The 28th most popular snowboarding destination in France.
Sunday 7 August 2016 06:44 GMT
East of Albertville and Bourg St Maurice, the Ste-Foy-Tarentaise ski domaine has 24 pistes totalling 32km that are served by 4 chairlifts with a maximum vertical descent of 1,100m (3,600 feet).
The Sainte-Foy Tarentaise ski domaine is quite popular with local and travelling snowboarders for its range of off-piste / hors-piste freeriding. Within the controlled and patrolled ski area, there are three ungroomed black diamond pistes known as Natur' Areas, including Natur' Morion, Natur' Sharpers Paradise and Natur' Crystal Dark. These are accessible from the summit of the L'Aiguille chairlift. Just beyond the avalanche-controlled boundary in the sidecountry, there are several big mountain free riding lines found by turning left off the tops of the La Marquise lift or the L'Aiguille lift. Keep in mind that the L'Aiguille lift and all associated freeride Natur' pistes are known to not open due to wind or visibility issues so check before coming up.
And, outside the ski domaine boundary, there are several exceptional backcountry freeriding routes from the summit of the Col de L'Aiguille chairlift (professional guide recommended). First, there is the popular route heading south from Col de L'Aiguille down to the remote village of Le Monal. Second, a local favorite is the route on the north-face of the Foglietiaz, which is always known to hold some powder. The route down Foglietiaz descends about 1,700m.
After a morning of shredding, head for an on-mountain lunch at Chapelle St-Guerin at the base of La Marquise lift. A little further afield, you may want to try the rustic Chez Merie Restaurant in Le Miroir.
After a long day of riding, you can try looking for some apres ski action at La Maison a Colonnes at the base.
To reach the snowboarding at Sainte-Foy Station from Bourg-Saint-Maurice, head southeast on N902 through Seez to Sainte-Foy-Tarentaise. Continue through Sainte-Foy-Tarentaise heading south on N902 for 2.6km to La Thuile, France. Watch for signs to Sainte-Foy Station. Turn left heading up the steep winding road for 3km to Sainte-Foy-Station (chains recommended for even a little snow). There is plenty of free parking. If you don't feel like driving, there is a bus from Bourg-Sainte-Maurcie four times a day. There is also a local ski bus that runs around Sainte-Foy Station several times a day.
TIP: If you are planning to arrive by train, keep in mind that the regular bus up to the resort is primarily during daylight hours. After dark, the bus runs infrequently, if at all. Therefore, you will need to take a cab from the train station to the resort. If you plan to fly into Lyon, you may want to check the train schedule before buying your flight to make sure there is a convenient transfer. If you plan to arrive Friday through Sunday, the shuttle Altibus might be a more convenient option. Since there are not many trains or buses up into this region, you are highly encouraged to advance purchase tickets and reserve your seat.
BONUS TIP: The Sainte-Foy Tarentaise ski domaine is located very close to the lesser-known eastern base of Les Arcs ski domaine. If you are staying at Sainte-Foy, make sure to budget a day or two to head down their access road and across the highway to the east and up to Les Arcs. Also, Sainte-Foy is located just down the road from Tignes and Val d'Isere, too!
Overall, Sainte-Foy-Tarentaise is the 28th most popular snowboard & freeride destination of all 47 snowboarding resorts in France. Several of the better snowboarding resorts are nearby Sainte-Foy-Tarentaise including Tignes and Val-d Isere.