French Heli Adventure
7 nights, La Rosiere, France
Really enjoyed this week. Turned out better than I feared it might. Can't say it was good value for money: £2500 for 7 nights chalet board (1 evening without dinner but excellent food, unlimited wine & beer, homemade cakes & biscuits for afternoon tea), 6 days guiding, 3 heli drops; but I booked because I really wanted to ski Ruitor glacier, couldn't find anyone else who wanted to and hadn't heli-skied for 15 years.
IWas marketed as Silver and no guarantee of doing Ruitor glacier (it would depend on the skiing standard and wishes of the group; the holiday providers - Pook Heli Lodge - had other recommendations. The weather was not good most of the week .
However, the group turned out to be mainly Gold, very keen to do the Ruitor and other challenging skiing, willing to pay extra to increase the overall value of the helicopter use and willing to skin to access other great off-piste descents - skinning had not been planned as part of the holiday and the holiday providers are not ski tourers.
What really made this holiday was the guide - Pierre Liotard. The Ski Club had insisted - contrary to the wishes of the holiday providers - that the Club choose the guide and he was brilliant. Also, the guide insisted that he choose the ski terrain and use of helicopter - in consultation with the group and taking into account our ability, of course - rather than allow the holiday providers to choose.
It sounds like I'm knocking the holiday providers: I don't mean to. The Lodges are lovely & the food was among the best I've had on skiing holidays. Although none of us drank a lot, it was nice to know that we didn't have to think about the cost of wine with dinner and we didn't have to wait until dinner to be offered a drink. Coffee / tea after dinner was also free and on the staff's night off, as we'd had a big lunch, we were allowed to stay in and help ourselves to a snack - very accommodating of them.
Make it Purple Plus Heli Ski Touring and cheaper. Same guide.