Ski Resort Report: Un Bon Retour, Les Trois Vallees, France 1-8 March, 2015

11 Mar

By Stuart Elliott

Can there be a better place in the world to ski than Les Trois Vallees? I’ve returned for the tenth time and loved it as much as the first.

At 450 kms of piste it may no longer be able to claim to have the largest skiable area in the world, but you can ski from valley to valley without having to walk or catch buses and it’s sufficiently high that much of it can be skied from mid-November to mid-May.

It has every kind of terrain from beautiful fir tree lined lower altitude pistes to stark blue glaciers higher up. 

You’ll have your pick of real black pistes (as opposed to reds marked black just to satisfy a quota), as well as runs belonging to all other colours of the rainbow, plus almost endless off-piste opportunities. And I defy you to claim there is more breathtaking scenery; anywhere.

Mountain eating haunts range from cheapish self-service to the designer food variety. We tend to go for the long lunch with table service and a little wine (although I’m not sure the insurance company would agree with this description). 

This is mainly because Sharon’s feet have become modified in shape over the years due to excessive stamping on the floor (i.e. flamenco dance) rendering her boots less than comfortable. Nothing to do with my need for alcohol of course. However a few glasses of red with lunch does greatly improve my skiing. In fact I am not sure the old body could endure two hours of post lunch skiing without a bit of the Bacchus treatment.

Author left with ski buddy Michael C. right at a favourite piste stop run by local farmers turned restaurateurs Claudine and Alfred.

Best tarte tatin on the mountain. At 2 Lacs. That wedge missing was our piece!

Snowboarding son Tristan and his fiance Jenny joined us for three days.

 And if you need a break from hurtling down mountain sides, there is always snow shoe walking up to timbered mountain refuges, black with age, engulfed in that magnificent silence that only snow covered pine trees and mountains can provide. Why wasn’t I born a French?

However just to make sure my assertion is correct we are off to do the Sella Ronda in the Italian Dolomites, which claims to have 1000 kms of pistes! Hold me back.


Merci beaucoup to our chalet mates in Meribel Les Allues for sharing Chalet Sardonnere with us, L to R Tristan, author, Rick, Debbie, Jenny and Michael (Sharon took this and all other photos). Two years in the planning and the week passed in the blink of an eye.

5 Responses to “Ski Resort Report: Un Bon Retour, Les Trois Vallees, France 1-8 March, 2015”

  1. Michelle and Bryan March 11, 2015 at 4:06 pm #

    Welcome back to the French Alps! Great photos – I remember Meribel les Allues from when we worked for Silver Ski back in 1996! (we ran a chalet in Morel).
    Love from us both.Michelle and Bryan.xx

    • Sharon Tickle March 11, 2015 at 4:30 pm #

      Hi Michelle & Bryan, Have you skiied the Dolomites? Have to confess I am loving it! Sxx

      • Michelle and Bryan March 12, 2015 at 10:06 am #

        No we haven’t. Only skied at Sauze d’Oulx many years ago. Interesting food in Italian ski resorts – pasta, pasta and more pasta. So hope they cater better for vegetarians than they used to! enjoy the blue skies…we have snow forecast from this weekend and all next week…xxx

      • Sharon Tickle March 12, 2015 at 6:16 pm #

        Michelle, The lunchtime staple on the snow is minestrone but at night the hotel chef cooks to order so I am enjoying the best meals ever! Hotel Cristallo is one to remember. Sxx

  2. Rick Terpstra March 16, 2015 at 8:44 am #

    Brilliant photos guys! Well done. Such a beautiful place and a lovely week. We’ve sent these to our friends to share. It was worth the two years waiting and planning!!! Rick & Debbie

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