Chatel Skiing Review
Chatel is one of the 14 linked ski resorts that make up the Portes du Soleil ski domain, one of the biggest in Europe.
The Chatel ski area itself has 2 separate parts, Super-Chatel & Pre-La-Joux.
Most people head down to Pre-La-Joux at the start of the day because this area is directly linked to the rest of the PDS, and it is also one of the most popular areas in the PDS. It boasts fast lifts, great variety of runs in a small area, loads of off piste and lots of good restaurants.
It’s just short of a 10 minute drive from the village, either on the free Chatel buses or if staying in a catered chalet you’ll be ferried in back and forth in their minibus. All of the runs are here are covered by snow cannons to ensure plenty of the white stuff, even when nature doesn’t provide.
The Super-Chatel area is accessed from a Gondola in the centre of the village, which drops you in a natural bowl area with a variety of beginner runs. Many of the lift in this area are drag lifts, away from the top of the Gondola it’s generally pretty quiet and in good conditions can be a great day out.
Avoriaz is the next area across and is the centre of the PDS, again lots of runs / fast lifts / snow parks / restaurants and not forgetting plenty off piste. Boasting good snow conditions throughout the season it’s always a popular area and somewhere you’ll pass through most days.
Morzine / Les Gets are next areas, with plenty of runs for beginner to intermediate. Many different options to choose to suit everyone, from here you get the best views in the PDS of the majestic Mont Blanc in the distance.
Over in the Swiss side of the PDS there are the resorts of Les Crosets / Champéry / Champoussin / Morgins, with scores of south facing sunny open slopes and generally not as busy as the French side. Many of the lifts are older although Les Crosets has invested recently in two new high speed lifts making itself the hub of activity in the area, they always create a superb snowpark too.
From Chatel you can ski “The Loop” by starting at Pre-La-Joux then heading to Avoriaz before dropping over its Switzerland, the adventurous can ski “The Swiss Wall” (a very steep black mogul run). Continuing through the resorts to Morgins allows you to cross the road and take the lift up to the top of Super-Chatel and back down into Chatel. A full day out without having to take the same lift or piste twice.