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HOW TO AVOID LIFT QUEUES

It’s busy out on the slopes at the moment with the half-term break in full swing. Our friends at Maison Sport offer some advice on how to avoid the queues.

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If you are out in the mountains at the moment you will likely know what we mean.

The slopes are busy.

Here is La Rosiere in France this week.

La Rosiere, France

La Rosiere, France

So, what can be done?

Make a rough plan of where you would like to ski over the course of the day.

Most resorts have lifts that take you from one side of the resort to the other and are no doubt the busiest as this is the only route.

Avoid these during busy periods (mid-morning and after lunch).

Early bird 

Wake up early and take the first lift.

The slopes are always quietest first thing and lift queues are nowhere to be seen.

Timing

A late lunch is the other alternative.

By stopping for a coffee or hot chocolate in the morning this gives you the chance to ski for longer into the afternoon.

Skiing whilst everyone else is sitting down for lunch is a clever way to make use of the slopes, when the queues are less busy.

Be aware 

It may sound obvious, but keep your eyes open.

Sometimes it’s possible to see the lift in the distance, so take a look and check the queue.

If it’s larger than expected, change the plan and ski to another lift – if you can.

Twilight slide 

Skiing at the end of the day can sometimes be lonely, as people slowly migrate to après or the pub.

It is, however, the perfect time to rack up the miles on piste and the perfect opportunity to not queue for a lift, meaning more runs and quicker turnarounds!

Lift queues

Lift queues

And our advice at PlanetSKI?

Head to the smaller resorts where there are no crowds.

We are currently in the Aosta Valley in Italy and skiing some of the smaller and less well-known resorts.

Crevacol, Aosta Valley, Italy

Crevacol, Aosta Valley, Italy

Avoiding the crowds in the Aosta Valley

Here are the lifts and slopes of Crevacol in the half-term week:

Crevacol, Aosta Valley, Italy

Crevacol, Aosta Valley, Italy

Crevacol, Aosta Valley, Italy

Crevacol, Aosta Valley, Italy

Crevacol, Aosta Valley, Italy

Crevacol, Aosta Valley, Italy

Avoiding the crowds in the Aosta Valley: next stop Torgnon

UPDATED

And there has been some reaction and advice from our readers over on the PlanetSKI Facebook page:

Anita Smit Go early, try to gauge where crowds are moving to, and then go the opposite direction…

Stuart Marlow Avoid France with strikes and school holiday chaos

Marcus Cooper Get out at 8am sharp !! Or go at lunchtime. Went to have a look at Kaprun last week for the day – took till midday to get on a slope. Horrendous.

Peter Lewis In the “old days” on Cairngorm we would start on first lifts, coffee break at 10.30/11am, ski through lunchtime, another break at 2.30/3pm then ski ’til lifts closed. Try to avoid peak times.

Nick Bowman Avoid school holidays, head to lesser known resorts

Sandy Thiecke Always take the outside line ?

Antonia Simpson Avoid half term and avoid the big resorts!

David Letts Earn your turns……

Richard Moss Go in March

John Shurmer Go in January

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