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Off Piste Skiing from Les Grands Montets

Skiing from Grand Montets

Despite the fire in early Autumn 2018, Les Grands Montets will still be open and it can be accessed via Plan Joran gondola, then from Le Bochard and La Herse lifts. Read here about 2018-2019 - Hardcore Heaven.

La Face is the descent down the glacier west of the top cable car. The initial section is steep and crevassed. It can be intimidating. The glacier soon opens out to the very wide Dome.

Ski hard left to meet the area served by the Bochard lift. Central to the top of La Herse or hug the rocks to the right down the Combe des Rachasses. This is quite sheltered and will often give good snow in windy conditions. It leads to the Italian Bowl.

Glacier des Rognons

This north-facing area offers some fantastic off-piste skiing down long steep descents from the "Combe du Cordier" on the far right-hand side to the steep "Grand Mur" (Big Wall) on the left-hand side of the glacier.

The skiing is technically difficult with crevasse and avalanche danger and many of the routes (especially on the right-hand side) threatened by serac falls.

The Bochard and the Herse

This vast sector served by the 2 cable cars of the same name, offers several possibilities of fantastic descents although the top zone is on a glacier and there is always a risk of avalanche after a new snowfall.

All the sector gets quickly tracked but as the skiing area is immense, one can always find a new powder track to ski and progress each time a little more.

The cable car of Bochard gives access, on the left of the ski domain, to the comb of La Pendant (Lavancher), a vast comb usually little attended that one can go down 1000 vertical meters. To turn over towards Lognan, one travels by the chairlift of the Retour Pendant.

One can also continue the descent by a way which crosses the forest to the village of Lavancher (in all 1600 vertical meters).

Pas de Chevre

This fantastic off-piste run goes from the top of the Grands Montets down to meet the Mer de Glace and then with good snow conditions you can ski down to Chamonix, a vertical descent of 2300 metres!

The route descends west from the top lift station and then there is a choice for four couloirs. The following lists them looking down from right to left.

  1. Pas de Chevre
  2. Central Couloir - these both have slopes of around 30 degrees but have some narrow and often rocky areas in the middle where a slip or fall can be very serious.
  3. Rectiligne 
  4. Couloir du Dru - these are long narrow and steep couloirs, the snow conditions can be very icy and skiers can't afford to fall at any point during the descent.

All of these descents require good snow conditions and there is avalanche danger and complex route finding, especially on the lower slopes below the couloirs. However, in good conditions, they provide a wonderful way to finish a day of skiing on the Grands Montets.