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Les Contamines

Les Contamines Ski Resort Guide

Les Contamines, France

Rated: 3/5 (from 7 ratings)

Ski Area Highlights
Recommended ForFreeriders, Intermediates, Snowboarders and Snowfall!
Total Piste Length120km75 miles
Highest Lift2,500m8,202ft
Resort Height1,164m3,819ft
 Nearest AirportsGeneva and Annecy
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Les Contamines

Pretty and compact Savoyard village with a long history, extensive skiing and a good range of shops and restaurants. The nearest lift is 1km from the village. Part of the huge Mont Blanc lift pass.

Summary

The French ski resort of Les Contamines is in the French Alps at an altitude of 1,164m3,819ft, with 120km75 miles of marked runs.

Les Contamines is part of the Ski Pass Mont Blanc area with access to 952km592 miles of downhill skiing, with 507 marked pistes, served by a total of 248 ski lifts. In addition to the skiing in Les Contamines itself (120km75 miles of pisted ski runs), the appropriate ski Lift Pass will allow you to ski or snowboard in the other Ski Pass Mont Blanc ski resorts of Argentière, Chamonix, Combloux, Cordon, Le Tour, Les Houches, Megève, Passy Plaine Joux and St Gervais Mont-Blanc.

With ski lifts as high as 2,500m8,202ft, snow cover is generally reliable.

Snow and Weather

When will it snow in Les Contamines?

The next notable snow forecast is 2cm1in, expected on 4 November.

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Snow this week

Snow Forecast by day for Les Contamines
TueWedThuFriSatSunMon

Ski Area Stats

Les Contamines Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
 9 
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
19
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
12
Green Pistes
Beginner Runs
 8 
Downhill
Total Length
120km75 miles
Cross Country
Total Length
26km16 miles
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts
24

Ski Pass Mont Blanc Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
66
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
206
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
155
Green Pistes
Beginner Runs
54
Downhill
Total Length
952km592 miles
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts
248

Altitudes

Les Contamines Ski Area Heights

Lift Heights and Resort Altitude
Highest Lift2,500m8,202ft
Lowest Piste1,164m3,819ft
Resort Altitude (Les Contamines)1,164m3,819ft
Max Vertical1,336m4,383ft

Ratings & Suitability

Ratings for Les Contamines
Freeriders
Expert Skiers
Intermediate Skiers
Beginners
Snowboarding
Snow
Apres-Ski

Les Contamines Overview

Les Contamines, or Les Contamines - Montjoie to give the resort its full official name, is a pretty and compact Savoyard village with a long history. The resort has remained relatively unspoilt by the march of time and the growth of winter tourism, with the local population still totalling around a thousand. The village is largely based around a single main street, based upon its eighteenth century baroque village church.

The large local ski area is part of the huge Mont Blanc lift pass, which includes Chamonix, Megève, Courmayeur over in Italy, the resort's nearest neighbour St Gervais (ten minutes away on the bus), and half a dozen others.

Les Contamines - Montjoie's own extensive ski area comprises 120km (75 miles) of trails, served by more than 24 lifts. What's more, the area has a strong reputation for good snow conditions, with powder lasting in good shape for days after a fall, and snow cover in general lasting when other lower ski centres on the Mont Blanc pass have none. The only aspect of the skiing that precludes perfection for some is that the main area is accessed by a regular ski bus from the resort centre.

 Notable Ski Runs

The longest possible descent in Les Contamines is 4km2 miles long.

Skiing

Les Contamines - Montjoie's large local ski area is divided in to two sectors, nominally at least, although they are fully interlinked. Above the resort itself is the majority of the skiing and 'boarding in a vast north easterly facing bowl in the Val Montjoie. Over the back is a much smaller and rather steeper area known as Hauteluce - Val Joly. In addition, there are two non-linked drag lifts close to the edge of the village which can be used by beginners.

The majority of skiers will, however, want to head up to the main area from day one, and to do that the ski bus is the best bet, unless you have transport. There are two gondolas accessing the slopes, the first, at Le Lay, is a kilometre from the village centre, but many stay on the bus another 500 metres or so to Le Pontet. Here a second gondola, generally less busy (a point especially worth bearing in mind when skiers are arriving from other areas due to lack of snow elsewhere), heads up to a point close to the top of the le Lay lift. There they both meet a third gondola, or a chair and drag in succession, which take you on up to the main mid mountain base at le Signal. There are also more beginners' slopes at the top of the first pair of gondolas.

Above Signal a network of chairs and drags fan out around the huge bowl providing 30+ largely red and black category runs with a few blues. Some lifts access the skiing over to the south facing Hauteluce area. Nearly all the terrain, including the blacks, can be mastered by intermediates. More demanding intermediate, as well as advanced skiers, will no doubt wish to make use of the Mont Blanc pass.

The local high mountain guides are highly regarded internationally. They can take you to off-piste powder on glaciers or on a spring ski touring excursion.

The local cross-country area at Notre Dame de la Gorge offers 23.5km (15 miles) of carefully maintained trails arranged in circuits, from easy to very difficult, and a 8km (five mile) circuit reserved for those wishing to use the skating technique. Facilities at the area include a cross country centre with changing rooms, waxing room and picnic room, as well as an Ecole du Ski Français office. There is also an international biathlon run (summer and winter).

Les Contamines offers good sking, particularly, for Intermediate and Beginner skiers.

Snowboarding

Les Contamines -Montjoie has good 'boarding and four excellent snowparks. Located underneath the Les Tierces detachable quad, it incorporates a mogul stadium in a special steep area and an ISF-approved half pipe equipped with a rope tow and with a hard (earth) base for guaranteed use under all snow conditions. The pipe is 120 m (380 ft) long and 17m (56ft) wide. Height is 3.5m (11.5ft) and the slope has an 18º pitch. The park also incorporates a 400m (440yd) 'boarder cross with whoop-de-doo, three 50cm (20 inch) bumps in a line, each on a 2m (6.5 ft) plateau, as well as two banked turns, one table jump and a quarter pipe. A second pipe has also been added in the centre of the village on the Les Layers slope.

Some snowboarders may be put off by the usual predominance of drag lifts, but in fact all the key areas can be reached by chair or gondola. Nightlife may also be rather quiet for some.

Location and Map

Where is Les Contamines?

This ski resort is in the French Alps in Ski Pass Mont Blanc, Haute-Savoie.

Map

Tap Show Map in Full Screen for Full-Screen, or see J2Ski's Resort map, showing Hotels and Ski Shops.

How to get there

 By Air

The nearest airport to Les Contamines is Geneva, 57 minutes drive away.

Annecy, Chambery, Sion, Lyon St-Exupéry, Grenoble, Lyon Bron, Turin Caselle, Berne and Dole–Jura airports are all within three hours drive.

Annecy and Geneva are just one hours drive away, in good driving conditions, so you can be on the piste quickly.

Infrastructure

Ski Lift Capacity

The 24 ski lifts are able to uplift 33,000 skiers and snowboarders every hour.

Snow Making

Snow-making is available, on 10km6 miles of ski runs, with 200 snow cannons.

Season Dates

When is Les Contamines open?

 Opened : December 21, 2019.

Usual opening is mid December, and usual closing is Mid April.

NOTE:- Ski area, lift and piste opening is subject to Current Snow Conditions.

Piste Map

Les Contamines Piste Map
Les Contamines

COVID-19 / Coronavirus

We don't yet have specific details of the COVID-19 precautions being taken in Les Contamines, but they are likely to include most of the following :-

  • Face masks required on lifts, and in shops.
  • Social distancing in public areas.
  • Reduced lift capacity.
  • Extensive disinfection / sanitization.

French Ski Resort COVID-19 Measures describes further measures that may also be applied.

Visit the Les Contamines Tourist Office for the latest.

Talking about Les Contamines

Mentions in recent J2Ski News Items and Snow Reports from our users...

Aprés Ski

Les Contamines - Montjoie's nightlife is generally relaxed and often quiet. The twenty or so restaurants will serve just drinks if you prefer, livelier venues include the Tetras, Ty Briez (which has a reputation for great concerts through to 3 am) , and the Saxo.

If you want something more than eating, drinking or dancing then there's an ice rink and a cinema, or you can take a sleigh ride. A trip up to the Chalet Auberge de Colombaz at 1,500 m (4,900 ft) for a traditional Savoyard evening is a popular treat. Arrive by ski lift or horse drawn sleigh, enjoy a traditional Savoie meal and then toboggan back down.

Les Contamines