We present our TOP 6 longest slopes. Slopes where you can ski for a long time. Skiing for so long that you forget everything else: the lifts, taking off your skis, waiting... In the end, we want you to feel like you're on an endless run, taking you from one end of our area to the other, with no transition other than the continuous movement of your skis.

It's a real technical challenge. The lift operators have to deal with the existing terrain. The mountains impose their own conditions: ascents, descents, cliffs, protected areas, etc. Designing pistes several kilometres long, without interruption, without impassable flat areas, without cliffs, etc. is a real challenge.

Enough talk, we're now going to give you our selection, a real best of of the longest ski descents here in the 3 Vallées!

There's a slight difference, however: we're going to be presenting you with "descents": these are combinations of several runs, which follow on from each other without interruption (without lifts, in other words).

Des crêtes jusqu’au village - Méribel

Let's start with the longest of the long itineraries. Start from the ridges between Val Thorens and Méribel. Head for the Col de la Chambre, one of the highest points on this ridge.

You'll climb from an altitude of 2850 metres to 1450 metres at the lowest point. Don't worry, though, as we've marked this run "blue": in this case, it's a series of blue runs! This route is therefore accessible to all skiers.

Warm up well: knees, wrists... this descent will be 11 km long! That's the equivalent of crossing the whole of Paris. It's a lot more fun to ski from Vincennes to Boulogne-Billancourt, isn't it?

Take the plunge: the descent begins on a blue track before arriving on a wide piste, lost in a valley and surrounded by peaks and ridges - immersion guaranteed! To continue, you'll take the "Mures rouges" piste, which winds under the ski lift of the same name, before linking up with the next piste, "Ours". This takes you gradually towards civilisation. Initially a wide, open valley, it then becomes a country walk, surrounded by cembros pines.

In spring, it's in places like this that you can see one of the iconic inhabitants of our Alpine valleys: the marmot!

The end of the route is magnificent, with a stopover in the Tuéda nature park. You'll continue via "La Truite": between gigantic fir trees and views of the mythical Saulire, before arriving in the village of Méribel.

Access: Meet at the Col de la Chambre. Access via Côte Brune (Méribel side) or 3 Vallées VT5, 3 Vallées VT4, Bruyères 2 or Mont de la Chambre (Val Thorens side).

La “tout-en-haut-tout-en-bas” - Méribel

And here's a tougher version of the previous itinerary. You'll start at the highest point in the resort of Méribel (2952 metres altitude) and work your way down to Méribel centre (1450 metres).

This route is on the "red" side: it has a few technical difficulties, particularly at the start with the "Combe du Vallon" piste, which is a little steep in a high-mountain environment (understand: it will be windy and cold, which can contribute to the feeling of difficulty for even the most modest skiers).

You're on the Gébroulaz glacier, just below the 3,000 metre mark. The wind is freezing your insides out, but you ignore it as your eyes are riveted on the sumptuous valley stretching out before you, at once peaceful and intimidating.

You set off. The legendary Combe du Vallon trail will give you a hard time: it will be difficult to do it in one go, without stopping. But if you feel like it, stop! You'll have a magnificent view of the Tuéda nature park. This is where you go.

Also known as the "Arolles", the cembros pines that surround you bear witness to a hundred years of skiing (truth be told: the oldest of them are a hundred years old).

As you descend, you will return to the same itinerary as on the previous route: Mures rouges, Ours, then Truite.

Access: Meet at the top of the Mont-Vallon lift, the highest point in the Méribel area.

La panoramic- Les Menuires & Saint-Martin-de-Belleville

Why is it called "La Panoramique"? Well, go to the very top of the "Roc 2" or "Granges" lift. Yes, this is the ridge that marks the boundary between the Vallée des Belleville (Val Thorens, Les Menuires and Saint-Martin-de-Belleville) and the Vallée de Méribel.

This place is called the "Roc des 3 Marches". Once you're up there, you'll be stunned: a 360° panorama opens up to you, revealing a breathtaking view of the 3 Valleys. Mont-Blanc itself graces you with its presence... Can you find it?

Enough about geography, we're here to ski after all. This route is on the "blue" side. Quite logically, it is made up entirely of blue runs: lovers of gentle slopes, this is for you. The "La panoramique" route is 8.8km long and has a negative vertical drop of 1,314 metres. Take the Grand Lac trail, a wide, gently sloping trail that is generally sunny and pleasant.

You'll pass beneath the peaks of Beca and Gros Tougne, before taking a long schuss, which will carry you to "Pélozet", the next track. Past the alpine ambience of the ridges, you are now in a mountain pasture, draped in its winter dress: smooth, vast and open. Walk past the Saint Martin Express cabin and, without stopping, continue on the Biolley piste.

This will take you gently, as you would expect, above Saint-Martin-de-Belleville, which you will reach via the last piste on this itinerary, called "Village".

Access: Meet at the Col des 3 Marches. From Méribel, access via Plan des Mains then Bouquetin. On the Menuires / Saint-Martin-de-Belleville side, go via Granges or Roc 2.

Des cimes jusqu’au lac - Val Thorens

Those who are used to Val Thorens will be able to guess the route straight away. And for the others: this real "derby", on the red side, takes off from the final summit of the 3 Vallées ski area: Cime Caron. You'll descend to Plan de l'Eau, the resort's last landmark, via a 7.2km-long route with a 1,375-metre descent. Are you ready? On your marks... and get set... and on your boots!

At the top of Cime Caron, you'll see it all. To be more precise, you can have fun spotting the Alpine peaks: Mont Blanc, Grande Casse, Barre des Ecrins, Meije, Mont Pourri... Have you found any other peaks?

To start this itinerary on the edge of the Val Thorens ski area, take the "Col de l'Audzin" run: this challenging red will take you a little further away from the ski area, with its 4km of continuous descent.

As you pass the col, you leave the Lou valley and enter the Combe de Caron. We hope you haven't exhausted your energy by being too aggressive in the first few bends, because you're about to take a number of turns on a technical run with a steep gradient. The latter will require you to draw on your stamina!

This is followed by a short respite on a blue run: "Gentiane". When you've finished skirting the Caron gondola and the torrent of the same name, you'll come to a crossroads of pistes, where there's only one way out on skis: take the Boulevard Cumin, the only piste left to take you down.

A blue run called "Boulevard Cumin" will take you peacefully down to the Plan de l'Eau, the lowest point in the Val Thorens ski area.

Access: The only possible access to this route is via the Cime Caron cabin. This in turn is accessible from the Caron cabin.

La grandiose - Courchevel

This red route takes in the Saulire, Verdons, Plantrey, Brigues and Amoureux trails. With a length of 7.8 km and a vertical drop of 1,440 metres, it's sure to take in the scenery! To start with, try to spot Mont-Blanc (easy level) or Grande Casse (difficult level).

Then set off from one of Courchevel's legendary peaks: Saulire! Peaking at an altitude of 2,740 metres, this itinerary begins "steep and steep" with the eponymous red piste: Saulire. Although steep, this piste is still wide and playful: with its undulating terrain, it generally appeals to skiers looking for thrills and speed.

You will then come to a green trail called "Verdons". It's the perfect place to rest your legs. And just as well, you're entering a beautiful wooded area, where you can also admire the scenery. This trail takes you all the way to Courchevel 1850, where you then have to pass under the bridge to the left of the Chenus gondola departure point.

Did you think that once you reached Courchevel 1850, this route was finished? Well, you'd better have some energy left, because there's still one more descent to the bottom of the resort, where Courchevel-Le Praz is located. To reach this final section, you then continue on "Brigues", which takes you up a steep slope through the spruce trees. This last effort should allow you to get the final feel for the route. You'll then arrive at your destination: Courchevel-Le Praz, an authentic Savoyard village well worth a visit.

Access: To reach Saulire, take the Saulire or Vizelle lift (Courchevel side) or Saulire Express 1 then 2 (Méribel side).

La sauvage - Courchevel

And to finish off this collection of long, steep itineraries in the 3 Valleys, here's a route that will take you to the very edge of Courchevel's ski area. This route is on the "red" side. But as we have nothing to hide from you, we might as well admit it: it's a little red. While the wild, alpine atmosphere of this itinerary may intimidate some, the runs on it are two reds and three blues. So it's a route that's accessible to anyone who knows how to ski a red run. This itinerary will take you from an altitude of 2,540 metres down to 1,600 metres (a difference in altitude of 940 metres). You'll cover 6.862 km of descent!

To get you in the mood, head for the Col de Chanrossa. On the way up by chairlift (via Chanrossa or Pyramides + Roc Merlet), you'll soon realise that you're heading into the wildest part of the Vanoise Park. In fact, this is where ski touring enthusiasts go to enjoy nature, away from the crowds of skiers.

When you get off the chairlift, you'll be delighted to find a pass that's virtually untouched, with only two chairlifts serving it. Take a moment to admire the panorama: Roc Merlet close by, Pointe Emilienne and La Saulire a little further on. Then head off in the direction of Le Signal, on your right as you face the slope, taking the red Roc Merlet piste.

This rather steep and hilly track will reveal the mountain known as "Pyramide" on your left. This will allow you to continue on the blue trail of the same name. This rather playful track will give your thighs a rest from the long turns.

After this rest, you'll return to a red run called "Grandes bosses". Slightly steeper but not too difficult, you can get your thighs back into shape before heading for "Indiens", then "Marquis" to finish at the bottom of Courchevel Moriond.

These last two runs will take you through the Yepa canyon and the 'Indian' piste: while this pretty canyon is natural, the 'Indian' atmosphere is really something we've created to amuse budding young skiers!

Access: via the Chanrossa chairlift (which can be reached via the Aiguille du Fruit on the Courchevel side, or via the Creux and Lac Creux runs from Méribel). Or via the Pyramides and Roc Merlet chairlifts (you'll be riding over the route you're about to take, by the way).

So you're all set to ski for a long time without any mechanical interruptions! We've taken great pleasure in designing and combining these routes. Naturally, we hope you'll take great pleasure in following them, one after the other!

And since you've come this far, here's one last subject we think is important: safety. In terms of "natural" hazards, the lift company does its best to protect skiers on the slopes.

However, you need to look after your own safety in two respects:

  • Other skiers: keep to a speed where you are in control. Don't rely on others to avoid you.

  • Off-piste: if you decide to leave the marked itineraries, you must ensure your own safety. For the record, it's not just a state of mind. Off-piste safety means being equipped with an avalanche beacon, shovel and probe, and being regularly trained in the use of this equipment.

Well, that's all there is to it! Now it's your turn to ski, and ski hard for miles on end!
From the bottom of our hearts, we wish you great skiing in the 3 Vallées ski area!