Seasonnaire secrets: How to make the most of a powder day

With copious quantities of snow all over the Alps this winter, we’re dreaming of those bluebird powder days. Here one of Crystal’s expert seasonnaires suggests how to make the most of that day when it comes…

Words by Will, worked a season in Alpe D’Huez as a Jack of all Trades, and is now a lead artworker for Crystal Ski Holidays

Will in his days as a seasonnaire

A powder day or two under blue skies can make a great holiday an unforgettable one. Here are 3 major tips on how to make the very most of that elusive opportunity:

1. Get organised.

Picture this. It’s been a blizzard for the past two days and cabin fever is setting in, but tomorrow’s forecast looks to be clear skies and sunshine. What do you do?
Go out, get hammered and wake up late with a hangover strong enough to fell an ox?

HELL NO! Instead, spending the evening organising your gear before an early night. This way you can get everything on bright and early with no mad rush out the door. Check the batteries in your transceiver and have your pack ready to go, maybe even give the skis or board a quick tune so there are no excuses the next day.

2. Be safe.

If you’re even a little serious about riding powder and off-piste terrain you should have the gear that comes with it, and more importantly, know how to use it.

At the very least your pack should contain a shovel, probe and transceiver.  Avalanche safety courses are available in the UK and in the resorts. They’re invaluable for anyone wanting to get into off-piste riding and experienced skiers keeping their skills sharp.

Also, look into getting the service of a local guide, especially if you’re in an unfamiliar resort. They will take you through the basics and have the added advantage of knowing the best and safest places on the mountain to ride.

3. Don’t fly solo.

We’ve all heard the expression “no friends on a powder day”, which, while being funny, couldn’t be further from the truth.

If you’re going it alone on a powder day…
Who’s going to verify the size of that ‘cliff’ you dropped?
Who are you going to spray at the bottom?
Who’s going to capture you in your element on your GoPro as evidence of your steaziness?

But more importantly, who are you going to share those amazing runs with? After all, that’s one of the best bits about skiing and snowboarding, right?
Powder days are pretty rare creatures at the best of times, especially when you may only be in resort for a week or two. So make the very most of them, stay safe, oh, and take snacks. There’s no overpriced mountain restaurants where you’re going.

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