Europe 2010 - 2011 Trip Plans/Thoughts/Reviews Thread

skiflat

Old n' Crusty
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I love these threads and seeing where people are going to ski, so time for the

<span style='font-size: 20pt'><span style='font-family: Arial Black'>Europe 2010 - 2011 Trip Plans/Thoughts/Reviews Thread</span></span>

Not sure I will make this list for 2010/2011 but for 2011/2012 it's a definite!

I might even change my current USA trip in 2011 to Europe, if I find a nice airfare
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I am finally skiing Europe after pulling my finger out and ditching the USA.

Thanks CM
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Snorkler

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CarveMan said:
As mentioned in the other thread, if Alaska doesn't happen, Chamonix is on the cards again.

No more info than that, decision will be made around October I suppose.

You really know how to make us envious
 
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CarveMan

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Hey - I could end up going nowhere! If I can't afford the right holiday, I won't bother & keep saving for the following year.

No point compromising and skiing somewhere second rate just for the sake of it.
 

skiflat

Old n' Crusty
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CM - Just spent the past 20 mins trying to find your previous advice for me on Europe if I change my plans and head there in 2011, if not 2012!!!!

Found some pretty good airfares for me on Emirates, so it's a chance....
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What we like:
Blue/Black groomers
Some off-piste to play in
Moguls to play in
No guided stuff like you like though, not good enough for that yet
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Budget - Whatever really

For Europe I really have no idea where to start which is probably why I keep putting it off.

My TA has previously recommended Lech/St Anton for a week and then the 3 Valleys

Thoughts CM and others
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CarveMan

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I've been to Lech after the season and it is a very pretty place, plus I've only ever heard great things about the skiing there so that is definitely one for the list.

I've spent a month in the 3V and a week in Val d'Isere, and I'd give Val d'Isere the edge over Courchevel (although not by much). In fact I think it's just about perfect for what you are after.

Excellent terrain variety, amazing modern lift system, wide freeway groomers and vast off-piste, but not death-defying unless you are actively looking for it. It's joined with Tignes which you can access extremely easily and there's enough terrain to keep you occupied for weeks. Snow is reliable as far as Europe goes, but it's high and there's lots of snowmaking. Wherever you end up, make sure you will be doing the bulk of your skiing above 2000m.

It's not cheap, doesn't have to be ridiculously expensive either.

The trick is to avoid the French school holidays in February - it gets very crowded then and the prices skyrocket.

We stayed at this hotel - http://www.lagalise.com/ - it was ski in and 50m walk to ski out, although on a few mornings we caught the bus to Le Fornet to get the jump on the powder hounds. Bus was 20m from the hotel.


HOWEVER, as I'm not as well travelled in Europe as I would like to be, so I'm going to try to avoid doing the usual ski.com.au special, ie: "OMG I've been to Hotham and Whistler and Whistler is the bestest place in the world, it's better than any where else even though I've only skied there!!!!!11111" - so I'll think some more about places with excellent reputations.
 
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skiflat

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Thanks - Sounds likes Lech & 3V are great for the first Europe trip!

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adsman

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Heading off on my honeymoon in Dec, over a year late but worth the wait. 4 weeks in europe hitting the slopes in Chamonix and Innsbruck, sending a fews day in each.

Chamonix will be a white Christmas!
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CarveMan

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So of the places I haven't been, the main one I can think of that's worth looking at is Zermatt.

My sister just spent a week there on her honeymoon and loved it.

If you were doing Austria it would all tie in pretty well with flights out of Zurich.
 

skiflat

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Thanks so much CM!!!
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So undecided at the moment to either fly East or West out of Australia!
 
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Heinz

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skidown said:
What we like:
Blue/Black groomers
Some off-piste to play in
Moguls to play in
No guided stuff like you like though, not good enough for that yet
frown.gif

Budget - Whatever really

For Europe I really have no idea where to start which is probably why I keep putting it off.

My TA has previously recommended Lech/St Anton for a week and then the 3 Valleys

Thoughts CM and others
smile.gif

There would be at least several dozen resorts matching those criteria in the Alps in Austria, Switzerland, France & Italy. These will range from the obvious well known choices which attracts lots of foreigners, mega interlinked resort complexes, and smaller resorts more frequented by locals.

I've been to several but have still barely scratched the surface. I'll lista few here off the top of my head.

Some of the obvious big names : St. Anton, Chamonix, Val d'Isere, Verbier, Zermatt. These are all worth checking out for various reasons. Chamonix's value is pretty clear from Carveman's threads. Zermatt of course has the Matterhorn - great sight. Depends a bit if you like a really international area where you will probably run into more foreigners than locals.

Some of the Mega areas : 3 Vallees, Porties du Soliel, Saalbach Hinterglemm, Ski Amade, Dolomiti region. These are areas where you can ski to a whole host of different areas with some bus where you could probably go a week without skiing the same run twice if you wanted to.

Other reasonably well known areas with good terrain : Engelberg, Ischgl, Laax/Flims ...

Then there are resorts in the Montafon valley in Austria that are less well known.

Here is an indication of how many there are :
http://www.bergfex.com
 
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'H' Jones

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skidown said:
Thanks - Sounds likes Lech & 3V are great for the first Europe trip!

biggrin.gif

I have been to Lech, Zurs and ST Anton as well as Zermatt, remind me on my return and will be happy to give some detailed thoughts. (Too hard to type long replies on my phone !)
 
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skiflat

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Heinz: Thanks - More research for me to do!

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CarveMan

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I think with the resorts that will inevitably get shortlisted by concensus on this thread, you really can't go wrong.

I don't think Chamonix would suit, nor would I necessarily recommend Verbier for what you are after.
 

skiflat

Old n' Crusty
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Yep at this stage Cham/Verbier are not what I am after!

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Amex found me some "cheap" seats on Singapore Air.....

Hmmmmmmm options, options, options.

I am 90% set on Europe now, can easily cancel the seats I have booked on VA (which are not really booked now...) as the payment stuffed up and didn't process.. Same thing as happened last year when I booked...and they have to process it "manually"

So I have no seats currently booked

HMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

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skiflat

Old n' Crusty
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No wonder you ditched Singapore for their crappy baggage allowance last year.

They give 30kgs in business, very poor, and then it's 60 per kg over that!

Skis/poles alone in a ski bag are about 10kgs, then ski boots another few kgs.

Leaves about 15 kgs for everything else

Very poor form from Singapore

The 2 x 32kgs on V Australia plus only $50 for a ski bag and boot bag is great value!
 

CarveMan

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If I go to Europe again, I would go Emirates via Sydney which means an A380 to Dubai.

Got that tip from an Emirates cabin crew while on the DXB-CDG leg when I was telling the story about how bad the A340 was. Incidentally the DXB-CDG flight was great.
 

skiflat

Old n' Crusty
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Ah yes I remember asking you about the flight after you said it was average.

The A340 is a shite plane!

The A380 is the ONLY plane I would want to fly on with Emirates, everything else is a mixed bag as to if you get the new seats, the better/bigger in flight entertainment system etc etc.
 

skiflat

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rangerider said:
Have you been on the A380 CM? I've heard they are very slow to load and unload.

I have been on Qantas twice.

No different to any other plane but i was getting off the upper deck so not sure what was happening in cattle class down below!
 
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rangerider

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Sounds ok then, (for some). I'd be on the lower deck unfortunately. My new fave plane is the 777-200 though it was hot as hell on the flight back from Tokyo. It's time to axe 747's they suck.
 

Born2ski

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skidown said:
I might even change my current USA trip in 2011 to Europe, if I find a nice airfare
smile.gif
I swear you were a woman in a previous life, always changing your mind. In fact I know a woman called Julia who is just like you.
tongue.gif
 
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skiflat

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Born2ski said:
skidown said:
I might even change my current USA trip in 2011 to Europe, if I find a nice airfare
smile.gif
I swear you were a woman in a previous life, always changing your mind. In fact I know a woman called Julia who is just like you.
tongue.gif

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- Julia and I are very alike actually
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I blame CM for trying to get me to Europe actually!
 
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skiflat

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None, which is why I need to pull my finger out and do it.

I love the USA and having a nice big apartment, Walmart, etc etc

But I can't compare when I haven't been to Europe!

You ventured to Europe at all ?
 

Born2ski

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Well in that case Skidown I'd say you need to experience some of Europe. It's just something you have to do at least once even if you then decide to come back to North America.

Yes we've been to Dolomites Italy, 3 Vallees France and 4 Valleys Switzerland. Next time I go back to Europe I'd like to try somewhere in Austria. So many places in the world to ski and so little time.
 

skiflat

Old n' Crusty
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Born2ski: I agree, time to venture outside my comfort zone
CM: You are an evil evil man. I am loving powder now after having about 4 10-15inch powder days on my last trip. I can actually turn in it now
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Airfares - Virgin Atlantic is top of the list for me as they will give me lots of Velocity (Virgin Blue) points and it's a guaranteed product so won't be disappointed with a older style plane at the last minute. Also 3 x 32kgs baggage allowance
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Also means I don't have to book airfares for another 6 months intead of today/tomorrow (to take advantage of the V Australia promo) I would prefer the cash in my pocket for 6 more months than Mr Bransons....

I assume there is very little/no reason for a car in Lech, Val d'Isere, or the 3V?

Breakfast and Dinners included so that "reduces" the on paper pricing that I have for the accommodation by around $1200-$1500 per week

Carveman

I am going to Europe!!!!!!!!!!!

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CarveMan

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However I'm not sure I want the responsibility if you get skunked!

That said, the European towns are great so if the snow isn't brilliant you can enjoy the culture, food, drink etc etc.

A car is a liability in Europe - public transport is fantastic.
 

CarveMan

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CarveGirl with the Bellevarde in the background and the famous 'Face' olympic run. Edges required.

DSC_0024.jpg


Solaise sector from halfway up the Bellevarde:

DSC_0039.jpg


Top of the Solaise from the top of the Bellevarde:

DSC_0052.jpg


Glacier area at the very top of Val d'Isere:

P1030456.jpg


Looking across to the Grand Motte which is the glacier at the top of Tignes:

DSC_0058.jpg


Looking back at the back of the Bellevarde and the top of the runs that make up the La Daille sector:

DSC_0086.jpg


Tignes down below, Mt Blanc Massif in the background:

DSC_0113.jpg


Tignes Funicular:

P1030390.jpg


La Daille Funicular:

P1030698.jpg



These photos comprise about 30-40% of the skiable terrain in Espace Killy.
 
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skiflat

Old n' Crusty
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WOW

What are the orange things on the Funicular? do you stand behind them and hang on ?

Yeh well I may get skunked with snow, but no point worrying about it. It's not like I am stuck in Falls Creek for three weeks in bad snow!

Just wait until I find some nice weather forecast sites that I can post daily on here from November until late Jan when I leave
tongue.gif
 
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skiflat

Old n' Crusty
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Here is another complete beginners question...

Is English widely spoken in most restaurants and shops ?
 

skiflat

Old n' Crusty
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<span style='font-size: 20pt'><span style='font-size: 17pt'><span style='font-family: Arial Black'><span style='font-family: Arial Black'><span style='font-size: 20pt'><span style='font-family: Impact'>The Europe 2010/2011 Crew </span></span></span>
</span></span></span>

<span style='font-size: 17pt'><span style='font-family: Arial Black'><span style='font-family: Century Gothic'>Early Bookers</span></span></span>

'H' Jones....................Zermatt - Jan 11th for 2 weeks
Ulmerhutte.................St Anton - Whole of Feb
skidown.....................Lech/3V/Val d'Isere for 2-5 weeks TBD
rangerider...................Somewhere
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<span style='font-family: Impact'><span style='font-size: 14pt'>Useful Links </span></span>

<span style='font-size: 11pt'><span style='font-family: Impact'>General</span></span>
Coming Soon

<span style='font-size: 11pt'><span style='font-family: Impact'>Snow Cams</span></span>
Coming Soon

<span style='font-size: 11pt'><span style='font-family: Impact'>Weather Forecasts</span></span>
Coming Soon

<span style='font-size: 11pt'><span style='font-family: Impact'>Snow & Weather Forecasts</span></span>
Coming Soon
 
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Heinz

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skidown said:
Here is another complete beginners question...

Is English widely spoken in most restaurants and shops ?

It is in the larger international resorts. They are used to hosting people from many different places so there will be signs in a number of languages and many of the staff will be from out of town. The Swiss in particular are multlilingual with German, French, English and Italian common, so you be able to get on ok theree even in some snaller resorts.

Having some German and/or French is always handy though.
 
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Snorkler

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I didn't have much edge when I did the Face, it was almost bullet proof Ice, I jsut waited for it to clear below and almost straight lined it, just a semblence of turns.
 
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