Vallee Blanche: famous off-piste skiing in Chamonix
Ski resort:
La Vallèe Blanche

Vallee Blanche in brief


Visit Vallee Blanche for challenging glacier skiing and snowboarding and amazing views of the Rhône-Alpes.

Resort name:

Vallee Blanche (Chamonix)


Rhône-Alpes, south-east France

Nearest airport:


Transfer time:

1 hr (by car)


3,842 m (top of Aiguille du Midi)

Total ski runs:

20 km


Off-piste skiing, snowboarding

Did you know?

Vallee Blanche is one of the longest ski runs in Europe with a total descent of over 2 km.


Skiing in Vallee Blanche


The Vallee Blanche ski area in Chamonix is one of the most challenging and rewarding off-piste skiing experiences in the world. Experienced skiers staying at Chamonix regularly visit the area for a day of amazing glacier skiing and spectacular views - the entire run can take around 5 hours to complete.

The Vallee Blanche run begins at the top of Aiguille du Midi (3,842 m), which is accessed via a cable car, and takes skiers around 2,000 m down the glacier to Chamonix town. As with any off-piste ski area, the run is only recommended for confident intermediate and expert skiers. There are 4 possible routes to take, with guides advised for all due to the dangers posed by crevasses and potential avalanches.

The first route, the classic or voie normal route, is the easiest and also the longest. The run is difficult to begin with (the first third of it is above 3,000 m) and then gets a little easier the further you go, and takes skiers around some spectacular rocky outcrops. The other routes are known as Le Vrai Vallee Blanche, the Petit Envers du Plan and the Grand Envers du Plan, and are more difficult. Be sure to wear the relevant safety gear when tackling any of the 4 routes.

You may want to stop halfway through for lunch. There’s a refuge where you can stop, or you can simply picnic in the snow. At the end, you may be able to ski down to the town depending on the quality of the snow, but you’ll likely have to hop on a cable car to Montenvers and then get the train to the resort. Skiers are advised to attempt the Vallee Blanche no later than noon and to make the return from Montenvers before 16:30 at the latest.

It’s possible for snowboarders to try the Vallee Blanche with the assistance of a guide, but there are difficult sections for boards and the snow can be less than ideal in the spring, when the slush means it’s difficult to ride across it as smoothly as you’d like without the help of poles.









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