Every week in March, our team is out in Chamonix bringing you up-to-date reports on the snow conditions in Chamonix, as well as the weather forecast and a round-up of what’s on.
March Back Catalogue
Friday 2nd March
We may be getting closer to Spring but a HUGE dump of fresh snow has arrived as March begins in Chamonix Mont Blanc! We have a cold front that is making the sky fall all week as disturbances pass by. Over the next 8 days, skipass.com is forecasting 103cm of snow.
Chamonix weather experts say:
Several disturbances will follow each other during the weekend and next week : very changeable westerly weather pattern causing frequent but light precipitation (snow).
Pick of the pistes
Les Houches is not only the perfect ski area for building confidence across all levels; it’s also at a lower altitude, protected from the winds that come part and parcel with weather “disturbances” as snow arrives. When other ski areas have delayed opening times due to new snowfall, oftentimes related to high winds or avalanche control work, Les Houches is a reliable bet for opening on time with the most accessible terrain.
Green slopes dominate the top of the Bellevue and Prarion lifts allowing groups and families of mixed abilities to stay together at altitude. During the busy school holiday period, these pistes are also often quieter than beginners’ areas elsewhere in the Chamonix valley.
There is even snowshoeing and cross-country ski tracks to try in Les Houches, but most importantly try the food! The privately owned mountain restaurants and refuge huts of the area are some of the MOST charming in Chamonix. Check out our Mountain Restaurants guide for our top tips.
History in Chamonix: Museums & galleries
In our guide for “bad weather” days in Chamonix, we outline some of our top choices for local culture, with an indoor environment.
From the history of Alpinism to sparkling crystals, discover the unique culture and rare gems our beloved mountains have produced. There are more than half a dozen destinations to pick’n’mix from within the valley. We love Chamonix and we love our history too, so be sure to check out our favourites.
The Espace Tairraz
As seen in today’s snow report this one central location houses the ‘Espace Alpinisme’ as well as the ‘Crystal Museum’. Take your guest card to benefit from a small reduction at this interactive exhibition and display of amazing (locally sourced) gems.
Espace Tairraz, 615 allée du Recteur Payot, 74400 Chamonix | +33 (0) 4 50 55 53 93
Celebrate with the ESF: TONIGHT
Chamonix En Rouge will take place throughout the centre of Chamonix tonight. The focal point will be the square in front of the church/tourist office from 5.15pm.
Street parade, big tombola, face paint for children, snacks, tartiflette, sound & light show, music concert.
Monday 5th March
We have the Brits to thank for our snow this week! Apparently a “complex low system” is whirling this way from over the near Atlantic Ocean (Bay of Biscaye, British Isles) with a mixture of cold and humid weather; perfect for making snowflakes.
Do be wary of fœhn winds this week which have the power to raise temperatures and shut down some piste accesses. However look forward to fresh snow, over the next 8 days; skipass.com is still forecasting over 1m of snow.
Chamonix weather experts say:
Several disturbances will follow each other : very changeable westerly weather pattern causing frequent but light precipitation (snow).
Pick of the pistes: AGAIN
Les Houches is again my choice for the perfect ski area this week. Here you can build confidence across all levels; even downhill alpine (slalom) skiers have the world famous Kandahar Piste to take on (race your friends!).
In general, Les Houches is also at a lower altitude, as mentioned last week, this means it is protected from the winds that come part and parcel with weather disturbances as snow arrives.
When other ski areas have delayed opening times due to new snowfall, oftentimes related to high winds or avalanche control work, Les Houches is a reliable bet for opening on time with the most accessible terrain.
Other than the food we can also recommend this ski area for its variety of slopes for every level. It is the perfect spot in Chamonix for families of mixed abilities to ski together with something for everyone.
There’s also an amazing view of the valley from Les Houches as below:
Getting to Les Houches using public transport
You could also consider Line #15: not strictly an express line, this runs from Chamonix to Le Prarion bubble lift, via Bellevue cable car, in Les Houches. Once in Les Houches you can even use Line #16 to travel the length of Les Houches between the ski lifts at Le Prarion and Bellevue.
You can read more about public transport in Chamonix here. We do not recommend the train to Les Houches if travelling there to ski as the train station is not conveniently located for piste access.