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The French Alps ski specialist

Snow Making: Snow Cannons Can Change Everything

Most of our featured resorts have invested heavily in snow cannons over the past decade. Usually they start running them in late November in order to build a good base layer for the natural stuff. Then at every opportunity during the season they will run them in order to provide good reserves of snow. 

Snow Cannon in Action
Snow cannons have allowed many resorts to lengthen their season irrespective of weather conditions and have been highly effective at guaranteeing that slopes will remain open. (Above) Snow cannon in action.


(Above) Taken by one of our directors on their annual family ski holiday in Vars Sainte Marie at 1650m in April 2012. This was after a long spell of unusually warm weather (over 20c at 1600m in March). It shows the two runs that allow skiers to go back to the bottom of Ste Marie and which have been maintained using snow cannons and smooth piste work by the piste bashers.


(Above) This picture was also in Vars on the same day but at the base of the main resort (Vars les Claux 1850m) so as you can see there was still plenty of snow otherwise.


(Above) This picture was also taken by one of our director on their annual family ski holiday in Montgenevre in mid-April 2011 (the 2010/2011 season was widely reported as the worst of the last 60 years in terms of snow fall). Montgenevre has two sides and this was the smaller South facing slopes. It shows the run that goes back to Le Hameau des Airelles residence that we feature and to the Chalvet télécabine lift. They managed to keep the two slopes open until the end of the season with their snow cannons.


(Above) This was on the actual slope made of artificial snow towards the bottom (Le Hameau des Airelles is on the right)


These pictures show the bottom of the slopes - still in Montgenevre – ESF ski school meeting point and slopes above on the main North facing side on the same day as the above.


To see a guideline of the amount of snow cannons in each resort or ski domain, see the 'ski facts' section on individual resort pages. You will also find past snow data under the 'historical snow' tab.


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