It’s a truly gratifying feeling when you finish one of the world’s longest ski runs. Stretch your ski legs to the maximum and conquer one of the greatest pistes known to skiers and snowboarders.
Everyone has different ideas about what makes a great ski run. You could prefer tree lines, steep drops, roller coaster terrain or just a long gentle slope. Rather than choosing the top 5 longest ski runs ever, we have selected a variety of favourites amongst the team which you can enjoy on this winter’s ski holiday.
Get the most out of your ski holiday and gain those vertical ski miles with these best long ski runs.
5. Peak to Creek, Whistler
Selected by Phil, Sales Team Leader
Peak to Creek is an 11 km intermediate run with a variety of terrain and iconic views. You’ll experience a bit of everything on this ski run – from tree glades, to rollers, to steep sections and huge alpine bowls. From Whistler’s Peak Chair to the base by Creekside Gondola, you can rack up to 1544 vertical metres whilst riding this epic piste. Don't forget to stop at Dusty's bar at the bottom of the run in Creekside and sample their legendary ribs and ceaser cocktails.
Find out more about skiing in Whistler
Dusty's pub in Creekside at the end of the Peak to Creek run
4. Saulire, Courchevel
Selected by Laura, Head of Digital Marketing
One of my favourite aspects of the Saulire is the stunning mountain views at the peak (2700m). The Saulire/Creux range is a network of red and black runs between 2700-2000m, which then open up into blues as you ski down into the villages. Whilst skiing down Saulire you can view the famous Couloir formations, including Grand Couloir which you may like to tackle towards the end of your trip once your ski legs are fully warmed up! Even Great Britain’s number one ski cross athlete, Emily Sarsfield, calls this one of her favourite ski runs.
Find out more about skiing in Courchevel
3. La Sache, Tignes
Selected by AJ, Sales Director
If you are an expert skier or snowboarder and love a challenging piste, La Sache in Tignes down to Le Bréviere is brilliant and very long.
La Sache is a long black run that gets steep and fast as long as it’s done before Lunch. After lunch it gets VW Beetle size moguls that really throw the intermediates who clutter up the steepest part of the Run. If conditions are good, you can discover great off-piste on the left hand side as well.
Find out more about skiing in Tignes
2. Pic Blanc to L’Enversin d’Oz, Alpe d’Huez
Selected by Krystelle, Ski Editor
Alpe d’Huez is famous for its long ski runs, which is perfect if you love a holiday packed with plenty of skiing. Did you know that the Alpe d'Huez Grand Domaine de Ski offers 5 descents with a total vertical drop of 10,000m between them? My favourite line is the Pic Blanc (3330m) to L’Enversin d’Oz (1125m) – that’s over 2000m vertical meters!
From the peak of Pic Blanc it is a black run down to 2700m, but after that it is a mix of red and blue pistes to the finish. The runs take you right across the ski resort over a mix of terrains. Alpe d’Huez is known for its great snow conditions, so even in late season you can still conquer this huge run all the way to the bottom.
Or for the more adventurous, Alpe d’Huez is home to the longest black run in Europe, La Sarenne. The illustrious Sarenne is 16 km long and starts at the peak of Pic Blanc. The legend is quite deceptive, as the last half is a gentle slope along the river. Even though it’s not a particularly scary black run, your legs will be burning by the end (if not in the middle). Read more about Alpe d’Huez in our recent blog 10 reasons Alpe d'Huez is a must-ski destination
1. The OK, Val d’Isere
Selected by Thomas, Senior Ski Sales Expert
This run has it all, not least the heritage of one of the oldest World Cup Downhill courses but also its varied terrain. Named after local legends Oreiller and Killy, OK run means a thousand metres of vertical drop set in stunning surroundings. Access is by underground funicular, cable car or two stage chair lift. The OK confers plenty of bragging rights to ‘intermediates’ who compare times with Ski Sunday stars thanks to generous width enabling plenty of turns if necessary.
Skiers marvel at the start of Mont Blanc views and soon find their pace along the well-groomed rollers gradually building up in steepness. Passing the Folie Douce is when one can stretch legs and let gravity tow you into speeds beyond comfort zone. The increasingly blur of surroundings becomes more acute as after the cable car the gradient becomes more of a wall than a slope. Manage this section in a schuss before the tree line will certainly turn heads, especially from those on the terrace of the rustic Le Triffolet restaurant or those on the chairlifts above. The relentless vertical drop within the tree line also starts to take its toll on the thighs, turning at will highly recommended as the piste narrows and crowds increase. The last section is a nice drop finishing in La Daille but not before plenty of bumps present themselves on the sides of the piste should you want to mix up your style. .
Find out more about skiing in Val d'Isere
Other long favourites include:
Best for beginners - Cascades, Flaine: The longest blue run in Europe
Best for off piste - La Vallée Blanche, Chamonix: A 22km glacier route starting from the Aiguille du Midi
Best ski circuit- Sella Ronda, Dolomites: Ok it’s not just one run, but it’s very gratifying to complete.
Best for rollers – Jerusalem, Meribel
Best for destroying your legs – Olympic, Avoriaz