very speedy journey (other glacier skiing can take close to an hour to access from the resort below).
From the summit, it’s possible to see across much of the Savoire region, including Mont Pourri, the ridges of Grande Sassière and Mont Blanc in the distance.
Ski school operates on the glacier throughout the summer, so it’s possible to work on your technique ahead of next season. There’s also a snowpark, where professionals and beginners alike can practice their tricks.
A day ticket for the glacier is €30.50 for adults, and includes access to all the pedestrian lifts also open in the resort.
This was the view of the Grande Motte in Tignes yesterday, showing a good coverage of snow across the main slopes.
Images courtesy of www.tignes.net
This post was written by Amy Fletcher for Crystal Ski.