The Ski Area
Morzine is situated in an area called the Portes Du Soleil (Doors to the Sun) This is a pretty apt name, as the sun shines quite a lot here and temperatures are never really lower than -10 in Jan and can get up to 6°C in March/April. The scenery is visually stunning as you have the omni-present Mont Blanc in the far distance, ringed by the mountains leading over to Switzerland. From the 3 highest peaks of Nyon, Chamoissiere and Ranfolly, you can gawp for ages at the majesty of the Alps.
Morzine/Les Gets benefits from many tree lined runs, so when it is cold you can shelter a bit! They are also very pretty to ski through, you feel quite connected to nature! Up in Avoriaz and into Switzerland you are much more closely connected with the sheer rock faces and steep mountainous inclines. An excellent cross section.
Skiing in Morzine
Morzine itself, the part accessed by the “Pleney” bubble and gondola – starts from the lift station and either continues over the golf course and into Les Gets, veers off and down an epic “shushty” piste into the Nyon/Chamoissierre area or covers the area you’ve just come up over in the bubble lift.
*Shushty – bend your knees, tuck your skis under your arm and go as fast as humanely possible
The Nyon/Chamossierre area benefits from two of the highest peaks in the area and two epic black runs, as well as about 10 great red runs and a load of really cruisey blues. The snow is generally consistent right through the season and although plenty people kicking around, you can take it a little higher and avoid any crowds. If you continue on past Pointe De Nyon, a great mountainside restaurant next to a mini jump park, you can ski all the way back to the main road in Morzine 90% of the season.
The runs around the Pleney area are two extremes – either you go down the extremely long and curvy Piste B – dodging adult and toddler ski school groups, being overtaken by older kids in ski school and everyone else blue run standard or too tired OR you ski down the red which takes you into the Stade Du Slalom. The last wee bit is pretty steep but it’s a fantastic run and if you are not too tired at the end of the day – the quickest and quietest way down. Otherwise it’s Piste B. It’s actually a fantastic piste with loads of interesting things to see – some nice steep bits and a few “pole-tucking” moments. As you appear out of the forest you are greeted with a panoramic view of Morzine.
The run down over into Les Gets is speedy and good for getting you going in the morning. Once you pop out of the tree line you are faced with aiming for the tunnel down a wee steep bit but try not to stop after it – the speed you accumulate coming down will benefit you in the downwards descent into Les Gets. This is also the way to Mont Chery and I always take groups there on the first day – it’s an excellent way of determining ability and there are a number of points along the way where people can easily bail if they are struggling to keep up. It’s unlikely mind you – anyone capable of a blue would be capable of the trip to Mont Chery and back – if not you are better in lessons until you are confident enough. It gives the better skiers a good leg stretch on the first day and they can spend hours on Mont Chery enjoying the beautiful and quiet red and black pistes.