Winter is upon us, and hopefully this means an extraordinary season of skiing and snowboarding. Now is the time to start arranging your skiing trips before the accommodation is all booked up, flight prices rise and you’re no longer able to hit the slopes. If you’re an experienced skier or snowboarder in need of a little inspiration, please have a read of our overview of three of the best expert areas around the globe.
Espace Killy, French Alps
This linked ski area between Val d’Isere and Tignes offers skiers and snowboarders of all abilities over 300km of pistes. However, what truly puts this area on the map for expert skiing is the Tignes ski area. Its piece de resistance is the fantastic Grande Motte Glascier, which can be reached from the town of Val Claret. From mid-November, the vertical red from the glacier all the way down to Val Claret opens – a drop of 1,350m that resorts in North Americans can’t top. As an experienced skier, you will also thoroughly enjoy the powder terrain in Tignes. As a purpose-built resort, Tignes does not have as many wooden chalets that you might normally associate with the French Alps. However, there are some fantastic ski hotels in the Tignes area, including adult-only chalet hotels booked through markwarner.co.uk/ski-holidays so you can thoroughly enjoy the après ski facilities without any fuss.
Jackson Hole, US
The vertical drop in Jackson Hole Mountain Resort can rival the one in Tignes with 1,260m. Located in the Grand Tetons, this area actually consists of two mountains, Apres Vous and Rendezvous. The estimation is that 50% of all 139 runs are for experts. Skiers and snowboarders looking for challenging slopes should focus on the Rendezvous Mountain, which holds the legendary Corbet’s Couloir. The Rendezvous Mountain also gives access to the Hobacks, a fantastic ungroomed area. Be sure to do good research into your accommodation, as you can stay close to the slopes but away from the city at Teton Village, or travel around 30 minutes to the slopes every day but enjoy the hustle and bustle of Jackson.
A little further afield is the Niseko resort in Japan. The biggest resort in Japan, this ski area offers phenomenal powder and off piste skiing. It is a very snow certain resort with guaranteed snow fall from December to February each year. There is a slight downside though – compared to resorts in the States and Europe, it is on the smaller side. There are about 29 lifts and 55km of slopes. However, it will offer an once-in-a-lifetime experience in an amazing country combining alpine and tree skiing with great terrain variety. Again, researching accommodation is a must as there is little ski-in, ski-out accommodation. As it’s no longer such a hidden gem, it might get busy. None of that matters much though, when you’re ploughing your way through the powder snow.
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