In the past few years I've turned into a bit of a fair weather rider and found myself choosing the sunny month of March over the earlier months. Peak December is too expensive, January is too cold, February too busy so I find March to be the perfect month for a ski holiday. If you can only fit in one ski holiday and need to decide what time of the season to go, choose March. By the time March comes around snow bases have built up enough over the season so the slopes are in the best condition for an excellent week of skiing or snowboarding. The days get longer in the spring so you get more ski time for your money, which also means you can take advantage of long lunches in the sunshine whilst still fitting in a few more hours of skiing after. There is also still a good chance of fresh snow, but when the snow does fall it is often just for a short period (overnight or just 1 or 2 days) so there is a good possibility of a perfect bluebird powder day during your ski week. And the best thing about skiing in March… après sessions in the sunshine!
Here are the top 5 ski resorts for skiing in March:
Austria is beautiful whatever the season, whether it's covered in a blanket of snow or the foot of the mountains and villages are surrounded my green grass and budding flowers. As many ski villages in Austria sit at a much lower altitude compared to on top of the mountain, in March you can already see spring coming to life in Mayrhofen village. This means you can spend the day up on the Penken mountain shredding the slopes up to 2500m and then retreat down the mountain to mild temperatures and pretty Austrian scenery for the evening. I was on a group ski holiday in Mayrhofen in March 2015 and had a brilliant week; we even had fresh snowfall 2 out of the 6 days!
White Lounge mountain bar at Ahorn in Mayrhofen
Alpe d'Huez is a brilliant all-round ski resort that caters for skiers and snowboarders of all abilities. The town sits at 1860m and the ski area peaks at 3330m up on the glacier allowing high altitude skiing and guaranteed snow. The Pic Blanc glacier is so high that on a clear day you can see one-fifth of France! There are plenty of bars and restaurants on and off the mountain for you to soak up the sunshine at any time of the day, and there is even a large open air swimming pool in the middle of town if you feel like a break from the snow.
Skiing in March is all about the beautiful weather and awesome ski conditions, and La Plagne has some of my favorite scenery in France. Sunrises and sunset views from Belle Plagne are magical and heading up the Roche de Mio to take in the vast expanse of the stunning Tarantaise valley is the best start to the ski day. On a clear day (most days in March) you can see the Courchevel and the Altiport across the valley from the top of La Grande Rochette at Plagne Centre.
Belle Plagne in the distance, the top village in La Plagne
Head to the swanky ski resort of Courchevel in the magnificent Three Valleys ski area and enjoy the abundance of mountain sun terraces. At the far end of the budget try the nautical themed Le Cap Horn next to the altiport for the best seafood and sushi in resort. Bel Air in Courchevel 1650 is located in a stunning spot on the mountain. Les Verdons is ideal for a beer break in a deckchair. Bouc Blanc has a huge sun terrace and Le Panoramic wins for the best views!
When the sun is blazing down it always encourages you to stop for a quick cheeky pint or head to an outside bar after skiing. What’s the best place for après?… ST ANTON! Ski hard all day across the epic Arlberg ski region then retire back to St Anton for a legendary session and Krazy Kangaruh or Mooserwirt.
Mooserwirt bar. Photo: Mooserwirt.at
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Here is AJ to tell you more about why his favourite time of the year to ski is March:
Take a look back at the best ski videos of 2015. Last year was an excellent year for skiing and snowboarding as technology continues to advance, as athletes reinvent freestyle tricks and as people become more creative with media. How will 2016 top this? Earlier this year we put together our top 5 videos from winter 2014/15, so we’ve picked some fresh favourites for this end of year round up. 2015 was full of amazing snowsports videos and films, from record breaking freestyle to hilarious ski humour to Hollywood style cinematography in the world’s most exotic snowy locations.
Once again, GB’s Billy Morgan pushes the boundaries of freestyle snowboarding and stomps a trick that everyone else can only dream about. On his last run of the ski season he lands the world’s first quadruple cork:
‘French Mountains’ created this hilarious comedy video of sayings overheard in French ski resorts. For anyone that has had a ski holiday in a resort in France, you would have heard quite a few of these before!
GB snowboarder, Jamie Nichols, goes bigger and better for his 2nd stunt at The Snow Centre, Hemel Hempstead. Here’s what Jamie gets up to in the summer months in the UK:
This fast paced short ski film starring Kevin Rolland and Julien Régnier features locations all over La Plagne – evening skiing down the Bobsleigh track! It’s super stylised, fun-filled and amazing to see all the locations used in and around La Plagne.
The perfect video to see how far snowboarding, and snowsports, has progressed. It’s easy to see why this is our favourite video of 2015:
This ultimate bucket list destination is bigger and better than ever this season as it celebrates its 50th anniversary. Jackson Hole is synonymous as the pinnacle of extreme skiing and is often regarded as the nation’s best ski resort.
This is the birthplace of big mountain skiing, home to many snowsport pioneers and features in some of our favourite extreme videos including The Art of Flight, Almost Ablaze and Jeremy Jackson’s Higher.
Jackson Hole is located in Wyoming neighbouring the stunning Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Park’s. As well as discovering this authentic American cowboy town you are also treated to the unique wildlife and wilderness in the region. The ski resort was created to rival European ski area and is now compared to Chamonix, Verbier and St Anton.
There is plenty of terrain to keep an expert rider occupied for the whole season, but there are also many runs for the non-advanced. Beginner and intermediate pistes make up half of the ski area since a new high speed lift opened up the Casper area last season.
In just 50 years Jackson Hole has evolved into a world class resort where passionate skiers and snowboarders can dare to live the dream. Take a look at the new video celebrating Jackson’s 50th
The 50th anniversary is the perfect time to remember how amazing this ski destination is and why it is at the top of many ski bucket lists. Here are the top 5 reasons why Jackson Hole should be next on your list:
Jackson Hole town has preserved its American west roots so that visitors can still experience the cowboy lifestyle. If you’re not visiting during rodeo season there is still plenty on offer to forge your own frontier memories.Once you are off the mountain, don you cowboy boots and discover the superb boutiques and saloons on the wooden cladded boardwalk shopping area. Seek out a true cowboy’s fuel and enjoy Wyoming made Whiskey and world class beers in one of Jackson’s many bars.If you are looking for something more unique, get behind the reins of a traditional horse drawn carriage and ride into the sunset across the beautiful snowy valley.
Famous home grown whiskey
With stunning scenery everywhere you turn, a ski holiday in Jackson Hole will feel like the ultimate adventure. From elk in Grand Teton National Park to bison in Yellowstone National Park to natural hot springs in the Bridger Teton National Forest, there are a wondrous amount of wildlife and wilderness on your doorstep.
The Grand Prismatic Pool at Yellowstone, Elk at Grand Teton National Park & Lake Jackson
There is over 1200m of epic vertical skiable terrain on offer at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. The legendary backcountry zones and bounty of fresh snow makes this a focal point for advanced skiers in search of glory and adventure. The Mountain Resort is known for high alpine steeps, long runs and an open gate policy allowing riders to access the backcountry playground.Jackson Hole is home to some of the top freestyle athletes in the world including Travis Rice, Tommy Moe, Max Hamer and Jess McMillan. An extreme adventure wouldn’t be complete without an attempt at the infamous Corbet’s Couloir. As you cruise up on the tram you can take a glimpse of the scary peak before you come face to face with it. No other resort in North American has a chute so legendary that skiers and snowboarders come from all over the planet to tackle this ultimate ski run. Find out more about the thrill seeking terrain here.
Discover your inner cowboy at the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar in the heart of Jackson. As well as western style dancing, live bands, wooden cladding and animal mounts, the bar stools are genuine saddles! This famous bar is a reminder of what the wild Wyoming west was, and still is.
Million Dollar Cowboy Bar
To celebrate this special occasion there are lots of exciting new additions to the ski area. Skiers and snowboarders can enjoy the new mountain restaurant, Piste Mountain Bistro.The new Teton quad lift opens up access to an intermediate area and 3 pistes including, expanding the Wide Open piste, creating the steep Kemmerer run and the Crags Run along the northern ridgeline. Just for this memorable year, Jackson Hole have a selection of lift pass offers for this season. There is a limited edition 10 day pass that is available all winter, the 50th anniversary Gold Pass will come with 4 ‘buddy pass’ vouchers (50% off 1 day lift passes), and if you hold a season pass to anywhere in the world you can receive 50% off Jackson Hole passes between Jan 11-31st.
View Jackson Hole's 50th video series
View ski holiday packages in Jackson Hole: The Lodge Cowboy Village Log Cabins Ranch Inn Snake River Lodge & Spa The Wort Hotel Snow King Resort Inn at Jackson Teton Mountain Lodge Spring Creek Ranch Parkway Inn
The Tirol region in Austria is one of the most exciting places to be this winter. With the rise in UK arrivals in the area last season there have been lots of new and improved innovations in Tirol over this summer. From new linked ski areas, to enhanced lift infrastructure and new accommodations, there has never been a better time to visit Austrian Tirol. Find out more about what's new for the Austrian Tirol this season.
Here are the top 5 ski resorts that will be well worth the visit this season:
After years of talk about linking up with Saalbach, this will finally be a reality from December 2015. This area will become the talk of Austria as huge possibilities will open up. The new, high speed Tirol S gondola will link Fieberbrunn in Tirol with Saalbach-Hinterglemm-Leogang in Salzburgerland. This new connection will join up 270km of piste and will become the largest interconnected ski area and most varied in Austria.
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Sölden will be the talk of the town when it hits the silver screen this winter in the James Bond film, Spectre. Anything good enough for 007 will be popular amongst fans and will be the place to be this season. Sölden is an Alpine Ski World Cup venue and one of the most famous ski areas in the world. The state of the art lift system teamed with the 145km of perfect pistes makes this resort a dazzling diamond in Tirol. The 3 mountain peaks over 3000m and 2 glacier ski areas makes the resort one of the most snow-sure in Austria. Powder hounds will bask in the freeride ski and snowboard area at the Gaislachkogl peak. If you heading over this way this winter, don’t forget to ski down the 15km route from Schwarze Schneide at Rettenbach Glacier.
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Mayrhofen is popular among Britons because it is a great all-round resort for both skiers and snowboarders. This season Mayrhofen will be unveiling the new and improved Penkenbahn which is now a state of the art 3S gondola. This will dramatically reduce the lift queues and waiting times getting up the mountain. Mayrhofen and the Ziller Vally resorts (which are linked by easy bus and train links) have a hugely varied circus of pistes which cater for all levels, including high glacier runs, expert parks, pretty tree lined runs and leisurely slopes. The après is up there with the best of Austria; from on-mountain après at the igloo White lounge to dancing on the tables at Brück'n Stadl to late night partying at Harakiri. With brilliant skiing, fun après, large town with plenty of shops and restaurants, plus easy transport links to explore the surrounding areas it’s no surprise that thousands of Brits head here.
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This first rate ski resort is consistently our top seller in Austria. Whilst you’re not skiing or snowboarding on your holiday you want to be discovering the best après ski, and St Anton is renowned as the best ski party town in the world. Intermediate and advanced riders will love the range of challenging pistes across St Anton and the Arlberg region, plus there are plenty of back country areas if you are looking to head off piste with a guide.
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The charming fairytale town, large ski area and friendly Austrian atmosphere keep skiers and snowboarders coming back year after year. Kitzbuhel is the text book example of Austrian skiing and offers everything you would want for a ski holiday in Tirol. In the recent Ski Club of Great Britain consumer research report, Kitzbuhel had the biggest jump in the Top 10 ski resorts, jumping up an incredible 36 ranks to spot number 8 confirming its popularity over last season. The home of the prestigious Hahnenkamm ski race offers 170km of varied ski slopes across the large mountain range. From the mix of blues and red runs on the home mountain, to the fun freeride areas around the 3S and Jochberg to the wide blues at Pass Thurn and the beginner slopes at the Kitzbuheler Horn, there is something for everyone.
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"Just home from Christmas in Val d'Isere... this was the best ski holiday I have ever been on. Val is stunning, the hotel fabulous, staff sensational and skiing out of this world. We booked through Iglu. They were fantastic. Peter had great ski knowledge, offered advice and went the extra mile. " - Pamela (Dec 2015)