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Top 5 glacier resorts for freeride and summer skiing

With ski season over and the warmer months approaching we just can’t help ourselves by thinking about the potential places we could be shredding. Europe has some fantastic glacial resorts that provide incredible snow conditions over the winter and are even open over summer for keen skiers and snowboarders, here's our top picks!

1. The Pitztal Glacier, Pitztal, Austria

There aren’t a huge variety of ski runs here but the area is great for training over the summer. It can be very crowded with the first three lifts during October and November (full of professional skiers), but during the rest of the year there are barely any crowds.

Don’t miss Panorama run, it is very steep and icy and amazing for giant and downhill skiing. If you’re looking for gnarly places for freeride, spectacular views, friendly Tyrolian people, great value of money and no queues, Pitztal has it all!

It can be quiet in the evenings once the lifts are closed so if you’re after après ski head to nearby Obergurgl or Sölden

Pitztal Glacier

Photo : pitztal.com

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2. Glacier 3200 - 3600, Les 2 Alpes, France

Les 2 Alpes has the largest skiable glacier in Europe and is the second oldest ski resort in France, after Chamonix. If you’re looking for a good mix of great skiing, partying and extra activities in the afternoon then this is the resort for you!.

The lower slopes down to the resort are steeper and more challenging than the higher ski areas, including the wide and forgiving glacier runs. During the summer the lower areas of Les 2 Alpes are a popular venue for downhill and freeride mountain biking, whilst summer skiing takes place on the glacier between 2800m and 3600m. The glacier in summer is great for practicing freestyle tricks at its snowpark.

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3. Theodul Glacier, Cervinia, Italy / Zermatt, Switzerland

Cervinia and Zermatt share the 23km of slopes open at the Theodul Glacier during the summer months. This is a popular area for British skiing camps with the long summer opening, typically running from May to mid-November.

The Gravity Park is one of the highest in Europe and features a half pipe, kickers up to 20 metres, 10 rails and boxes for all levels. 

Theodul Glacier

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4. Glacier de la Grande Motte, Tignes, France

The Grande Motte glacier in Tignes is one of the most snow-sure ski areas in the Alps with the slopes open nearly 8 months a year. For summer 2019 the glacier is open from June 22nd to August 4th with 20 km of pistes, the snowpark and cross country runs all open.

Grande Motte Glacier

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5. The Hintertux Glacier, Hintertux, Austria

The Hintertux glacier is Austria's only year round ski resort and the best thing about it is the lack of queues due to its super-fast lift-system. The real secret here is that there is amazing off piste and brilliant ski areas for free-touring and practising professional slaloms.

Snowboarders and free-skiers certainly appreciate the year round freestyle opportunities at the Betterpark Hintertux at 3200m and is a favourite meeting point for local riders as well as the international scene. Hinter is one of the highest freestyle-spots in Austria and is considered by many to be the best Snowpark in the Alps. Stay in Mayrhofen for access to the Hintertux glacier.

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