Home to some of the best snowboarding resorts in the world, picking out five of France’s finest is no easy feat. If you’ve not yet been snowboarding to France, I guarantee at some time you will!
It’s a country that boasts a plethora of perfect pistes, super snowparks and outstanding off-piste terrain; an excursion to this part of the European Alps is unlikely to disappoint.
But amongst these many gems, there’s a handful that sparkle a little brighter than the rest. We take a look at five of France’s very best resorts for snowboarders, examining each for their unique appeal.
It was the first time I had actually seen myself ski but I didn’t look as good as I’d imagined, despite having notched up almost ten years on the slopes.
Watching myself sliding and flexing in front of the huge mirror, I could see that my upper body was moving around far too much, and that I was leaning over my uphill ski as I travelled across the ‘piste’, rather than keeping my core upright and balanced.
Before long, these glitches in my technique unbalanced my skis and I fell onto the white carpet with a clatter of metal.
My Skiplex experience had begun!
Women are raising the bar in the world of freeriding. They’re skiing bigger mountains, taking greater risks and proving that female freeskiers are a force to contend with.
World tours have provided the ultimate arena for fearless females to test themselves against the best skiers on the planet, and this year the competition reached fever point with female freeriders better represented and receiving more coverage than ever before.
This year, three world tours – the Swatch Freeride World Tour, Freeskiing World Tour and The North Face Masters of Snowboarding combined, bringing together the world’s best talent on the snow in one event.
Canada has some of the finest skiing on the planet. But the best places to ski in Canada are those that are near to, or have their own thermal springs. It’s pure après-ski hot tub heaven!
The country is home to more than 50 hot spring sites, where visitors can bathe in natural thermal pools and feel the soothing benefits of warm mineral waters on their muscles.
This is hugely popular after a day of thigh-burning hiking or mountain biking in Cascade Mountains, punishing ski-descents in the Rockies, or a day of kayaking Canada’s white waters.
But where can you find these hot tub hot spots?
Extending along the western length of the South Island and dividing the landmass in two, the Southern Alps – or Ngā Pukemāeroero in Maori – is the country’s longest and highest mountain range. Adventure holidays here encompass everything life in New Zealand offers.
Crammed with awe-inspiring peaks, ice-blue glaciers, verdant rainforests, volcanic lakes and sparkling rivers, this is a true outdoor enthusiast’s paradise, and comes loaded with National Parks, ski resorts, welcoming towns and outdoor activity hubs that place an excess of adventurous opportunities right at your fingertips.
Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Sinking happy hour pints in the pub, refuelling on alpine fodder at home, or soaking your tootsies in a steaming tub: however you like to spend your après time, get yourself geared up with this season’s best ski films.
But, you’d be foolish to just stick to the latest releases; we’ve included a stack of timeless classics, you can kick back to.
Here are the best ski movies to watch in your après time:
On-piste safety can be controlled, to an extent, in ski resorts: graded runs lead to a natural sorting of ski abilities; first-timers can stick to the nursery slopes; avalanche threats can be monitored; and rescue or assistance is available on-hand.
But once you venture off-piste, you enter unregulated territory, where potential risk increases dramatically and you’re expected to take full responsibility for your own safety.
Are all backcountry skiers aware of the risks they place themselves and others under? What measures to they take to ski responsibly? And should we restrict those who aren’t properly equipped?
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