Europe has some great snowboarding resorts and les Arcs in France is one of our favourites. Les Arcs actually claims to have invented snowboarding. The resort was famous in the 1970’s and ‘80s for being a Mecca of ‘nouveau’ ski sports such as mono-ski. Les Arcs is also home to many of the first mass market ski movies, most notably the early 80’s film ‘Apocalypse Snow’ after which the snowpark in Les Arcs is named. Lets have a look at some 80’s snowboarding footage from the movie ‘Apocalypse Snow’:
The Apocalypse snowpark is located between Arcs 1600 and 1800 and is served by a snowboarder-friendly J-bar lift. For years, this has been one of the most advanced parks in the Alps and on par with the main park at Avoriaz. Apocalypse Parc is fitted out with tricks and treats for all snowboarding ability levels and they’re all colour coded from the standard green for easiest to black for most difficult.
Other attractions include a boardercross course on the Plan Vert slope. Around ten pistes are also left ungroomed for freeriding pleasure with the security of knowing you’re on a patrolled and avalanche-tested piste.
Here’s some video from Apocalypse Snowpark
Freeriders & Freestylers
If there’s fresh snow on the ground, you can be guaranteed an amazing day snowboarding through trees in Peisey or above 1600, off cornices in 2000, or just straightlining anything all day long. The area off the Trans Arc cablecar gives access to some great off-piste riding.
Freestylers should head to Peisey, 2000 and high above 1800. The hits on an area known as Les Clocherets are also worth a visit. If youre into manmade jumps, then you should head to the Apocalypse Park which has green, red or black runs.
If you like to stick to the piste then Les Arcs should tick all the boxes. Les Arcs is blessed with amazingly well-groomed wide open pistes which are generally crowd-free most of the time. Les Arcs’ piste lends itself perfectly for big slashing turns. The Mont Blanc piste on 1600 is great for intermediate carvers and the Belette and Myrtille runs are good for advanced riders who can handle snowboarding at speed.
Finally, here’s some cool video footage of snowboarding in and around Les Arcs