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Risoul - Ski Resort and Snow Summary
Skiing in Risoul
Risoul - Ski Resort in La Forêt Blanche, French Alps - 180km of Piste (1650m to 2750m)
Very pleasant for a purpose-built centre, Risoul has the largest doorstep skiing area in the Southern Alps, being linked to Vars. Pistes are usually quiet with lift queues a rarity, unlike the sun, which shines 320 days a year.
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Risoul Ski Facts
|3||Black Pistes (2km)|
|14||Red Pistes (25km)|
|18||Blue Pistes (38km)|
|10||Green Pistes (15km)|
|30km||Cross Country Pistes|
The French ski resort of Risoul is part of the La Forêt Blanche ski area with access to 108 individual pistes. In addition to the skiing in Risoul itself (180km of pisted ski runs), the appropriate ski Lift Pass will allow you to ski or snowboard in the other La Forêt Blanche ski resort of Vars. Risoul is directly linked by Ski Lift to the ski areas of Vars.
The ski resort itself is above 1500m, so skiing or boarding back to the resort is usually possible. With pistes above 2500 metres, skiing and snowboarding is assured throughout the season.
Snowmaking :- Risoul is able to augment natural snow, on 35km of ski runs, with 25 Snow Cannons.
Ski Lift Capacity :- The 26 Ski Lifts of Risoul are able to uplift 22,000 skiers / snowboarders per hour.
Skiing in Risoul
Risoul's large sunny terrain is almost entirely within a vast snowbowl that allows runs to radiate out from all directions. The connection over to Vars, which was completed in 1986, is well established at a high point on the circuit giving a snowsure link and enabling a total skiable terrain tally of 180km (over 106 miles).
Beginners are likely to start by using special learner tows right by the resort on the wide sunny slopes, great for staggering to one of the cafés after classes end. The compact nature of the resort means most guests will find they can get from apartment, to rentals, to ski school, to lessons to bar without too much stress. Once the basics have been mastered on the piste there's easy progression up the mountain with several long easy greens beginning higher up the bowl and served by the Clos du Vallon chair.
Intermediates will enjoy the huge Foret Blanche the most with long blues and reds both above and below the treeline, the latter providing shelter on cold days. The trip over to Vars gives you a feeling of ski touring, but make sure you start heading back before 3pm in order to reach all the last lifts of the day. Popular runs include the Pinitaux Superior which includes moguls and short steeps, whilst the long blue down to Vars Sainte-Marie is an 8km (5mile) long treat.
Experts have more limited choices although there are 10 blacks, the majority (eight) above Vars, which has the steepest skiing on the circuit. There can be good off-piste powder above Risoul to tackle with a guide after snowfalls, and the moderate gradients make it suitable for first-timers.
Snowboarding in Risoul
A good choice for 'boarders who enjoy terrain parks as Risoul is one of the pioneers of park design with one of the best in France. The resort's terrain park is highly regarded and well designed with a wide variety of features for mltiple ability levels. Of the slopes there's a wealth of fun terrain in the trees and powder and Risoul believes that almost half of its visitors are 'boarders.
Risoul Aprés Ski
The giant snowbowl above Risoul funnels down to a semi-circular bank of buildings which include bars, restaurants and shops. These remain lively all day as skiers and 'boarders stop off for snacks and drinks, and they continue to be the centre of activity after the lifts close and into the evening.
The scene gets busier every year and has been boosted by the boom in snowboarder visits. Current favourites include The Yetti with a variety of Dutch beers and live music at peak times. La Licorne and La Cherine are also popular.
Apart from wining and dining Risoul has a cinema, skating rink and evening snow shoe walks are organised. The two discothèques are Le Morgan's Club and Le Cham Rock.
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Risoul in brief
Risoul Ski Resort is:
Good for Expert Skiers.
Excellent for Intermediate Skiers.
Very good for Beginners.
Very good for Snowboarding.
Opened : December 22, 2012
Closed : April 15, 2013
Opening Subject To Snow Conditions.
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