Chamonix Off-Piste Course

Explore the best off-piste in Chamonix with Chamex mountain guides & ski instructors

Chamonix is the perfect place to make the transition from skiing on-piste to skiing off-piste and experience the full-on  freeride fun. With your Chamex ski guide, you'll improve your backcountry skiing technique and receive an introduction to the skills needed to negotiate all-mountain terrain.

Assessment of your off-piste level

The first day of the off piste ski course is dedicated to the assessment of the overall level and abilities of the group. There is plenty of nice and easy off-piste terrain in Chamonix, such as at Le Tour, Flegere or Brevent, where your guide can see how you get on. This will help your mountain guide to plan the right itinerary for your week ahead. As safety is our main priority at Chamex, you will do a basic avalanche awareness training course on the first day. 

Improving your off-piste technique

The rest of this freeride course is dedicated to improving your off-piste skiing and to pushing your limits. You will have the advantage of being looked after and taught by our UIAGM qualified mountain ski guides and ENSA qualified ski instructors. This will ensure an excellent quality of ski instruction coupled with access to all of the incredible Chamonix off-piste terrain, you'll explore everything that the valley had to offer and ski beautiful couloirs, forests and glaciers. 

Skiing with confidence

During this course we will use video analysis to help you to focus on areas where you need to improve your skiing. Our goal is for you to leave this course with a sense of achievement as well as memories of a great backcountry ski week. We aim for you to confidently ski some of the epic backcountry descents for which Chamonix is famous, such as Petit Envers du Plan on the Vallee Blanche or Pas de Chèvre at Les Grands Montets.

Your ski guide will tailor the programme to suit weather, snow conditions and the overall level of the group. Each day your ski guide will choose an area offering the best off-piste skiing at the moment. The focus of this week is to improve your backcountry ski technique and teach you the basics of avalanche awareness.

We will use video analysis to help you to:
Find the weak spots in your ski technique and focus your training there Set goals in what you want to achieve and direct your training there

Off-Piste Progression

Throughout the course you'll be developing various skills that will make you a stronger and more confident off-piste skier, such as how to:

parallel turn on steep slopes tackle moguls and uneven terrain control your turns amongst trees keep your balance in deep snow increase your strength and stability on your skis

Once you've completed your introduction to off-piste skiing, you'll have opened up a whole new world of possibilities! Continue to develop your skills and become a stronger off-piste skier on our Off-Piste Performance Course or our Chamonix Steep Skiing Course.

 

Off-Piste Safety

Above all, mountain safety is our highest priority, which is why as well as imparting skiing techniques we also teach you how to ski off-piste safely. Avalanche awareness and transceiver search are essential to your skill set as a confident off-piste skier, especially when skiing the Chamonix backcountry routes that can take you far away from the patrolled ski areas. Our instructors are all qualified UIAGM mountain guides with all the knowledge and experience needed to teach you the basic mountain safety techniques.

 

Level Requirements

You don’t need to have previous off piste skiing experience to join the course, that's what we're here to teach you! However, you will have to be:

A competent piste skier Able to ski black runs and moguls without problems Physically fit enough to ski a pisted run without stopping

If you are not sure if this course is for you, view our ‘Are you Ready’ questionnaire in the FURTHER INFO section of this page. You can also contact us on info@chamex.com and we will be happy to help.

 

Off-Piste in Chamonix

Chamonix has incredibly varied terrain, making it the perfect place to learn to ski off-piste. Over the 5 days of this course you will learn how to handle different conditions and types of snow. Much of your training will take place at Les Grands Montets, Chamonix's biggest ski area, where you will find everything from glaciers to powder bowls.

Chamonix's unique location on the border of three countries means that you can experience skiing the best of the French, Swiss and Italian Alps; depending on conditions we may take you over the border for a taste of off-piste skiing in one of our neighbouring resorts such as Verbier or Courmayeur.

By the end of the course you should be confident enough to ski the Vallee Blanche, one of the most famous off-piste itineraries in the world, as well as some of the other classic Chamonix off-piste descents.