The ski season in France is about to kick off and the great news is that temperatures are dropping and the snow is falling, right on time! Montgenevre has reported 45cm (18 inches!) of fresh powder falling in the past 24 hours alone.

Apart from a brief appearance by Les 2 Alps for the October school’s half term holiday week, the only place to ski in France this Autumn has been on the glacier in Tignes which has been open since mid-September, but that change’s this weekend when Europe’s highest resort, Val Thorens in the 3 Valleys, opens for the winter, and all the other French resorts will be hot on its heels, opening en masse from then on.

In the month leading up to Christmas the slopes are not only pretty empty, but (in an attempt to counter that) there are great deals to be had in resort on everything from ski passes to childcare costs. However these can be hard to keep track of so if you are planning a trip, it is worth looking for your chosen resort’s Facebook and/or Twitter accounts – most of the major French resorts now have Facebook though Twitter is still quite rare. It’s a good way to find out what deals are on offer and indeed what’s going on in your resort, ‘live’ as it were.

Many of the big resorts also have festivities planned at the very start of December to try to get people visiting early (a veritable triple whammy of attractions along with the fresh snow and low prices!).

They generally have a familiar theme of the event, a festival ‘village’ of exhibitors and a full on après-ski scene.

Examples include the ‘Rock On Snowoard tour Come To Ski’ at Avoriaz on December 11th/12 which will have 40 brands exhibiting and an amateur freestyle contest or the European Cinema Festival in Les Arcs from 11 - 18 December 2010, an international event designed to celebrate and promote European cinema with directors competing for the coveted ‘Crystal Arrow’ award, last year won by a Brit!

Author: Patrick Thorne

Posted on Thursday 18 Nov 2010

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