copyright 1994,1995 Wesley Alan Wright
|Tignes/Val D'Isere...Still too big to describe with numbers, but...|
|Base||(La Daille): 1785m (5856')||Summit||Summit: 3300m (10826')|
|Maximum Skiable Vertical||1370m (4494')||Skied Vertical||977m (3205')|
One of those names that gets etched into your brain from the first day you pick up a ski magazine. Val d'Isere. L'Espace Killy home to Jean Claude Killy, and to the infamous 1992 Olympic downhill on the Face de Bellevarde. Along with Tignes, 25,000
acres of skiable terrain five times the size of
If you want the party line on L'Espace Killy, there's a whole slew of
commercial info on the web regarding Tignes and Val D'Isere: from Ski In,
Tignes is discussed in French and
and Val is discussed in
French and English.
From SkiFrance, Tignes in French and Tignes in
Val in French and
Val in English.
I rode up the AeroSki from near my hotel in Tignes Le Lac, and
straight down to La Daille, some 1000m below.
the Funival - another subway to the sky - climbs 1000m into the sky to the top
of le Rocher de Bellvarde. Here, there is only one logical piste down:
the Face Olympic de Belvarde course of the 1992 men's Olympic Downhill into
the town of Val D'Isere. Hard, bumpy snow. Not too steep or tough, although it would
be at 100+KPH!!
From town, I wandered back up Belvarde and over to the Rocher du Chavret. When
I got off the chair, I saw that just about everyone was ducking under the rope
and past a "Warning: this area not patrolled!" sign, so I did, too. This proved
to be the Tour Charvet, apparently one of the many "classic" off-piste tours
in the area. Some good snow here and there, but a wee bit crowded. Not too
tough, but draw-dropping beautiful.
The path led down to a lone lift in the middle of nowhere. At this point, I was completely lost.
Since it was there and I was there, I rode the lift and gazed at the massive
trail map trying to figure out where the heck I was. Finally at the top, I was
able to orient myself and discern my position. I considered my next move.
I wanted to head off to the high glaciers, but I got on the wrong lift to get
there. Oh well...
When I got to the top, I again saw a couple of folks ducking under a rope, so
I did too...
another classic. This was a long and empty run
with gorgeous views and excellent snow. It, too, wandered down to the mystery
lift (Manchet Express, it turns out), which I rode up and then skied down to a
small restaurant near Lac d'Ouillette for sun and lunch.
From here, I rode a short lift up to the Tete de Solaise. Down into town again,
up the old Belvarde cable car, down towards the Vallee Purdue and then up the
Lavachet ridge, and then down back into Tignes Le Lac. While the rest of the
day was great, the final spiel was long and crowded, with slow lifts and lift
lines and hard, lousy snow. Oh, well.
Back to Day 07 Tignes or on toDay 09 Tignes
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Wesley Alan Wright
Last update November 15, 1995