Get a breath of fresh air. Go at your own pace. Experience the joys of snowsports. Admire nature at its finest. Follow animal tracks; perhaps you’ll be luckly enough to spot a marmot, an eagle or a chamois mountain goat… Or quite simply soak up the peace and quiet.
Nordic skiing and the benefits it offers are within everyone’s reach. In general, children can give it a go from the age of about four.
And regardless of your age, it offers something for everyone, whether its just for fun or as a sport.
For beginners to experts, this all-round sport provides many health and well-being benefits: increased cardio-respiratory function, better muscle tone, improved coordination and balance, a slimmer physique, a stronger body, a chance to get away from it all and recharge your batteries…
The benefits are manifold, whatever technique you choose.
The term »Nordic skiing» covers a wealth of different techniques, each one inviting you to discover stunning views.
Generally carried out in wide-open spaces, Nordic skiing is actually called »Ski de Randonnée Nordique» (Nordic Touring Skiing) in French (or »SRN» for those in the know!), which involves crossing snow-covered lands at medium-altitude or on higher altitude plateaux. Using wide skis – for better stability and flotation in the snow – with an anti-slide mechanism and skins to go uphill, the aim is to alternate between uphill and downhill sections.
Cross-country skiing on the other hand is done on marked and groomed trails, using either the »classic» or »skating» technique.
- Using the classic technique, skiers propel themselves forward from one ski to another over pairs of parallel tracks cut into the snow.
- Skating technique is faster and more energetic and is generally done on a smooth, firm snow surface. It looks more like ice skating or rollerblading and as it’s a bit more physical and technical, it can take a little longer to learn than classic style.
Biathlon combines both cross-country skiing and rifle shooting. The good news is, you can do all of these disciplines just a few minutes from Brides-les-Bains!
Set at the heart of the amazing 3 Vallées ski area, easily accessible from Brides-les-Bains, Méribel boasts 120 kilometres of cross-country skiing trails. Between protected forests, snow-capped summits and stunning landscapes, this vast terrain is nothing short of a snowy paradise…
In Le Plan de Tueda nature reserve, you’ll find 8 kilometres of green and blue Nordic ski trails in a preserved natural environment. This magical setting is the perfect backdrop for easy, fun sessions.
At the Altiport, with snow-covered fir trees and views over the valley, you’ll find 25 kilometres of trails for all levels. There’s also a Biathlon centre here, where you can try your hand at rifle shooting. Beginner and advanced level courses and improvement sessions are available.
Marked out for classic and skating techniques, two greens, two blues and one red trail, as well as a trail linking La Tania and Courchevel are accessible in the Méribel and Mottaret sectors.
If you want to have a go, or improve your fitness level, Méribel’s ESF French Ski School offers 2 Nordic skiing techniques: Skating and classic.
The ESF ski instructors run blocks of 5 or 6 mornings, starting from Le Blanchot (on the Route de l’Altiport) for levels 1 & 2. Beginner’s lessons take place in the afternoon.
Check your level
Opt for ski coaching – 5 sessions in a small group (4 people max) to see fast progress. From Monday to Friday, from 12.30pm to 2pm. A ski coaching session lasts 90 minutes. If you would like to book an instructor for half a day or a full day, private lessons are also available.
Take the Olympe gondola lift
(Open from 10/12/2022 to 28/04/2023)
then take the C line bus towards the Altiport or
the D line bus towards Méribel-Mottaret-Lac de Tuéda.
The bus stop is near the Olympic flame/Olympic park.
SKI COACHING: From 450€ for 5 sessions. Monday - Friday, from 12.30pm to 2pm
PRIVATE LESSONS: From 225€ per session from 9.15am to 11.45am
215€ from 2.15pm to 4.45pm
Approximately 430€ for a full day starting at 9.15am