The snow ploughs were grooming the pistes in Serre Chevalier at 8pm last night as French prime minister Edouard Philippe announced that the country must 'close all non-essential locations'...
In the Cocoon bar in Serre Che, there was instant confusion (but drinks on the house) at the announcement just after 8pm that the country must 'close all non-essential locations, notably cafes, restaurants, cinemas, nightclubs and shops' from midnight. Did this mean ski resorts? Only 24 hours ago, Serre Chevalier had announced it would be staying open until the official end of the season over four weeks away in April.
But an hour later it was confirmed. Ski resorts across France are closed as from today15th March.
So it was off to the 1420 bar for one last drink before all the bars closed as well at midnight. End of season party? It was like an end of the world party, pumping music and people rammed together dancing manically. A metre apart? Pfft. If anyone had coronavirus last night, then we've all got it now.
The timing of the announcement was not the best. It was Saturday night and many had just arrived in France for their week's skiing or snowboarding. Suddenly there are no lifts, no bars, no restaurants (but plenty of wine and loo paper in the supermarkets so, phew, could be worse).
Meanwhile, this morning the lifts are shut but the pistes are perfectly groomed. What to do? Take the dogs up for a ski tour, of course.
Search the Site
MOUNTAIN VIEWS: Weather Reports & Webcam
Views from the mountain WebCam along with weather reports and conditions...more
Another day, another great ski tour in Japan. It's so easy to fall into a rhythm every day of skinning up, skiing down, soaking in an onsen, having a beer, eating traditional Japanese food. And, then, waking up to repeat it all over again...more
HOW TO MASSIVELY IMPROVE YOUR SKI TOURING EXPERIENCE. From light gear to kick turning, the 9 top tips for ski tourers. The ski touring techniques and ski touring gear you need for better ski touring...more
CRISIS POINT FOR THE SKI INDUSTRY'S FUTURE. Will we ski this season? Will UK seasonaires be able to work in Europe? Will skiing once more be the sport of kings - and the rich? The future is a bit of a white out for the ski industry. Here's what SBIT, Seasonal Businesses in Travel say...more
SKI TOURING & CROSS COUNTRY SKIING WHEN RESORTS ARE CLOSED. From 15th December French ski resorts will be open but no lifts so ski touring and cross country / ski de fond et le ski de randonnée could be an option as long as they are not banned as people could well end up in hospital putting a strain on resources...more
The cycling season for me would normally start in late March but 8 weeks of confinement meant I could only cycle within a one km radius of home, so other strategies were required to get cycling fit...more