The days are getting shorter, the cold is settling and already the snow is pointing the tip of his nose. We would not go skiing in the Pyrenees ? Yes, but ... which resort has the most snow ? Before answering this question, here are some criteria to better predict the snow conditions of the resorts . Of course altitude is the most important criterion, but it is not the only one to take into account. It is also necessary to observe the wind, the exposure, and the nature of the terrain (rocky or earthy). Attention also to microclimates that can vary the snow from one station to another. But since you are probably not a geologist, we have prepared a short guide to the best resorts in the Pyrenees .
Photo opening © Rainer-bleek / unsplash
Located in the Hautes-Pyrénées , on the slopes of the famous Pic du Midi de Bigorre s (link to the article when it will be written), which culminates at an altitude of 2,876 meters, the resort of Grand Tourmalet can boast of have the largest ski area in the French Pyrenees from 1400 to 2500 meters. Here, two villages, two atmospheres: Barèges the authentic , and La Mongie , more modern , offer two in one holidays to their 600 000 visitors a year. The Grand Tourmalet is also the temple of freeride , as well as cross-country skiing , with more than 50 kilometers of track dedicated to this discipline! Price side, count 45 € for a day pass , and 249 € the week.
Also popular with French people, the resort of Saint-Lary-Soulan offers nearly 100 kilometers of slopes between 1,700 to 2,515 meters above sea level , in the heart of the breathtaking landscapes of the Hautes-Pyrénées . The estate is divided into 3 levels: Saint-Lary 1700 (Pla d'Adet), Saint-Lary 1900 (Espiaube) and Saint-Lary 2400 (Vallon du Portet) . This station is also very committed in the field of ecology , it has also obtained the Quality Environment label for its efforts!
© Andrea-windolph / unsplash
In addition to being the highest resort in the Pyrenees (2,600 meters at its summit), Piau Engaly has a natural snow cover thanks to its geographical location putting it away from the wind and the redoux. In the heart of the department of Hautes-Pyrénées , this station offers a day pass at 38 €.
Straddling the departments of Hautes-Pyrénées and Haute-Garonne , the Peyragudes resort offers 60 kilometers of slopes on an area located between 1,610 and 2,261 meters above sea level , spread over two slopes : Agudes and Peyresourde . Good news: most of its tracks are practicable from the beginner level ! Another undeniable asset of the resort: it offers ultra modern equipment and ski lifts among the fastest! On the tariff side, the resort offers a day pass for € 41.50.
Ax 3 Domaines , in Ariège , covers three areas : Bonascre , from 1400 to 2000 meters above sea level , Le Saquet from 1800 to 2300 meters above sea level , and Les Campels , from 1500 to 2400 meters above sea level , conferring at the resort a large snow-covered playground all season long , accessible at a price of 38 € 50 a day!
Late in the season, go in Cauterets, including 60% of the ski area is above 2000 meters above sea level, and where there are many avenues oriented north face! Who said we could not ski in the spring ? Also enjoy the thermal waters of the charming village and its Nordic activities ( cross-country skiing , snowshoeing or sledding ...). 38 € the day pass .
Only 1h30 from Toulouse , in the department of Haute-Garonne , the station Luchon-Superbagnères is less known to the general public, so quieter ! Sliding down the slopes without slaloming between other skiers , here is still possible, and all this at a very low price : 35,50 € the day pass !
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Article written by Léa Dürr for the Guide Toulouse Pyrénées