Off-piste Skiing around Sainte Foy Tarentaise
Adventure, powder, spring touring, heliskiing – an inexhaustable bucket list
You’ve probably heard some of the comments about Sainte Foy’s Off-piste skiing – ‘Secret stash’, ‘Acres of powder’, ‘A haven for Ski Guides’, ‘Great conditions days after the bigger resorts are tracked out’……….
Yes, this gem of an off-piste area is remarkable; but why?
Abundant Tree Skiing with steep or gentle terrain; fantastic when it’s snowing, or on bad weather days.
Substantial and mainly protected North West facing bowl, whilst higher and more open resorts are much more exposed.
The ski area enjoys a ‘see all’ view and the snow stays good days after a snowfall, holding a lovely chalky feel long after the powder has gone.
A large variety of routes over the backside of the resort, to north and south, covering an astounding area for all abilities. There’s opportunities for those just starting out in the powder or touring, to those glory seekers thirsty for the steep and gnarly.
A wide variety of day tours for those willing to earn their turns by putting on the skins.
Heliskiing options. This does mean starting in La Rosiere (because heliskiing in France is illegal), but to be able to ski over 2000m in one run of vertical into the backside of Sainte Foy is very special.
like a kid on Christmas morning….
A few of the favourite off-piste routes around Sainte Foy
We very strongly recommend that you are suitably equipped and take a Guide for these routes and never just follow tracks or go alone.
Sainte Foy offers great ‘introduction to off-piste terrain’, perfect for those intermediate and advanced skiers wishing to progress and this route ticks all those boxes. Viewed and accessed from the top of the Aiguille lift, it flows down the backside (south) of the Sainte Foy bowl. A favourite choice of Guides for ‘introduction to off-piste’ as it’s not steep and there’s no hidden surprises.
A very pretty route that ultimately leads back into the Plan Bois green run of the resort.
Take a short hike up and over to the next valley from the track above Le Monal to find a wide number of off-piste lines that all eventually lead to Les Pigettes, a small hamlet higher up the Isère valley than Sainte Foy, on the road up to Val d’Isère and Tignes.
These slopes are south facing so careful timing is needed for the conditions to be perfect.
Get in touch with our in resort Concierge office to book a Première Neige local pick-up to get you back to the resort.
Offering 1500m of vertical, this is the most renowned off-piste route. It is not for the faint hearted or the inexperienced as it involves a 50 to 60 minute walk to the top at a height of 2930m, either bootlegging up the ridge from the top Aiguille lift, or heading up on skins.
There are several entrances to the north facing Fogliettaz bowl all of which can be very steep. The route will end up at the hamlet of Le Crot, from which there is a road (open to cars in the summer) that arrives at Le Miroir.
Bus services are limited from Le Miroir back to the resort, so it is well worth booking a Première Neige local pick-up, which you can organise with the Concierge Team.
This route, for those in the know or who have a Guide, is accessed straight off the top of the Marquise lift. It runs on the eastern side of the bowl and into the next valley, arriving at the same spot as the Fogliettaz route. It may have less of a descent but it means no bootlegging or skinning and provides a great half day adventure.
A local bus or transfer back to the resort which you can book through our Concierge team will be required.
January is generally colder with good snowfalls and thus is good month for this lower altitude route.
Accessed through the trees at the bottom of the Marquise lift, one can then either cut out higher up and swing back to the nursery slopes of Sainte Foy, or if conditions are good, ski right down into the main village of Sainte Foy.
If you do ski down to the main Sainte Foy village there are buses that come back up to resort.
If conditions are right and you are prepared to splash some cash, this offers a lifetime memory. Heliskiing in France is illegal, so you’ll need to depart from La Rosiere (Premiere Neige can transfer you there (book through our Concierge) and ski to the border with Italy. From there a helicopter to the top of the Le col de l’Argentière will leave you with over 2000m vertical descent back down to Le Miroir on the backside of Sainte Foy.