Another French Resort Delays Opening Due to Lack of Snow

Val d’Isere has followed Val Thorens in announcing a delay to the start of the season. Warm weather is to blame, but there is snow in the forecast. UPDATED

Val d’Isere is the latest resort to announce a delay.

The resort was originally scheduled to open on Saturday November 26th, but given the weather conditions and the mild autumn it will now  take place a week later, on December 3rd.

The resort said the decision was taken “in order to offer the best experience to our customers during the winter season.”

It added  that it will be possible to ski in Val d’Isere until May 2023.

Neighbouring Tignes is still planning to open on November 26th, with a small pre-opening this Friday, November 18th.

There will be a lift running up on the glacier.

Val Thorens said that there is enough snow on the slopes at altitude, but not at resort level.

Val Thorens is situated at an altitude of 2,300m, and is normally the one of the first resorts in France to open.

Here is the current view from the top of the resort.

“Despite our best efforts to start the season with you on November 19, the warm autumn weather does not allow us to open the ski resort and its slopes in a qualitative way,” said a statement from Val Thorens.

“So, our teams, motivated and optimistic, have decided to push back the opening date.

“The snow cover on the tops is satisfactory but currently does not allow a return on skis to the village.

“The entire team is ready to prepare the ski area with the hope of opening on November 26th.”

PlanetSKI reporter Chris Moran will be reporting from Val Thorens when it opens on November 26th.

Anyone who had already bought lift passes or booked hotels for November 19th onwards is being offered a refund.

The warm weather in the Alps has also severely disrupted the opening of the alpine skiing World Cup season with seven out of eight races being called off.

There was a decent snowfall in many parts of the Alps 10 days ago. but much has melted.

The conditions at the glacier resorts, particularly in Austria, were improved by the snow.

In Austria, Obergurgl is set to open this weekend and PlanetSKI’s reporter, Katy Dartford, will be in the resort and reporting back.

Look out for her reports on the early season conditions.

There is some snow in the forecast according to the alpine weather expert Fraser Wilkin from weathertoski.co.uk.

“The general weather situation over the next few days is quite complicated, with a succession of weather fronts set to move in from the west which will struggle to make much progress eastwards, at least initially, with the Foehn “protecting” the Austrian Alps until Wednesday,” Fraser said on Monday.

“By next weekend, however, all Alpine regions should have seen at least some new snow at altitude.

“Indeed, many places will see multiple snowfalls, even if most will be minor, with totals above 2200m over the next 5 days or so in the order of 5-20cm, and perhaps 20-40cm in some favoured parts of the western Alps.

“The rain/snow limit will fluctuate between 1400m and 2300m.

“These kinds of quantities aren’t enough to get that excited about just yet, but it will give a nice top-up to both the glaciers and some soon to be opened non-glacial resorts, including Obergurgl which should offer good piste-skiing conditions once it opens on Thursday.

“There are some early indications that the Alps could see some heavier and more widespread snowfall next week, but this is still too far off to be certain.”

Les3Vallees has launched a new online travel agency for this winter.

See here for further details: Les 3 Vallées Travel

Les2Alpes is set to open on Saturday 3rd December.

The following weekend sees the start of the 8th music festival, the Rise Festival.

The organisers also run Ibiza Rocks, Wasteland Ski and Rough Hill.

The  festival combines a week of snowsports and mountain activities with 100% British concerts throughout the resort.

PlanetSKI will have a reporting team at the event so look out for our reports.

The line-up for this season includes Chase & Status, Patrick Topping, Sigma, Shy FX, Eats Everything, Sister Sledge and many more.

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