© 2 Alpes OT / B. Longo
Have you ever dreamed of skiing under the stars? Skiing by night is a special sensation.
If you have never tried it, we strongly suggest you give it a try on your next holiday to Les Deux Alpes. The good news is that night skiing runs every week and is open to any good intermediate skier. You don’t even need to pay extra for it.
The Lutins Slope
Situated right in the centre of the resort, the Lutins Piste is the place to go for night skiing. The slope, just above the main square, ice rink and swimming pool, is floodlit on night skiing nights, so you can see clearly where you are skiing. The Lutins button lift stays open late, so you don’t have to stop skiing and come back. You can just keep skiing at the end of the day as the other lifts shut. As night falls, the lights come on. There is no need to book or pay any extra, you just carry on using your ski pass as normal – you do need to have a valid ski pass for the day though.
The Lutins area makes up the last part of the Jandri 1 piste, which returns to the town from Les Crêtes. Like the rest of that run, it is graded blue, but it is quite steep as blue runs go. Given that it can get icy as the temperature drops, you do need to be a confident skier to enjoy night skiing here. It is possible to get off the lift two-thirds of the way up to avoid the steepest part of the run.
Night skiing runs from 17:30 until 20:00 on Tuesday to Friday evenings during the French school holidays.
Ski touring by night
If you want to get away from the hustle of the resort with your night skiing, nighttime ski touring might be just what you are looking for. The ‘Bureau des Guides’ mountain guides’ office offers introductory ski touring sessions by night, starting from the Skirie shop just after dark. After getting kitted out with touring skis, boots and climbing skins, you set off up the hill by starlight before skiing back down from the top. Different programmes are available for different levels, so enquire at the Bureau des Guides’ office, next to the main tourist office and ESF, for details.
If you like the idea of exploring the ski slopes by night but your ski level is not quite up to ski touring, snowshoeing might be the answer. Several companies in resort offer snowshoeing excursions, often by night. You can explore the pistes and tracks, dark woodland and moonlit ridges, sometimes with the option of a meal in a mountain restaurant.
If actually doing night skiing still doesn’t appeal, you can watch the experts demonstrate it instead. The ESF ski school instructors do torchlit descents from Les Crêtes into the village on Christmas Eve, New Year’s Eve and weekly during the French school holidays. The show finishes on the Lutins piste, so is best watched from the foot of the slopes near the main square and the Jandri Express lifts. There will be hot chocolate, mulled wine and sometimes fireworks to add to the fun.
During the February holidays, the ESI St. Christophe Ski School runs a guided torchlit descent for members of the public. This is aimed at children in their ski school classes but is open to others as well.