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  1. #1
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    Best Pow Skiing in the Alps/Europe?

    For whatever reason, outside of Wasatch Weather Weenies, its quite difficult to get information on snowfall/climate of the Alps. Maybe its because Pow skiing =BC skiing in Europe and there's not the same emphasis on updating a snow report?? Idk. Regardless could anyone help me out w/the following info

    1. Best Pow Skiing Europe? Do the Swiss, Italian, Austrian, French, Italian mega resorts get 400" inches plus??
    2. Is all off piste "resort skiing" back country skiing? Is there any mitigation on off piste terrain? Any glades, wooded areas that hold stashes that done require guides?
    3. What is the European equivalent of Snowbird- Easy Access, Great terrain, deep pow, etc ?

    Would like to head to Europe March/April but have no concept of what skiing is like over there

  2. #2
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    Theres a 675 page thread called snow for the euros.
    or search function jong.

  3. #3
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    This thread is designed to augment that one

  4. #4
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    You should just head Mt Lodge Sedrun, maggot owned and operated. Vendul will send you the right direction.

    Snowfall isn’t the entire picture.


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  5. #5
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    Search in German.

    That said I haven't found a ton either.

  6. #6
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    I skied all over Europe and I'm now in the French Pyrénées

    Tons of snow, steep terrain, nobody skis off piste.


    Sent from my Armor_3 using Tapatalk

  7. #7
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    Apr 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by SirHeady View Post
    3. What is the European equivalent of Snowbird- Easy Access, Great terrain, deep pow, etc ?

    Would like to head to Europe March/April but have no concept of what skiing is like over there
    IME every Euro resort I've been to is like Snowbird on steroids. Skiing in the Alps is a bit different than Canada or U.S. because of the on-piste/off-piste thing but just have your avalanche kit and a partner and go explore. Snow is snow, no way to predict who is going to get it in April...speaking of which, if the Foehn arrives early it may hose conditions pretty quickly. Ended up bailing to Italian beaches last time I was there in early March because the Foehn nuked everything.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by SirHeady View Post
    For whatever reason, outside of Wasatch Weather Weenies, its quite difficult to get information on snowfall/climate of the Alps. Maybe its because Pow skiing =BC skiing in Europe and there's not the same emphasis on updating a snow report?? Idk. Regardless could anyone help me out w/the following info

    1. Best Pow Skiing Europe? Do the Swiss, Italian, Austrian, French, Italian mega resorts get 400" inches plus??
    2. Is all off piste "resort skiing" back country skiing? Is there any mitigation on off piste terrain? Any glades, wooded areas that hold stashes that done require guides?
    3. What is the European equivalent of Snowbird- Easy Access, Great terrain, deep pow, etc ?

    Would like to head to Europe March/April but have no concept of what skiing is like over there
    If you can't handle your self in the back country, then Europe isn't doing much for you without guides. The norm here, is that people level up and acquire the skills necessary to be self sufficient.

  9. #9
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    So basically if you are a euro skier its either 1. Rip Groomers 2. Park 3. BackCountry?

    There is virtually 0% mitigation on "off piste"/non groomed zones?

    So if you dont have beacon , shovel , probe and your avy 1 you are never skiing pow?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by SirHeady View Post

    So if you dont have beacon , shovel , probe and your avy 1 you are never skiing pow?
    Pretty much, but almost everybody is doing this here. I hardly know anybody who skis and don't have avalanche training. Putting on crampons and an ice axe is just common "ski touring" as well here. Pretty much everybody is doing it. Same for glacier travel etc. If you don't, just get the training you need and start building experience. You will be glad you did, it's not rocket science.

  11. #11
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    Maybe consider a guide.

  12. #12
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    Dec 2008
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    Haha that's funny because it's true.

  13. #13
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    Nov 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by SirHeady View Post
    For whatever reason, outside of Wasatch Weather Weenies, its quite difficult to get information on snowfall/climate of the Alps. Maybe its because Pow skiing =BC skiing in Europe and there's not the same emphasis on updating a snow report?? Idk. Regardless could anyone help me out w/the following info

    1. Best Pow Skiing Europe? Do the Swiss, Italian, Austrian, French, Italian mega resorts get 400" inches plus??
    2. Is all off piste "resort skiing" back country skiing? Is there any mitigation on off piste terrain? Any glades, wooded areas that hold stashes that done require guides?
    3. What is the European equivalent of Snowbird- Easy Access, Great terrain, deep pow, etc ?

    Would like to head to Europe March/April but have no concept of what skiing is like over there
    So ill do my best but I’ve only been to Europe skiing once for 8 days.
    1: best pow skiing is whoever is getting snow, duh. Yes they can and do from my research.
    2: Not sure what you mean by “backcountry”. All off piste is exactly that, off piste. Majority of is not controlled or patrolled. Off piste and you’re in your own. Get a REGA membership. Plenty of wooded areas at the right resorts.
    3: Lol, that can be any and all of them. Think snowbird x10.
    Looking at your dates, why not do the Euro summit or whatever its called this March?? Perfect opportunity to learn the ropes. If not i also highly recommend staying at Vendul’s Mt. Lodge as it’s in the heart of some of the sickest terrain I’ve had the pleasure of skiing. Possibilities are endless and with his local knowledge he can steer you in the right direction.
    Andermatt/Gemstock: tram to the top and all of that plus all the other sides are in play. Thats like 5 snow birds just on this side.
    Click image for larger version. 

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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by SirHeady View Post
    So basically if you are a euro skier its either 1. Rip Groomers 2. Park 3. BackCountry?

    There is virtually 0% mitigation on "off piste"/non groomed zones?

    So if you dont have beacon , shovel , probe and your avy 1 you are never skiing pow?
    No, there is a ton of terrain that requires small boot packs to access sphincter clinching terrain. Again with the “backcountry”, lol.

    Yes, pretty much zero mitigation, big boy pants stuff.
    No, but no fucking way would i go over there without avy gear and the knowledge to use it, or pretty much anywhere for that matter. Shit, i wear my stuff inbounds at certain resorts and during big cycles here in the nanny states.

  15. #15
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    Just go.

    You're smart, just be careful and enjoy.

    The on/off piste is not binary, it's not rational, it contains the reals and exists outside your imagination.

    The skiing is ah-mazing and every skier should experience it. Andermatt/Disentis SkiArena is arguably the snowiest spot in the Alps. St. Anton is also amazing and snowy, but more overrun.

    For first time, go to Switzerland because it's easy.

    For max flex, be prepared with the avie essentials, but it's hysterical how many Euros just stay on the piste and leave scraps along the sides.
    Merde De Glace On the Freak When Ski
    >>>200 cm Black Bamboo Sidewalled DPS Lotus 120 : Best Skis Ever <<<

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by SirHeady View Post
    For whatever reason, outside of Wasatch Weather Weenies, its quite difficult to get information on snowfall/climate of the Alps. Maybe its because Pow skiing =BC skiing in Europe and there's not the same emphasis on updating a snow report?? Idk. Regardless could anyone help me out w/the following info

    1. Best Pow Skiing Europe? Do the Swiss, Italian, Austrian, French, Italian mega resorts get 400" inches plus??
    Depends on the weather.
    All of them? No. Some of them, yes.
    2. Is all off piste "resort skiing" back country skiing? Is there any mitigation on off piste terrain? Any glades, wooded areas that hold stashes that done require guides?
    More or less.

    One should be prepared like any sidecountry stateside/Canada.

    That said, there's lots of loose snow along the edges of the pistes.

    Yes.

    3. What is the European equivalent of Snowbird- Easy Access, Great terrain, deep pow, etc ?
    St. Anton, St. Moritz, Davos/Klosters, Andermatt/Disentis/SkiArena, Verbier (10 snowbirds in 1), Chamonix (30 snowbirds), Val d'Isere/Tigne/Espace Killy to name a few.


    Would like to head to Europe March/April but have no concept of what skiing is like over there
    Just go.

    More info: https://www.tetongravity.com/forums/...-March-21-2019

    and
    https://www.tetongravity.com/forums/...mtlodge-sedrun
    Merde De Glace On the Freak When Ski
    >>>200 cm Black Bamboo Sidewalled DPS Lotus 120 : Best Skis Ever <<<

  17. #17
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    A lot of the off piste terrain in Europe us avie contrôled

    If it would slide into a groomed run, it's bombed.

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  18. #18
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    There are freeride zones (nu skool) or "ski routes" (old skool) which are avie controlled.
    Generally 10m of snowfall is rare, but 500cm of euro snowfall creates a 250cm base (100 Fahrenheit non SI inches ) because it's more like pnw snow than Utah dry blower.

    And I didn't know that it is 19/20 is the official ikon year?

    Sent from my BLA-L29 using TGR Forums mobile app
    It's a war of the mind and we're armed to the teeth.

  19. #19
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    Also, depending on timing and how they judge you, you might be able to get a Euro mag or two to show you around...


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  20. #20
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    Dec 2009
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    One of the first things I got wrong when I started posting on here, was not understanding the difference between designated ski routes here and what you have in the states inbound/outbound skiing. Klar immediately set me to rights then, but I still don't fully understand the north American system.
    Ski routes are within a skiing area and will be avie controlled, therefore marked as open or closed depending on the situation. The route is normally marked with a red square standing on edge. I think that's the same in all of the Alps? There are areas that are closed to skiing, also touring, due to wildlife concerns or reforestation (or military training areas) which should be marked on maps . Except for that you are responsible for yourself. I think that should be about it?
    Snowwise it really depends on weather, but subtle, buster and co have much more knowledge and experience here.
    My 2 cents for Tyrol, St Anton ist a safe bet for snow quantity, other areas suffer more at the whim of local weather patterns, especially the Föhn. But one Sides Föhn means the other side's bad weather normally.

  21. #21
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    Just to add, from my very limited experience, pick a place that is not all above tree line. You need trees on storm days,

    Let's do some livin'
    After, we die

  22. #22
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    Plenty of ungroomed ski itineraries that are both marked and avalanche controlled in European resorts. You’ll need to get there fast or show a bit more imagination if you want to find untracked powder

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Benny Profane View Post
    Just to add, from my very limited experience, pick a place that is not all above tree line. You need trees on storm days,
    I had good luck skiing trees in Davos. Not so much at a place like Engelberg.
    I used to hike 2 hours for 10 minutes of turns on 207 gs skis, without needing “skins” or “hike mode.” Tell me again how I’m a gaper.
    -mikdes26

  24. #24
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    I've been shut out of skiing more in the Alps than in the states. That's one reason to go to places where there's tree skiing at least nearby.

    Verbier has decent tree skiing over in Tzoumaz and Nendaz, but it can be a white out going back and forth. Bruson is another good place for storm days and even after when the k00ks are plundering the main zones.

    Similarly around Andermatt, Am@ proper sucks in storm, lots of whiteout. But lower Disentis or Airolo have stashes. Even La Grave has some great tree skiing on the upper half of P1.

    Both Serre Chevalier and Claviere have incredible larch glades.

    Vars has some stashes as does Puy St. Vincent, but Puy recently made some great tree skiing sort of off limits.
    Merde De Glace On the Freak When Ski
    >>>200 cm Black Bamboo Sidewalled DPS Lotus 120 : Best Skis Ever <<<

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    I think tree line in a lot of the Alps is around 2000m or so. You definitely want the tree option. Got tons of great tree skiing in Tyrol, Austria. Highly recommend.

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