14:50,
Monday,
27 May 2019.

Chatel, Skiing & Snowboar...

Super Chatel is just one small section of the bi-national Portes du Soleil ski domain. It is one of the largest in Europe, boasting an impressive 650 kilometers of marked pistes. The majority of these are linked by lift although some require a short hop by road. It covers fourteen villages in total; eight French, including Avoriaz, Morzine, Montriond, Les Gets, St Jean d’Aulps, Abondance and La Chapelle, and six Swiss; Champéry, Torgon, Morgins, Les Crosets Val d’Illiez and Champoussin.

Although lower in altitude than many of its competitors, Portes du Soleil has an admirable snow record with the average season running from mid December to mid April.

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Beginner

ski rating

Each sector of Chatel has its own beginner’s slopes. In Super Chatel these are accessed from the top of the Super Chatel Telecabine. In Vilapeyron and Pre La Joux of the Linga sector they are accessed directly from the village. Each sector by itself would prove limited for the progressing beginner so be prepared to move between Super Chatel and Linga from day to day. The free and frequent bus service makes this relatively easy and painless.

Intermediate

ski rating

Intermediates who seek adventure will really enjoy this area. A Bond-esque decent from Portes de Culet through pine forests dotted with rustic wooden byres leads you across the French Swiss border and down to the sleepy Swiss village of Morgins. From here cross the road and travel on through Switzerland passing by three other Swiss villages before you finally arrive on the long ridge overlooking the French resort Avoriaz. Ride on down into Avoriaz then take a couple of lifts up to Cretes des Rochassons from where you can choose any one of several reds leading back to Pre La Joux in Chatel. Mission complete Monsieur Bond. This is just one such journey that can be undertaken in this area. If you move fast it’s possible to make it all the way to, and back from – in one day – the French village of Les Gets which is located at the opposite end of the linked system.

Advanced

ski rating

The slopes of Chatel are not hugely challenging although after a fresh snowfall there are some pleasant off-piste routes through the trees. The black graded Le Corbeau is very short, always well pisted and pretty quiet so is absolutely fantastic for practicing Super G turns. Advanced riders will find Les Haut Fort above Avoriaz has much more to offer in the way of steeps, bumps and off-piste. Mogul fiends will freak at the Wall, reputed by some to be the toughest bump run in Europe.

Freestyle, Skier and BoarderCross

ski rating

Freestylers have a 120 meter halfpipe, 4 green jumps, 3 red jumps including 1 "Step up", 2 black jumps, 8 handrails (1flat 4 meter, 1 flat 6 meter, 1 rise/flat/descent, 1 kink, 2 C, 1 S and 1 camel). Whatever! There is also an 800 meter boardercross track possibly one of the longest in the Alps by the Barbossine chair.