Ski in Gressoney Saint Jean
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Gressoney Saint Jean - Ski Resort and Snow Summary
Skiing in Gressoney Saint Jean
Gressoney Saint Jean - Ski Resort in Monterosa, Italian Alps - 50km of Piste (1220m to 2860m)
The largest village on the Monte Rosa pass is not actually linked by lift to the others, although it is a short drive to the centre of the network. There are 13km of trails locally.
Gressoney Saint Jean
Gressoney Saint Jean Ski Facts
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Gressoney Saint Jean
The Italian ski resort of Gressoney Saint Jean is part of the Monterosa ski area with access to 64 individual pistes. In addition to the skiing in Gressoney Saint Jean itself (50km of pisted ski runs), the appropriate ski Lift Pass will allow you to ski or snowboard in the other Monterosa ski resorts of Antagnod, Brusson, Champoluc and Gressoney la Trinité.
With pistes above 2500 metres, skiing and snowboarding is assured throughout the season.
Snowmaking :- Gressoney Saint Jean is able to augment natural snow, on 12km of ski runs, with 30 Snow Cannons.
Ski Lift Capacity :- The 11 Ski Lifts of Gressoney Saint Jean are able to uplift 2,687 skiers / snowboarders per hour.
There are four Airports within two hours drive, so ski weekends, snowboard breaks and short ski holidays to Gressoney Saint Jean are perfectly feasible.
Skiing in Gressoney Saint Jean
Skiers in Alagna can take the modern cable car from the village centre straight up to Pianalunga (a rise of nearly 850 vertical metres) and from there decide whether to take the new cable car a further 850 metres higher to Col d'Olen (2881m - a world beating 1,700m vertical ascent from two lifts!) - which opens up the links to Gressoney and Champoluc; or whether to take the chairlift to Bocchetta elle Pisse (2396) and the slopes used for competitions.
From there its possible to ascend to the Punta Indren Glacier and the full 2000m+ vertical.
The Olen and Bors Valleys offer fairly difficult skiing and spectacular off piste opportunities.
For beginners and early intermediates there's a special separate area, Wold, some 500m north of the village. Although low altitude it has full snowmaking cover.
From Gressoney, the central valley, lifts stretch up on either side to reach trails back down to Champoluc on one side and Alagna on the other. Runs of all standards descend on either side and back down to the resort.
There are many on and off piste itineraries in the area including the most popular Mount Rose Grand Tour which begins at 8.30 with a rendezvous at the Monterosa Ski offices in Champoluc. There's a coach link to Frachey from where participants can ski to the Gressoney Valley via Colle della Bettaforca (2701m) continuing on to the Passo dei Salati (2967m) and then descending along the Valsesia face of the slopes. An ascent to Punta Indren (3260m) follows with an off piste descent towards Gressoney. The tour ends back in Champoluc at 4pm.
Heliskiing is another popular activity given the wide range of high peaks in the area - and the proximity to France where heliskiing is banned. There's a wide choice of descents available to suit almost all ability levels. You can also take a helicopter to the top of the Lys mountain pass for a descent along the Grenz glacier down to Zermatt. Two or three day variants of the tour, staying overnight in Cervinia or Zermatt, are available.
Away from the main Three Valleys area, there are small separate ski areas on the Pass, including an area of mostly red and blue slopes above Antagnod, famous for their sunshine record, and at Gressoney St Jean there are famous slopes down through the old Swiss pines of Weissmatten.
Telemarking is also popular in the area and there' a special club for Telemarkers. Cross country skiers have valley and altitude routes (at 2025m high Pianalunga for example) around the area. However summer skiing ended here several seasons ago when work began on the lift upgrades.
Monterosa is included on The Aosta Valley pass which covers 800km (500 miles) of terrain served by nearly 200 lifts in over a dozen ski areas, including Cervinia, linked to Zermatt and other famous resorts in the area such as Pila, La Thuile and Courmayeur (a 30 minute bus ride away) which is linked to Chamonix (you need a special International variant of the ticket - see below - at an additional cost), but it's just about physically possible to ski over if you set off on the early bus.
There's no ski bus so your own transport is most useful to make the most of the pass.
Snowboarding in Gressoney Saint Jean
The free riding terrain in the Monte Rosa region is a dream for boarders. The opportunity to open up 2000 metres of vertical above Alagna with a couple of cable car rides up is a truly wonderful thing, and the wide open powder fields all the way down likewise.
There are plenty of off piste boarding and heli-boarding opportunities, but no terrain parks at the last report.
Gressoney Saint Jean Aprés Ski
Gressoney does not offer much in the way of apres ski or night life, but it's a good choice if you want to ski hard all day then relax in the evening over a quiet beer or two. There is a modest selection of small bars however. The Petit in la Trinite is good, the 'negrone' cocktail is a house special. The bar in the Jolanda Sport serves a mean Bombardino. The bars take it in turn close for one night a week so don't expect to go to the same place every night.
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Gressoney Saint Jean in brief
Gressoney Saint Jean Ski Resort is:
Very good for Expert Skiers.
Very good for Intermediate Skiers.
Very good for Beginners.
Ok for Snowboarding.
Opened : December 1, 2012
Closed : April 28, 2013
Opening Subject To Snow Conditions.
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