SkiBike Tour 2012-13 - Val d'Arly Loop

Posted: Tuesday, 19 February 2013 by Mark Kinnon in Labels: , , ,

Paul and I discussed options for the last day of the season, he wanted another mile eating run. Having consulted various piste maps and consumed two Gin & Tonics he decided that, given a free choice, he would like to do the Val d'Arly loop again. I suggest we do it "back to front" or anti-clockwise relative to the piste map.

It turned out to be perfectly feasible, although we noted a couple of disadvantages to this choice of direction. Firstly, you run along a lot of cold, North facing runs early in the day and get to see the South facing runs later in the day when they could be prone to slushiness. Secondly, a lot of the flatter, interlinking runs, are actually uphill in this direction, so extensive poling, walking or skating are involved.

Val d'Arly - some of these little hills have a 1000m of vertical drop

The Val d'Arly really is a gem, the piste plan makes the area look like a selection of little interconnected hills. But the reality is that some of these little hills have a 1000m of vertical drop and getting from one to the next can take up to an hour, even skiing at a good intermediate/expert skier speed. It might not be quite the scale of the 3 valleys, but it is close.

The infrastructure is quite heavily biased towards drag lifts and the majority of chairlifts are somewhat vintage in nature. To a reasonable skier these lifts would present no problem, but for a ski novice, Brenter or SnowScoot rider they could be a bit of a challenge. Although freestyle/pegger skibikes are not currently allowed in the Val d'Arly, even if they were, the choice of runs would be somewhat limited by the infrastructure.