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Les Contamines - St Gervais link
Posted: 23 January 2012 06:45 AM  
Total Posts:  17
Joined  2005-07-28

The Les Contamines mayor’s office recently posted the following presentation for a proposed link up with St Gervais & Megeve.

It’s something that has been talked about for ages but it now looks like it may go ahead later this year. I suppose for those in the village who make their living from tourists such as myself it’ll bring in more punters but as far as I’m concerned it is going to spoil a section that has up till now been left to off piste skiers. If I were a permanent resident I’d object to the proposal but I guess it is up to the locals to decide.

Posted: 24 January 2012 09:46 AM   [ # 1 ]  
Jr. Member
Total Posts:  48
Joined  2009-10-09

Thasks, there is a lot of encroaching on former off piste areas, or lifts being put in that give better access to off piste. Like the Marmottes 3 leg in Alpe Dhuez. There is a plan at Puy St Vincent and also at Mongenevre that will develop some formerly off piste areas. What with all the rockered skiers hooning around you’ll soon be stuck with climbing to get any freshies at all.

Posted: 25 January 2012 03:20 PM   [ # 2 ]  
Total Posts:  58
Joined  2008-10-29

I ski Les Contamines 4-5 times a year for the last 20+ years. I could probably count on my ten fingers the number of times the Veleray ski lift has been open (15 days in 2010-2011). The area is south facing, and snow purges all the time in that area. As has been mentioned, it will give access to a lot of South facing off piste area. They will never be able to open this area with any kind of risk. Furthermore, I already imagine the hords who came over from Megeve, trying to get back accross before 4pm. Except that the Veleray ski lift is old can probably manage at best 100 skiers an hour (I completely invented this figure btw...). How will it cope with the new chair lift that just brought 6 times that into the Contamines area?

This is pure marketing stuff. It won’t work and will destroy a very large piece of untouched nature.

Posted: 25 January 2012 10:44 PM   [ # 3 ]  
Sr. Member
Total Posts:  543
Joined  2006-01-24
alpanian - 25 January 2012 03:20 PM

Furthermore, I already imagine the hords who came over from Megeve, trying to get back accross before 4pm.

We’re probably not well placed to comment on this grin There’s a segment of market whose ideal day out is skiing from one end of a ski area to another and then back. You can see fairly clearly in the PdS that some of the runs are for linking purposes only and not on quality grounds. There seems to be a number of proposed new lifts where it’s a link only and there’s no skiing. A bus really would be cheaper and you can run them after 4pm.

I’d not thought about the aspect of those slopes but I suspect you’re right. I’ve thought something much the same about the proposed Grimentz-Zinal link.

I think the link on Mont Joly is very comparable to the Vaudoise project mentioned here, I think the lift companies correctly identify the desire in one (large) market segment for resorts with huge headline distances but I think they’ve missed the altitude part of the equation. They could have 1000km of linked runs at the north pole but unless it was at 2800m or more then Crystal wouldn’t get any bookings.

I really do feel the avenues for attracting more business apart from spending 100 million on new lifts are being left entirely unexplored. In fact, a lot of them need to answer one simple question, what’s it going to do for the summer business? If the answer’s nothing then they need to go away & have another think IMHO.

 Signature & B&B L’Epicéa, Leysin, Switzerland

Posted: 26 January 2012 08:52 AM   [ # 4 ]  
Total Posts:  17
Joined  2005-07-28

I too have been visiting Les Contamines for many years, my family and I spend a significant amount of time there in both winter and summer. One of the attractions of the place is its relative isolation at the end of the valley that has allowed it to remain unspoilt and I’m afraid that this proposed link up with St Gervais will ruin a significant sector of the mountain for not much gain. The hordes that alpian refers to may well attempt to cross over from St Gervais/Megeve but I doubt that they will come down to the village in any great numbers that would justify the the benefit to local businesses. There may be a few of the mountain restaurants that will see an increase in numbers but not much else. Having said that I’m very mindful of the fact that people in the village depend for a living on keeping tourist numbers up and a few of the local shops & restaurants have been struggling. Its a fine balance that needs to be struck but they need to be careful that they don’t destroy the very thing that attracts people there in the first place. Ise is right, they also need to consider the negative impact to summer trade.
I’m sure there will be local opposition to the proposal and I’ll be watching developments closely.

[ Edited: 30 January 2012 06:47 AM by dokhanian]
Posted: 29 January 2012 10:59 PM   [ # 5 ]  
Total Posts:  1
Joined  2011-02-10

I too am a fan of Les Contamines and was skiing there this weekend. I was talking to a local guide with whom I often ski, who said that many of the locals oppose the project on a combination of grounds but primarily safety due to the very exposed nature of the area and the environmental impact. It appears that the local administration is quite supportive and many fear that commercial interests will win the day. Interestingly it is quicker to drive from St Gervais lift station to Les Contamines than it is to get to the top of the Mont Joly chair - the starting point of the proposed link. Perhaps a good shuttle bus is a more cost effective solution ?