Club Holiday Sauze d'Oulx, January 2014

Reporter: Dave Garnett

This was my first trip to the Via Lattea the (Milky Way) ski area. We took off from Manchester in pouring rain just after 6:00am and landed in Turin to more pouring rain. On arrival at Sauze there was very dense cloud shrouding the town. I was wondering if we were in for in for a week of bad conditions. There was a dump of snow on Sunday night.

By Monday morning the cloud had lifted with the sun trying to break through. My initial plan was to explore the runs in the Sauze area, however I soon found out that this area is in shade in the morning so I took the lift to Mount Fraiteve (with its distinctive radio masts) and found the valley in front was in sunshine. From here I went down to the Sansicario area and explored the runs there. The fresh snow made for wonderful skiing conditions. By 2:00pm I could see that cloud was building up around Mount Fraiteve and I thought it wise to start heading back to Sauze. I arrived back at Mount Fraiteve when it was in thick cloud and visibility down to less than 100 metres. I followed the black run 25 down, only just being able to see from one marker post to the next. Although it’s quite a steep run, it is wide and had very few people on it, so I took my time to get down it. Back on the Sauze side the cloud had lifted and the area was now in sunshine. I spent the rest of the day exploring the runs there. The fresh snow was a delight and the red runs were all very quiet.
A very enjoyable day!

On Tuesday I went in a group with the Nielson rep on a return visit to the Sansicario area.
A day of brilliant sunshine but with the runs no longer in the pristine condition of the day before.

On Wednesday I went over to Claviere by way of the bubble from Sansicario to Cesana. This area was much quieter than the places I’d visited on the previous two days. More wonderful runs in good condition.

Thursday found me with the Nielson group going to Sestriere. I thought that the buildings there were very unattractive. Not a place where I would choose to base myself if I was to come to this area again.

Up early on Friday to take the coach across the border to Montgenevre. Snowing all the way there and with cloud cover when we arrived. The cloud remained until the completion of the first run. The sun broke through but there were very cold winds in the higher areas. Some lovely runs there.

Saturday saw lots of local weekend skiers out. Lifts in the Sauze and Sansicario areas had long queues. I decided to re visit the Claviere area where it was a lot quieter. Another good day with clear skies.

All in all the week was very good and nice area to ski in.