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Glacier Skiing in Val d’Isère

Part of the Val d’Isère & Tignes ski area, formally known as the Espace Killy visitors to Val d’Isère have access to the two glaciers in the region, La Grande Motte and Pissaillas, with a full ski pass. The highest parts of any ski resort, taking a chair lift or gondola to the top of either is well worth it for the views alone. The sheer height of the glaciers ensures that there is skiable snow present on both glaciers all year round. The runs on both glaciers are mainly at an intermediate level however Pissaillas has some blue runs whereas La Grande Motte has only reds.

Ski above the clouds on La Grande Motte Glacier

Sitting at 3,655 meters above sea level, La Grande Motte Glacier is the highest point in the Val d’Isère & Tignes mountain range. To reach the glacier from Val d’Isère skiers need to make their way west to the village of Val Claret which is part of Tignes. Once there, the quickest way to get to the top of Grande Motte is via the Funiculaire. This will take you to the bottom of the cable car which will then take you on to the top of the Glacier.

Best appreciated on a clear day, the views from the top of La Grande Motte are some of the best in the whole of the Alps. An intermediate skier or snowboarder’s playground, skiing along the wide red runs of La Grande Motte Glacier above the rest of the resort is a liberating feeling. If you want to test your off-piste abilities, there is the opportunity to do so with fresh powder around the North facing side of the glacier as well as steep donwhill runs.

Take in the stunning views from Pissaillas Glacier

On the Val d’Isère side of the combined ski area you will find the Pissaillas Glacier. Perched above the resort at a height of 3,488 meters, beneath the summit of the Pointe du Montet, the Pissaillas Glacier offers skiers and snowboarders a mixture of beginner blues and intermediate red runs. The closer of the two glaciers to Val d’Isère, the quickest way to reach the glacier from the town is to make your way to Le Fornet to the west of Val d’Isère. From there it is possible to take a mixture of chair lifts and cable cars directly to the top of the Pissaillas glacier.

Similarly to La Grande Motte, Pissaillas is best appreciated on a clear day. When the weather is poor it is unlikely that either of the glaciers around Val d’Isère will be open. Off-piste skiers can have the opportunity to head off half way down the Moraine run where from there you will encounter a long stretch and enjoy the fresh powder. It is always advisable to stay near the cable cars in this area for safety reasons.

For more information about the Val d’Isère and the area, visit our tourist information page.

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