The first thing someone will say if you tell them that you are holidaying in Morzine this winter is ‘you must do the loop’. It can be completed by avoiding any difficult runs, like the infamous ‘Swiss Wall’ and can be done in a morning or if you take it easy, the whole day with a lunch stop in one of the 4 Swiss resorts.
Starting from the top of the Prodains Express cable car built in 2013 to provide an additional connection between Morzine and Avoriaz, you head to Switzerland via the Stade chairlift and Chavanette button lift. After conquering (or taking the Chavanette chairlift down) the Swiss Wall, the crowds seem to disappear, and the pistes open up to wide reds with perfect opportunities to practise your carving skills. In Les Crosets and Champery there are some excellent reds and blues to try. Having headed up the Grande Conche lift, its time to begin your decent into Morgins. This takes the form of a cruisey blue through the trees measuring over 4 km. From the town of Morgins, a detour toward another Swiss resort named Champoussin is a must for those with time to burn. It has in my opinion some of the best skiing in PDS; wide, quiet and with some stunning views of the dents du midi.
A short bus ride across town to the Corbeau lift and you’re on what seems to be the furthest most point of the ski area available to you. The Morgins resort is littered with slow button lifts, but the tree runs are worth the venture. When you hit the Chatel bowl, you’re back in France and on the home straight. Two plateau lifts called Portes du Soleil and Gabelou get you toward the main town, and with that the hustle and bustle of the French resorts.
On the last stretch before home, if there’s life in the legs there are some fabulous off-piste spots in between the Combes and Combebois lift coined ‘Happy Valley’ by the locals and a favourite of mine would be to plot a route under the Chaux de Rosees lift. Be careful not to fall over in the deep stuff, with an audience above. Two more lifts and you’re back where you started.
See if you can do all that in under 3 hours...