Ski Trip 2019
The sun is low in the sky and there is a chill in the air as I write and the office lights are switched on already, despite it only being 3pm. So in an attempt to focus on brighter days, I thought I would write about the next Friends and Families of Rosemead skiing trip, which will start on Friday, March 29th 2019, for a week in Crans Montana.
If you had to design a ski resort for a short, relaxing break, you would come up with Crans-Montana, it is highly civilised, rarely crowded and extremely friendly.
The resort is spread along a south-facing balcony halfway up the 3000m massif that soars above Sierre in the Swiss canton of Valais. With clear skies above and fresh snow – Crans-Montana takes some beating, the pistes are mostly gentle blues and reds, better suited to graceful cruising than thigh-burning descents, though there is plenty of variety. The mountains you bounce down with the midday sun full on your face are charmingly scenic, the mountains you gaze at – Zermatt’s Matterhorn just discernible among them – are mind-blowing.
The resort is actually two villages, Crans and Montana, which over time have effectively merged into one. Crans is the more upmarket – shops include Prada, Louis Vuitton, Bally and Montblanc – Montana is younger and livelier, especially later in the evening.
Why Crans Montana?
Crans-Montana is a well-tested and favourite resort for the trip. The ski area is almost entirely south-facing, with one of the best 360-degree panoramic views of the Alps, including Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn. It includes the Glacier Plaine Morte at 3,000m, down to village level at 1,500m. This is generally high enough to retain good snow conditions and cold enough for snow cannons to create artificial snow when needed.
The resort includes wide open runs, significant off-piste and scenic tree-lined routes from 2,000m down to the base stations. All in all, there is plenty to offer beginners and even the most experienced skiers. The ski area includes 140km of marked pistes (twice what is available in Arosa) and there is an impressive 50,000sq m snowpark with Boardercross, quarter-pipes, big-air and rails (for the very daring) at Aminona. There is also a bar and deckchairs in the middle of the snowpark (for the not-so-very daring).
Crans Montana also has one of Switzerland’s best toboggan runs, a 6km long descent from 2,400m down to 1,500m, 35km of cross-country skiing on the glacier and 18 mountain restaurants – we know this is an important requirement for Rosemead…
And for those left with some energy at the end of the day, the resort can also cater for the Rosemeadie who wishes to take advantage of its high-end shopping and plentiful bars. There is even a casino for those who care to take a flutter.
Rosemead will be staying once more at La Moubra, a mountain lodge which can cater easily for a big group such as ours. It has its own large restaurant, sauna, theatre and coffee bar. The bedrooms generally sleep 3-4 people comfortably. , although there are a few double rooms and a few rooms that are big enough to accommodate a family of 6. There are plenty of bathrooms but these are not en-suite.
Coach, Fly or Drive?
Many seasoned skiers choose to take the coach every year. It is cheap, there is a great sense of camaraderie and everything is done for you. It is especially convenient for those who have very young children (who might sleep all the way) and for those who have never done the journey before. Flying is without a doubt more comfortable option (certainly for the adults) and quicker, but it will be more costly and you will have to lug cumbersome bags around. Flyers should book their own tickets and fly to Geneva, from where it is an easy 2-3 hour train ride to the resort. Driving is also becoming a more popular option for those of you who like to be in charge of your own destiny. Car parking is available on request at the resort.
What’s included in the price?
The different permutations are endless and vary according to age and travel requirements but in essence the basic package covers half board, ski pass and evening activities and ranges from £340 to £745 for under 6s and from £640 to £925 for adults.
You will also need to include the cost of ski lessons (£145 for everybody over 6 but £350 for under 6s), your travel, insurance, ski equipment and a sandwich lunch. This trip remains extremely good value especially given the facilities available to us at La Moubra.
To know exactly how much it would cost you, please go to Ski Company – overview where all the information is available in a matrix.
So, all in all, there is plenty here to give you something to think about over the upcoming weeks!
The Ski Meeting
The ski meeting will take place in the Prep dining room on 13th March 2019 at 3:45pm (TBC).
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Ski Organiser: Sue Sawyer (0789 9060410 /[email protected])