Confessions of a Ski Tripper Part 3
Part 3 of the blog series Confessions of a Ski Tripper is finally here (read part 1 here and part 2 here). Group Copeland went skiing with us in Val Thorens in January 2014 and decided to share their experience with the world, right here in our blog!
Back at the chalet, our designated chalet boy is on the case! Every night bar Wednesday he knocks out freshly made / cooked entrees followed by a three course meal for ten people. This is soooo good! Free wine (I didn’t say great wine), about the right amount of food, no washing up – it’s all been paid for so it feels like it’s free – marvellous. He also gets in early in the morning (regardless of when he went to bed – never late once!) to fry up your specific breakfast choice. You beauty! He also made all the beds and tidied up, did the bins etc. He’s a young lad and no Michelin Chef – sometimes mousse at altitude just refuses to fluff up, and sometimes the custard suffers a spinach-like decimal point error on the amount of sugar required but the pork say is fantastic and the sticky toffee pud is an absolute triumph!! All food, good and bad was greeted with friendly heckling and more often than not he ate with us.
Food aside, the chalet boy and indeed his colleagues from other chalets, were very attentive, knowledgeable and always helpful – they knew the resort and slopes inside out, as did the chalet manager. They were young and game and added value to the holiday in no uncertain terms.
OK, Monday morning and why are we here – to ski! Ski school for those who wanted it and the rest were off to explore the slopes. As in any first time resort it takes a few days to orientate yourself so the maps and apps are out in force. The snow is good, the light’s not bad and the lifts provide a myriad of opportunities. Everyone is excited and has a good first day. At night it snows quite heavily and day 2 is a different kettle of fish! Poor techniques are soon found out and the day is pleasant but tricky until the fresh stuff gets smoothed down a bit but the planets align for day three.
Fresh snow, piste bashed, and not a cloud in the sky- the blue skiers stay in Val Thorens but the red skiers know that today is the day to go “over the top” and ski first to Meribel then up and over again to Courchevel. Unfortunately everyone has the same idea but by the first car lift to the Val Thorens / Meribel peak, there are no queues of note. The head cameras are out, the camera’s on sticks are out, the i-phone video functions are out – it’s a day of glorious skiing and more footage than a centipede on a treadmill! The reds into Meribel and then Courchevel are fantastic. The sun is out, the views are stunning and life is better than good.
Until you dare to stop at a café in Courchevel……… 4 drinks and 28 Euros later you’re checking on google and seeing that yes, Courchevel is the most expensive resort in Europe. Fortunately we skipped lunch, powered solely by chocolate infused with lime and chilli. It’s a beautiful place though so we tick the box and head off, racing the sun, getting back to Val Thorens and La Folie Douce in time for some Dumph Dumph DJ-ing, accompanied by some quality singing and some dude blowing hot on sax. Whilst not a Dumph Dumph man myself, when you are sat in the middle off the drinking plaza with a cold beer, looking up at the performance balcony, with the heavy bass pleasantly vibrating your salopettes, it is quite intoxicating!
It’s also quite cold once you stop moving.
Never mind – off down the hill to the almost “ski in ski out” chalet for more hearty nosh from the youngster – cue Lou Reed, “It’s such a perfect day” but forget the heroine overtones, it HAS been a perfect day. (I say almost ski in ski out – it’s about 30 yards short so it’s being unnecessarily picky to point this out. Let’s pretend I didn’t)