Advanced & Off-Piste

Advanced skiers should try the Hauts Forts black runs down to Les Prodains and the Swiss Wall – one of the steepest and bumpiest runs in Europe – then head Off-Piste, exploring all the Portes du Soleil has to offer.

Advanced skiers benefit from the size of the area as there’s great red and black skiing in every corner of the Portes du Soleil. Around Avoriaz head for the steeps of les Hauts Forts, where the bumps on Machon are steeper for a shorter distance than the infamous Wall. As well as the official runs look out for the off-piste. If you trverse across the Les Crozats de la Chaux, you can descend through the trees to Les Prodains. But be careful, it’s steep and there can be avalanches,

Then its time for the Swiss Wall itself, which is just over the border in Champery. It’s one of the steepest and bumpiest runs in Europe and deserving of multiple descents. It’s effectively a bowl with South East, East and North East facing parts so if you traverse at the top, you can get very different experiences from different routes. If the snow is good you can keep going off-piste, heading slightly to the right until you join the long Grand Paradis red run, which is very enjoyable in its own right.

If you enjoy bumps, the former drag lift track up from Les Lindarets is now a long bumps run with a near perfect gradient. Watch out though, as once you’re halfway down there’s no alternative but to continue.

Then its time for more off-piste. A guide can show you the descent fron the Fornet chairlift in Avoriaz to L’Erigne. It needs good snow though.

The Les Crosets ski area in Switzerland which is part of the Portes du Soleil  easily accesible from Avoriaz’s lifts, is basically one big semi-circular bowl, with plenty of between-the-pistes freeriding potential for advanced skiers if they both know what they are doing and can see what they are doing. There are some good steep couloirs but take care (or better still, take a guide) because there are rocks, cliffs and hidden gullies here as well. When it’s time to leave the area, there is a good, North-facing ungroomed route (sometimes shown on maps as a black piste) from Pointe de l’Au which joins the long blue from Col des Portes du Soleil, down to Morgins. 

Further afield, the Tete de Linga and Cornebois area in Pre la Joux (part of Chatel), the Pointe de Nyon  and Chamossiere in the Morzine sector, and the North face of Mont Chery on the far side of Les Gets , are all good fun, and you can get to them and back from Avoriaz within a day..


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