Reporter: Janet Allen
I’m not sure who thought of this resort for a 4th SCoM ski holiday (I think the off- piste boys had something to do with it) but I signed up as I haven’t done much skiing in Italy.
We had a painless flight to Turin and a quick transfer to our hotel. There were a few teething troubles with the water boilers but the hotel was lovely. There were lots of hand painted designs on the walls (even in the lift), a cosy large lounge area and fair sized rooms. We also had a sauna, steam room and Jacuzzi for the easing of tired muscles. The food was the usual good standard chalet hotel fare and the wine went down well!
Ski Total had a ski locker across from the Champoluc bubble so we didn’t have to carry our gear home each night.
We had a welcome meeting from Teodora, our Bulgarian rep. who looked after us all week.
The Monterosa ski area is three linked valleys (Champoluc, Gressoney and Alagna all part of the Aosta valley) but the best access is from Gressoney as there is a choice of runs from both sides here.
Sunday morning we lined up with the Italian population to get on the bubble then queued for the next bubble and a chairlift to the first run down the valley.
After negotiating “lemmings leap” and the attendant fallers we got to a 2 man 2 directional chair. After this we actually got some lovely red runs into Gressoney. The queues home were just as long. The off- pisters got to Indren and skied the off- piste itinerary beside the glacier (they returned here often during the week as the off- piste conditions were limited due to lack of snow.) 1.5 metres of snow fell after we got home- drat.
The rest of the week the lifts and runs were much quieter so no queuing.
On Tuesday a lot of the group headed for Pila and had a good day skiing there. I’d skied here before on a day trip form Courmayeur. I skied the Antagnod area down the valley but the snow and runs were poor so returned to Champoluc for the afternoon.
One thing we did find compared to French resorts was the price of drinks and meals. I never paid more than 1.5 euro for a coffee (even on top of the mountain) and the local delicacy of Valdostana soup (stock soaked up with bread and lots of cheese toasted on top) was a cheap lunch.
Not being an off-piste skier I was quite happy with the groomed runs although it took a long time to get to some of them. I’m sure the resort would be better with more snow for the off-pisters.