- highest ski resort in france/highest town?
Avoriaz is quite low. I was under the impression that Briancon is the highest “town” in France, and at 1300m it’s the bottom end of the Serre Chevalier ski area. There are many many villages higher than that though, the highest (lift-served) skiing in France being the Grande MOtte glacier in tignes.
Are you training for skiing or biking? And *when* are you doing this? Tignes has just announced they’ll be closing the summer skiing a week earlier than planned just to some crevasses that have opened up at the bottom of the summer ski areaPosted 6 years agooliverd1981Member
Val Thoren likes to stylize itself as “Europes highest City” but obvoislly only has a reall popluation in the winter.
One of the smaller tignes villages would be nice enough in summer I guess, not much variety of roads if darkside is your thing but poetntially epic singletrack.Posted 6 years agochrssmaleMember
Depends on what you want to go for, I’m assuming you’re asking about skiing/boarding rather than cycling.Posted 6 years ago
Sorry but Pas de la Casa is not higher than places in France. And from experience it can be hit and miss with the snow. When theres powder in Andorra its good, but too much sun and the pistes turn to ice.
As already posted, Val Thorens is higher 2300m, however its a concrete jungle, but out of all the surrounding resorts one of the cheapest, and has many miles of runs, especially if you get the 3 valleys pass. Though to get to Courchevel and back can be abit of a mission before all the lifts close. Therefore, although lower Meribel or Mottaret are ideal locations for the 3 valleys.
However up the road you also have les Arcs/la Plange (upto 1950m) very good gor boarding, some lovely runs.
But IMHO the creme de la creme would have to be Tignes/Val D’isere, Val D’isere is a bit more upmarket than Tignes, if you want the altitude, then Val Claret just up from Tignes is at 2200m. However, I wouldn’t recommend Tignes/Val for beginners. When theres snow, pure offpiste heaven.
Already looking forward to the snow.B.A.NanaMember
Nearby, Monte Rosa Glacier probably has the most extensive summer skiing. Access is from resorts Cervinia, Italy or Zermatt, Switzerland. Not in France, but probably just a few hours extra drive to Cervinia certainly, for more extensive skiing. Summer Euro skiing always appears to me to be the sport of the filthy rich, locals or uber national squad skiers. Certainly, my experience is that they are predominantly local kids and/or national squads in training. The window is fairly small each day, usually a packed first lift at 8am and off the piste at 1pm or there abouts, so a shorter day. Overall, you get much less skiing for your money.Posted 6 years ago
EDIT: Due to your desire to get high altitude, I’m assuming out of season skiing.
I did some training in Val based in the campsite on the way out of the town on the Iseran road. Over the Iseran and back is a couple of thousand metres of climbing that’s never steep so you can rev yourself to suffocation. Val lives year round unlike many resorts where you can’t even buy a loaf of bread out of season. I like the place, especially the Belvarde face with fresh snow on it. Maeva rent flats in Tigne for sensible money, right in the centre and trendy in a 70s orange sort of way.Posted 6 years ago
The wisdom in my part of the world where we have 2350m from the town centre to the top of the local resort is to mix and match periods at altitude with periods on the plain. Too much time up the hill and you lose strength and muscle condition. You also suffer a period of fatigue a week or so after you come down if you spend too much time high. Cardio-vascular work up the hill and strength work on theplain is what we do.
Don’t expect miracles in terms of haematocrit BTW. Mine remains around 43 even after two or three weeks between 1500 and 2500. It is however a good alibi for high red blood cell levels achieved by other means. Find a refuge at 3500m if you want to up your haematocrit – and expect to feel weak as a kitten when you come back down.Posted 6 years agodepth-junkieMember
Ski Towns :- As others have said, Val disere 1850m (village height) Slightly lover than Tignes or Val Thorens. But Val disere is a proper village and not just purpose built for skiing. So there is life there all year round (shops etc open)
Val d and tignes share the same lift and road systems any how, but Val D is a 100 times better Village than either Tignes or Val Thorens. I have been to all 3, Albeit for skiing and not cycling and have been out to Val dise 5 times and just about to make it 6 in march next yr. bring on the snow 😀
Dont know about cycling/altitude training in the area, as i have only visited them for the skiing.Posted 6 years agostevomcdSubscriber
I’d actually disagree with some of the previous Tignes vs Val d’Isere comments (I live just down the road!).
Tignes is geared-up for people coming to train for skiing and to train at altitude all year round (lots of pro athletes/teams from many sports come to train). As such, there are more and better facilities for such things open all year round. e.g., there is a good gym & spa complex which remains open almost all year. There are always shops, etc. open although many restaurants, ski-shops etc. do close. I go up to use the gym/spa and climbing wall quite a lot.Posted 6 years ago
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