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Top 5 reasons we love spring skiing

clock 1st April 2015 | comment0 Comments

Skiing in March and April is our favourite time of the ski season. Days get longer and temperatures start to warm up so you can relish in the brilliant ski conditions in the morning then hit the bars in the afternoon and soak up après in the sun on a mountain top terrace.

End of season skiing is a popular option for skiers and snowboarders as there is more availability in favoured accommodations and families can enjoy a cheaper ski holiday in the Easter break compared to the high prices at Christmas and half term. Here are our top 5 reasons why we love spring skiing:

1. The Sunshine

There’s nothing better than carving up the mountain with the sun beating down on your back. You don’t have to cart around lots of layers, you can sunbathe in between ski runs and you’ll have that special code worn only by fellow skiers and boarders – a cracking goggle tan so that everyone knows you’ve just returned fresh from the slopes.

 

2. Longer Days

More sunshine = longer days = lifts are open longer = more time out in the snow! Do we need to say any more?

 

3. It’s cheaper

As the slopes get emptier, the prices get cheaper, meaning that a last minute ski holiday is a great way to save the pennies. You'll have a bigger choice of accommodation as chalets and ski in - ski out accommodation won't sell out quite so fast. If you’re looking to squeeze in your second holiday of the season without using up all of your budget, then now’s the time.

If you don't have the time to enjoy a full week on the slopes, there are a number of Weekend Ski Breaks available so you can squueze in that last ski adventure of the season.

Take a look at Last Minute Ski Deals

 

4. The slopes are empty

As the spring months draw nearer, the slopes become quieter and quieter. Airport transfers become much smoother and faster and there are much smaller queues for chairlifts, lunch stops and bars. You’ll have more time to enjoy the breathtaking mountain views, rather than rushing to be first on the lifts.

You'll find that there's much more space on the pistes and if you are lucky enough to enjoy a late season powder day, you’ll be able to ski more fresh laps.

Spring is also a great time to bring along the kids and those who are just learning so they can focus more on their riding and less on trying to dodge others!

 

5. End of season parties

Experience some top après as resort bars aim to drink dry the last of their stock, ready to close down for the summer. You’ll find plenty of closing celebrations at just about every resort with live music, BBQ’s and of course, snow – a perfect combination!

The end of season also brings along a lot of festivals, such as SnowbombingSnowboxx and Zermatt Unplugged.

 

Snowboxx festival at Folie Douce, Alpe d'Huez

 

View Ski Holidays in April | Ski Next Weekend | View Snow Reports



Iglu in the Mountains | March 2015

clock 9th March 2015 | comment0 Comments

The first week of March is a prime time for many of the Iglu team to head off on their ski holiday's. The half term crowds have disappeared, the chance of fresh snowfall is high and we get to enjoy the start of spring skiing conditions.

This is the time of year where we can go to our favourite resorts. A large group headed to the beautiful Austrian resort of Mayrhofen, while others were in Tignes, Val d’Isere, Zell am See and St Moritz. It was an amazing week for a ski holiday with fresh snow at the stars of the week then sunny skies for the second half. Everyone agreed it was a perfect week in the Alps. There is so much snow in the Alps, it is the perfect time for a last minute getaway!

Take a look at a selection of our favourite photos from the week:

Mayrhofen and Hintertux, Austria

Nick HH, Ned, Linda, Nick J and Krystelle enjoyed a week in Mayrhofen staying at the Chalet Stoanerhof. After a very snowy start to the week with more than a foot of fresh snow, the storms cleared up mid week so the team could enjoy the glorious sunshine and mountain bars.

 

Snowing down in the Village at the start of the week

Ned, Linda, Krystelle and Nick ready for their first day on the mountain

Ahorn, Mayrhofen

Penken, Mayrhofen

Krystelle and Ned enjoying the powder conditions at the start of the week

Hintertux glacier

Linda loving the views and snow up the glacier

View ski holidays in Mayrhofen

Tignes and Val d'Isere, France

Laura and Millie from the marketing team had an incrediable week in Espace Killy. It was a rocky start wiith high winds on day one, closing many of the lifts but after a foot of snow fell, the sun shone for the rest of the week.

Fresh snow in Tignes at the start of the week

Powder day for Millie in Tignes

Laura loving the breath taking views in Val d'Isere

View ski holidays in Tignes and Val d'Isere

Zell am See & Saalbach, Austria

Sam and Jason from the ski sales team spent a week in their favourite ski resort, Zell am See. As you can see they had an amzing week of powder days and apres sessions in the sun.

 

Power tree trails in Zell

A day trip out to Saalback

View ski holidays in Zell am See

St Moritz, Switzerland

Chris had a stunning week in the exclusive Swiss resort.

View ski holidays in St Moritz

 

View last minute ski deals

by Krystelle



Will it be a bumper end to the ski season?

clock 26th February 2015 | comment1 Comments

In the past few weeks snow conditions this season have completely turned around. It may have been a slow start to the ski season after the warm December temperatures, but since mid-January things have been looking up. There has been a series of huge snow dumps teamed with a string of sunny days occurring over the last few weeks, dramatically building up the snow bases of ski resorts across Europe.


February Snow

The February half term was a perfect week for a ski holiday with up to 60 cm of snowfall on the half term transfer weekend then beautiful blue skies for most of the week after. View current snow conditions in our latest snow reports.

As the busiest ski week of the season came to a close, it was reported in the long range forecasts that we were in for one of the biggest snow storms of the season over the next 9 days, including up to 231 cm of snowfall in just a few days. The Alps may not have received the 2m foreseen but 120 cm in Soldeu, 98 cm in Cervinia, 82 cm in Grindelwald and 66 cm in Avoriaz was very welcomed by the post-half term skiers and snowboarders.

Snow bases and snow conditions are currently superb for the start of March. Particularly Austrian resorts are looking significantly healthy for this time of year (compared to last year): 

Resort February 2014 February 2015
St Anton 53cm / 128 cm 59 cm / 221 cm
Solden 12 cm / 270 cm 15 cm / 317 cm
Obergurgl 79 cm / 177 cm 61 cm / 205 cm
Lech 100 cm / 115 cm 96 cm / 171 cm

Lower pistes cm / top pistes cm

March Skiing

Skiing in March is one of the most best times of the year, as temperatures start to warm up you can enjoy the fantastic ski conditions in the morning, then by the afternoon you can embrace the après atmosphere on a sun terrace on a mountain top bar. With the current great snow depths in many resorts across Europe, a ski holiday in March will be excellent.

With even more snow storms on the horizon over the next 9 days, there will be no shortage of snow for the rest of the season. The snow conditions we have at present are the best so far this season and with Easter week just 4 weeks away it’s looking like there will be plenty of snow to enjoy this year.

After Easter falling so late in April last year, this wasn’t a great time for a ski holiday. With Easter Sunday falling on the 5th April this year, many families will be heading out to ski resorts for the first week of April to spend the Easter holidays in the snow.

Top tips when booking an Easter ski holiday

With temperatures rising towards the end of the ski season, your save bet is to aim for high resorts. It is always difficult to predict the snow conditions at the end of season so be sure to choose a ski resort with high altitude to secure the best snow conditions. You want enough snow to build a snow bunny don’t you?

 

Best resorts for end of season skiing

  • With the Grande Motte Glacier in Espace Killy open through till May and the highest ski lift peaking at 3450m you can guarantee good snow in Tignes and Val d’Isere for Easter.
  • Val Thorens is the highest ski resort in Europe, as well as in the largest ski area in the world with over 600 km of piste in the 3 Valleys
  • Les Arc 2000 – the magic is in the name, as the village sits at 2000m, snow is still decent at this high altitude later on in the ski season and the ski area’s highest point is 3226m at the Aiguille Rouge.
  • If you prefer the Austrian side of the Alps, the Kitzsteinhorn glacier in Kaprun provides skiing or snowboarding almost all year round. Even if it is warm in the valley there will still be snow at 3000m on the glacier.
  •  

    View Last Minute Ski Offers and Easter Holiday Ski Deals



    Ski yourself fit this season

    clock 17th February 2015 | comment0 Comments

     

    If you’re looking to kill a few calories but are unwilling to sign your soul away for an unused year at your local jazzy gym, why not consider the outdoor life and some truly awesome winter sports to get in shape the fun way!

    Of course the temptation of all that heavenly indulgent mountain food on a ski or snowboarding holiday might have you concerned about piling it on, but fear not as food = fuel and that’s exactly what you’ll be burning tonnes of each day spent on the slopes.

     

     

    Snowsports are an excellent form of cardio as well as a great way to tone and strengthen leg, core and arm muscles.

    Both skiing and snowboarding are particularly good for strengthening the ankles, lower legs, quadriceps and glutes, as you engage these muscles to control your board or skis. Both activities require good balance, which work your core muscles, pulling in your abs and helping to align your spine. As you balance, you use your arm muscles to help steady yourself, working to firm them up, particularly in the upper arms and shoulders.

    When your muscles are strong, the body works harder to use them, therefore burning more calories. This, plus being in a cold environment (where your body burns calories just to keep warm) is great news for your metabolism! On top of all these great health benefits, skiing and boarding also release adrenaline and endorphins which lift your mood and make you feel more alert, awake and happy.

     

     

    So how many calories does skiing / snowboarding burn?

    Skiing or boarding for 6 hours can burn a whopping 2000 - 3000 calories, depending on your age, weight and height. With that in mind, it may take a lot less time than you think just to burn off that mulled wine and 3 Wiener Schnitzels you had for lunch…

    Here are a few examples of some popular, hearty ski foods and drinks with an estimate of how long it takes to burn off each one (each food portion is based on a 300g serving).

     

    Food / Drink Approx. Calories Approx. amount of Skiing / Boarding it takes to burn it off
    Tartiflette 550 1hr 18mins
    Fondue 793 1hr 54mins
    Apfelstrudel with Custard 548 1hr 18mins
    Käsespätzle 885 2hr 6mins
    Germknödel 458 1hr 6mins
    Raclette 1000 2hrs 24mins
    Gnocchi with Tomato Sauce and Cheese 700 1hr 42mins
    Goulash Soup with Bread 468 1hr 6mins
    Tiroler Gröstl 758 1hr 48mins
    Wiener Schnitzel 750 1hr 48mins
    1 Nutella Crepe 579 1hr 24mins
    3 Glasses of Mulled Wine 820 2hrs
    3 Pints of Beer 546 1hr 18mins
    1 Mug of Hot Chocolate With Marshmallows and Whipped Cream 321 48mins

     

    Health Tips for Skiing & Snowboarding

    The amount of calories burned while out on the slopes are immense and give you reason to feel less guilty about what you consume après ski. A day in the mountains can be exhausting and you will find yourself needing to consume more food in order to feel energised. If you want to know about the best foods to eat in order to keep you powering through, we’ve created a little guide below.

    • Breakfast – Breakfast is the most important meal and if you want to set yourself up for a day of skiing / boarding then don’t skip it. Eating in the morning will kickstart your metabolism and give your body the fuel it needs to get through those first few runs. A protein heavy breakfast featuring plenty of salmon, ham or eggs is ideal, as it will keep you full for longer. Throw in some carbs, such as bread or potatoes, and your energy levels will be all set to go.

    • Mid-morning snack – Top up your energy levels mid-morning with a granola bar, protein bar or flapjack. It’s light enough to digest while still skiing, plus it should give you that little extra boost. Remember to keep hydrated too and to drink as much water or fruit juice as you can.

    • Lunch – Lunch is a great time to rebuild your energy. Think carbs and go for a baked potato, pasta, or a whole whole-wheat sandwich. Soups and salads are a great option too as they are packed full of healthy vegetables. Avoid too much fried, greasy food as this will sap your energy levels and leave you feeling groggy. Before hitting up the piste again, try and allow 1 hour to digest your food. If you try and get skiing again too early you risk getting stomach ache and even feeling a little dizzy – not good when navigating slightly more complex runs!

    • Mid-afternoon snack – If you feel tired again mid-afternoon, grab another granola bar, protein bar or flapjack. Fruit is another great, light option too to help keep you going until the evening.

    • Dinner – By the end of the day, your muscles will be tired and will need some good food to help them recover. Eat plenty of protein again – cheese, chicken, red meat – and some more carbs – bread, pasta, potatoes – to restore your energy levels.

     

    Feeling in the mood for a ski trip now? Check out our Last Minute Ski Holidays.



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