TOP RESORTS FOR SPRING SNOW
Craving some late-season snow but don't know where to get your fix? We've got your back. Whether you're seeking stunning views and picturesque sunsets, some quality late season backcountry turns, world-class freestyle parks or a little bit of everything, these are the resorts we’ll be hitting this spring.
Val Thorens, France
Sitting 2,300m above sea level and with lifts taking you to 3,000m in five separate ski areas, you can be sure of snow in Europe’s highest ski village. And, with most slopes facing north, they’re up to 10° colder, so hold onto the snow when the rest of The Three Valleys is turning to slush.
The perfect resort for meeting friends, the flat-bottomed mountain bowl offers skiing for all abilities. The wide gentle slopes will keep beginners in your group busy while intermediates get a choice of red runs, and leaving you free to take on some of the resorts more challenging runs like the Glaciers of Peclet and Chavière, the world-class mogul-bashing on the long, steep Cîme de Caron black run, and the infamous Couloirs of Courchevel.
Off the slopes, Val Thorens is renowned for its buzzing après scene, so you can hit the bars at the end of a day’s skiing.
Fonna Glacier, Norway
Seeking summer in Winterland? Then Fonna Glacier in Norway is sure to impress. Home of some of the most picturesque skiing and snowboarding in the world, Fonna glacier is one of Europe’s foremost summer snow resorts. Situated in the heart of Hardanger, Norway, the short (or sometimes non-existent) daylight in winter means the resort is shut throughout the majority of the “regular” season, allowing for snow dumps to fall uninterrupted ready for their opening in Spring. In an ideal season, the lifts keep turning right through into September before shutting down in preparation for the next season.
If you haven’t heard of Fonna, you’ll have seen it before. The resort and its stunning summer sunsets featured heavily in the films Golden Hour and the closing segment of the seminal 2013 film Supervention. Fonna features an iconic golden hue in the afternoon juxtaposed with the phenomenal crystal blue lakes that form all around.
Featuring mellow slopes, a superbly-maintained freestyle park, ski racing facilities and pond-skimming in glacial lakes, there is something for all the family.
The resort is two and a half hours from Bergen airport, but trust us, the trip is well worth it.
Obergurgl is one of Austria’s most snow-sure resorts. Sitting at the upper end of Austria’s Ötztal Valley it’s lift-linked with Hochgurgl and sits over 2,000m above sea level so offers endless opportunities.
Obergurgl might not be known for its wild party atmosphere, but it more than makes up for it with its exceptional skiing and friendly traditional atmosphere which means many people come back year after year.
Although Obergurgl is primarily an intermediates paradise there’s plenty for the more advanced skiers from Mut, one of the Tyrol's biggest bump runs to Königstal on the Hochgurgl side for excellent off-piste.
Absolut Park, (Shuttleberg) Austria
Freestyle nuts: Absolut Park is the place for you. One of the most famous park locations in Europe, Absolut is divided up into seven areas which drill into each discipline of freestyle riding, extending over 1.5km and equipped with over 100 features for their park runs. The professional shaping team work year-round to keep a lot of the park open, although some areas shut over the summer.
Absolut also features “The Stash”, a project originally started by the late, great Jake Burton and all-round snowboard legend Craig Kelly. There are only 6 of these hidden “stash” parks in the world, with American artist Bob King being commissioned for the hand-carved features and obstacles. The Stash is built in the summer, with wooden features and obstacles set down in the warm weather to be supplemented by the natural snowfall. The result is a unique combination of natural powder riding and freestyle creativity.
Just 45 minutes from Salzburg it’s a great place to head for a weekend and perfect your park skills.
Leave Europe behind and discover the wilderness of backcountry in Canada. With one of the longest ski seasons in North America and genuine champagne powder, Banff is the perfect place to head.
The resort consists of three ski villages; Lake Louise, Sunshine Village and Mt. Norquay giving you 8,000 acres of skiable terrain right from your doorstep, all accessed via a tri-area lift ticket. For seasoned skiers and riders, there are chutes, bowls, steeps and terrain parks to max your skills, while beginners can get their thrills on the miles of green and blue runs.
With skiing right through to May, Banff offers milder temperatures and longer nights so you can power through the days and make the most of your time on the slopes. And, off the slopes, events run right through until May.
Calgary is the closest airport, with a transfer time of around an hour and a half.
Located in Yamagata on Japan’s main island Honshu, Gassan is the resort to visit if you’re seeking serious snowsports adventure, since the entire resort is a backcountry field. With moguls and over 1000m vertical terrain it’s best suited to experienced skiers or riders looking to hone their skills and push their limits.
Gassan gets so much snow through winter that it doesn’t open until April, with lifts running right until late July, so you can be sure of snow in late spring.
The resort centres on the skiing so although there’s plenty of chance to sample some traditional Japanese cuisine, you won’t find the same après as many European resorts.
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