Three family-friendly resorts with surprisingly good off-piste

The best place to find freshies is to head where no one else is looking for it… at these three family-orientated resorts you’ll be (almost) the only one venturing into the sidecountry

Away from Lech's family-friendly blues are endless powdery lines| Sepp Mallaun / Lech Zuers am Arlberg

Away from Lech’s family-friendly blues are endless powdery lines| Sepp Mallaun /
Lech Zuers am Arlberg

Alpe d’Huez, France

You’d be amazed at the off-piste potential in Alpe d’Huez – pretty much everywhere you look you can zip off the groomers and access fun freeride terrain. A good introduction is to hit the Sarenne (the world’s longest black run) and check out the off-piste either side, with its combination of mellow and more technical lines.

Les Menuires, France

Touted as a cheap and cheerful family resort in the Three Valleys, Les Menuires nevertheless has easy access to rewarding and not-too-challenging freeride terrain. One of the best options is the wide open Vallon du Lou off the back of La Masse, while the excellent off-piste terrain of Val Thorens is also within easy reach.

Lech, Austria

Lech’s traditional charm and excellent lift system appeal strongly to families and intermediates, but the resort also has a fine array of ski routes and high alpine touring runs, marked on the piste map, which in plain English are off-piste runs that you don’t have to search out yourself (although with a guide the opportunities are even more massive). Check out the thrilling and challenging Schwarze Wand descent.

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