Ski Clinics – Les Deux Alpes

Rod Frazer - BASS

Long Time Snowboarders Turning to Skiing

At 14 years old, whilst visiting my sister on her working ski season in the late 80’s, I was lucky enough to discover the relatively new sport of snowboarding. Back then a ski holiday was generally reserved for the well off. The mountain gear was skinny and retro and the off-piste was a play ground for the only the best skiers. Skis were long and thin, which made them a challenge to turn on piste and difficulty to use in the fresh off piste powder snow. As a result the holy grail of fresh powder remained untracked for days after a snowfall.

Snowboarding changed all this. Clothing was baggy and leaned more towards a skateboard style. The snowboards larger surface area made riding off piste accessible to almost anyone who could link a turn and their exaggerated side cut helped easily carve tighter turns on piste. Snowboarders were building their own jumps and with their twin tips, were doing tricks never seen by skiers. Terrain parks with purpose built freestyle zones and half-pipes started popping up. Basically snowboarding was cool and all the kids wanted to do it.

However over the past 25 years, the ski industry has reacted and evolved to the sport we see today. These days, even the most basic ski is shorter, wider and has a tighter turning circle or carving angle. Skis turn quicker and easier. Off piste skiing is much more achievable for a half decent skier and the back country requires carrying less equipment than with a bulk snowboard on your back. Terrain parks are no longer the exclusive domains of the adolescent baggy clad snowboarder. Now free style skiers are commonplace in the parks and actually have more variety of tricks due to having two skis.

The long and short of it, is that it is definitely cool to ski again. Actually, if I think about it, it has been cool for a long while now. As a longtime snowboarder, I have been in denial and resisting the urge to give it a go, since I was reluctant to head back to the nursery slope.

However, like so many similarly placed mid 40’s longterm snowboarders I have spoken to recently, the draw of a new challenge has finally convinced me to switch to two planks. Now I’m not totally new to skiing. In fact I first hit the dry ski slopes back in the mid 80’s and have even strapped them on periodically over the years. But I have never got to a confident stage with two independent skis, where I’m not in constant fear of wrapping my knee around my shoulder.

Ski Clinic – Les Deux Alpes

So after a number of weeks nervously sliding around the mountain and generally loosing more and more confidence, I finally took the plunge and signed up for my first lesson in over 20 years. This was a very small group lesson hosted by Rod Fraser from Bass (British Alpine Ski School) that turned out to be with just three people, plus the instructor. During the first afternoon, the weather limited us to going back to absolute basics on the lower slopes. However after years of bad technique, reverting to total basics was exactly what I needed.

Rod from Scotland, literally started off with the most basic snow plough turn but, with the help of some handy on snow video analysis, we advanced quickly through the various stages of turning all the way up to a simple carve buy the end of the first afternoon. For our second day we had perfect fresh snow conditions and beautiful sunshine. Here Rod was able to take us all over the mountain and helped us put into action all the basics we had learned the first day. This was a truly eureka session for me, as something totally clicked. No more burning thighs, gone was the fear and tension that has plagued my skiing over the years. In short one professionally led intensive ski clinic had done more for me in two afternoons, than years of self-teaching.

So thanks to Rod at Bass – Les Deux Alpes, I now have a totally new focus for my life in the Alps. I suspect I will still drag the snowboard out for those perfect powder days, but thanks to a short amount of professional lessons, I look forward to becoming a much more accomplished skier.


For anyone interested in joining one of these amazing clinics, Rod has some availability for next week.

Dianne Frazer – “We have one or two spaces left next week on three levels of Clinics – Complete Beginner, ‘almost Beginner’ (i.e. those already booked have done quite a few snowdome sessions, but usually those skiers are a bit taken aback by the open environment, so we will still be starting at very much an introductory level) and Intermediate Clinic (you know we work hard to ensure a good ‘fit’ – those booked on already are shaky rough parallel blue run skiers this time). For a change our Intermediate Clinic is mornings this week – please get in touch if you’d like more details or timings etc on any of the above. Maximum six in these groups.” 

To book another ski clinic with Rod, contact Dianne via the following email.

Rod & Dianne Frazer – British Alpine Ski School

or follow their Facebook page on – BASS FaceBook Page

Bass British Alpine Ski School

Chalet Freeride – Catered and self-catered ski and bike holidays, Les Deux Alpes


Bike Lodging Catered chalet – Marmotte Ride June 2016

Bike Lodging Catered and Self-catered chalet Les Deux Alpes/Alpe d’Huez.

Bike Lodging are pleased to announce that they are formally taking over the running of the Chalet Grand Rochail in Bourg d’Arud/Venosc and will be running great value catered and self-catered holidays for road cyclists and mountain bikers.

The chalet can officially take up to 14 people, however with other properties next door, has the potential of even larger groups. In fact the property has 14 bedroom and space for up to 34 people. Catering will be managed by our professional chef, who can offer a taylor made catering experience, including Bed and Breakfast, Half-Board as well as the option for a return from ride refuelling pasta buffet.

The region is particularly popular with road cyclists and the chalet sits in the valley close to the start of the climb to Alpe d’Hues at Bourg d’Oisans. Other popular rides include the Col du Glandon, and the Col du Galibier, with events such as La Marmotte, the Alpe d’HuZes and the Tour de France when it comes to town.

Mountain bikers find themselves just a couple hundred meters from the bottom of the Venosc downhill track and gondola link to Les Deux Alpes, which in the summer remains open until 20h. This lift gives you access to the huge Les Deux Alpes Bike Park and some of the best down hill tracks in the world.

We still have availability for the weekend of La Marmotte 2016

For more information about this chalet, or any other bike friendly properties, don’t hesitate to contact us at


Mountain of Hell Les Deux Alpes 2016

Registration opens today for the 2016 Mountain of Hell Mountain Bike in Les Deux Alpes

Mountain of Hell 2016

Registration for the 2016 Mountain of Hell enduro mountain bike event in Les Deux Alpes opened today. The event which sees amateurs racing side by side with professional riders, takes place over the first three days of July with the aim to qualifying for the main race on the Sunday. This starts at 3500m on the Glacier on the upper slopes of Les Deux Alpes, before racing for 25km with 2500metres of defending and finishes in the village of Venosc, below the main resort.

Find accommodation in Les Deux Alpes for this event via the following website

Bike Lodging – Les Deux Alpes

Les Deux Alpes – European Resort of the Year

In November 2015, Les Deux Alpes in France was voted European Resort of the Year, at the World Snow Awards ceremony

By Will Corder in Les Deux Alpes

Well, after a slow start across the Alps, the snow has arrived here in Les Deux Alpes we are now enjoying beautiful blue skies with perfect skiing conditions. So while you are searching for your winter ski holiday, it is worth remembering that in November 2015, Les Deux Alpes was voted European resort of the year at the World Snow Awards at the London Ski and Snowboard awards.

This award is a recognition of the fantastic variety and scale of skiing available in the resort. Although not as large as some of the interconnected resorts available across the Alps, the 220km of marked piste is more than enough for most holiday makers. If this is not enough, then included on your 6 day ski pass are 2 free days skiing in neighbouring resort Alpe d’huez, which can be reached either by a shuttle bus, or if you fancy doing it in style, but helicopter transfer.

One of the significant benefits of Les Deux alpes is the amount of easy skiing above 3000 meters, a domain that is usually reserved for the best skiers. Here even the newest of skiers get to experience that top of the world feeling and the best of the snow conditions. In the summer this area doubles as Europe’s largest skiable glacier and a world centre for freestyle skiing and snowboarding. During the winter the  Freestyle and terrain parks (slide zones) move down to more sheltered positions, dotted all over the resort and offer perfectly maintained kickers, rails, pipes, cross tracks and even an airbag to safely practice your jumps.


For the more adventurous, Les Deux Alpe backs onto La Grave, one of the last true ski wildernesses of the Alps, which offers north face skiing from 3600 meters on terrain which is left entirely for off piste and backcountry skiing and snowboarding. This area is only for expert skiers and snowboarders and it is advised that you only venture there with a guide and full avalanche kit such as transceivers, shovels and probes. For top quality ski guiding and free ride courses take a look at the British Alpine Ski School.

Since being taken over by the Compagnie des Alpes a few years ago, much has been spent on the resort infrastructure. Most noticeably are the vast amount of snow making facilities present to keep the resort running even on the leanest of snow years. During the early weeks of both the 2014/15 and this season, when snow was sparse through out the Alps, coach loads of tourists were being shipped in to Les Deux Alps, when other resorts had to remain closed.

Polar bear
The Polar Bear – Les Deux Alpes

Once your ski day is over, the party starts, first with the daily après ski piste party at the Pano Bar at 2600m, with live DJ sets from 15h – 17h. Then its down for more live music at one of the many popular bars in the resort such as the Polar Bear, or Smokie Joes who have live acres ski music and serve their own locally brewed beers. During the later evening Smithies Tavern is highly recommended before dancing into the small ours in L’Avalanche Club.

Not resting on the accolades bestowed in 2015, this year Les Deux Alpes has addressed it’s only former negative issue by building the Jandri 1 blue run, creating a much needed easy return to resort piste option. In addition in the coming years it has been decided that Les Dexu Alpes and Alpe d’hues will build a huge gondola system which will link the two resorts, resulting on one of the largest linked ski resorts in the world.

But for now, if you were keen to discover this world class resort and were looking accommodation option in the area here are a selection of options for you.

Catered of Self-catered chalet sleeps 14+
2 Bedroom (+ mezzanine) sleeps 7
2 Bedroom Chalet sleeps 5
Studio sleeps 2

Alternatively send us an enquiry to

Ski Chalets and Apartments Les Deux Alpes

Ski Chalets And Apartments Les Deux Alpes

The snow has arrived across the Alps.

So aside from getting you ‘Fatbike’ out, its time to start thinking about a winter ski holiday and what better location than Les Deux Alps. Many of our bike friendly properties double as ski chalet and apartments in the winter. This year Bike Lodging is managing and running a number of properties in and around Vensoc, a beautiful village with a cobbled pedestrianised centre,which is connected to Les Deux Alpes by high speed gondola.

Chalet Grand Rochail – Sleeps up to 14, 400 meters walk from the Venosc gondola. Available catered or self-catered.  Prices from €1500 self-catered in January or €400 with half-board catering per person per week.

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Chalet Les Ecrins – Beautiful new 6 bedroom chalet in La Danchere, with views over Les Deux Alpes. Prices from €1500 in January

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Chalet Chardon – 2 bedroom chalet sleeps 5. Recently renovated to a very high standard, now with wood burning stove. Perfect for a small family or a group of friends.  Weekly rental from €600

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Apartment Les Cristallieres – 2 bedrooms, plus a mezzanine and large balcony with views over the Ecrins National Park. Central Venosc. Sleeps 6 comfortably, but up to 8. Weekly rental from €550

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Studio Bourg/Vensoc – Cosy studio built from a vaulted cave in a beautiful stone building surrounded by pine forest and mountain stream. 5 minutes drive from the Venosc Gondola. Weekly rental from €350

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For information about these or any other properties in the Alps and Pyrenees, then please contact me on

Bike Lodging take on their own catered bike & ski hotel/chalet

During 2016, Bike Lodging will be running their own bike and ski hotel/chalet in Venosc, close to Les Deux Alpes, Le Bourg d’Oisans and Alpe d’Huez.

This property which comfortably sleeps group of up to 14 is perfect for road cyclists wishing to explore the roads around Alpe d’Huez, the Col du Glandon and the Col de La Croix du Fer, as well as for mountain bikers riding in the neighbouring mountain resort of Alpe d’Huez.

This former hotel has been converted into a more homely chalet style, with a large communal living room and dinning area. It retains the former bar area, which mikes a nice place to socialise after a tough day on the slopes or bike. The chalet comes with a modern, industrial style kitchen, which can be used by guests when rented self-catered, or looked after by our catering staff and host for catered holidays.

The hotel actually has 14 bedrooms, but is officially limited to just 14 guest thanks to some French red tape. Most of these bedrooms have south facing balconies. This however makes it a great property for groups of friends who might prefer to have their own room. There is also a large secure bike and ski storage rooms.

During the summer meals may be taken on the terrace in front of the building. There is a municipal open air swimming pool  a short walk away (open from mid June till end of August).

Cycling from Venosc – The property is just 14km from Le Bourg d’Oisans and the start of the climb to Alpe d’Huez. Its also a great starting position to ride to Col du Galibier, the Col du Glandon and the Col du Le Croix du Fer. The chalet will also be idea for groups looking to take part in local events such as La Marmotte, Alpe d’Huzes, La Vaujany and the Alpe d’Huez triathlon. Your local chalet host will also provide you with a cycling guide book for the region and be happy to point out some of the lesser known, but beautiful cycling routes in the area.

During late June, July and August, bikes make be taken on the Venosc gondola to Les Dexu Alpes, providing a short cut to the Col du Galibier and the Sarenne Valley.

Road cycling routes in Oisans

The chalet is located right on the popular cycling route to La Berarde. This is a must do ride into the heart of the Ecrins National Park. The ride along a quiet mountain road takes you along the beautiful Veneon river valley and passes a number of beautiful huge waterfalls and picturesque alpine villages.

Le Bourg d’Oisans – La Berarde

Mountain Biking from Venosc – The chalet sits just a couple of hundred meters form the bottom of the Venosc mountain biker downhill track and the gondola link back to Les Deux Alpes. The Les Deux Alpes Bike Park will be open from 18th June until the 27th August 2016. The bike park features 91km of specially designed mountain bike trails located between 3200meters and 720meters. It has 18 separate downhill tracks and 6 specially adapted lifts to carry you bike. The resort is designed with a wide variety of slopes of all levels and features, table top jumps, north short, pump tracks and a slope style area. The Venosc gondola which gives you access to the resort of Les Deux Alpes is open from 8am until 20h.

Les Deux Alpes Bike Park

This chalet will be hosted by Will Corder, who previously ran the successful Ecrins Lodge, just down the road and gained extremely favourable reviews on Tripadvisor for his catering and general personality and professionalism running the chalet.

Will Corder – Ecrins Lodge on Trip Advisor

This property may be rented self-catered, bed and breakfast as well as with half-board catering and a full chalet hosting service.

La Marmotte

Next summer over the weekend of La Marmotte, Bike Lodging will be running a long weekend catered holiday package for  guests who can only make it out to the region for a few days. Most hotels in the region ask for a minimum of seven nights stays for these peak weeks. However we appreciate that many of those taking part in La Marmotte, prefer not to spend days cycling in the region prior to the even, when they should be resting. Many prefer to fly in at there last minute with fresh legs for the race and then leave soon after. So we will be running a catered chalet service, with an early breakfast the morning of the event as well as helping with logistics of getting back from the even at the end of the day. Please enquire for details.

Winter skiing in Les Deux Alpes

This winter we will also be taking bookings for self-catered and catered ski holidays for skiing trips to Les Deux Alpes. Located just a couple of hundred meters form the Venosc gondola linked to the ski resort of Les Deux Alpes, this is a great location for a budget ski trip to the Alpes.

10% off ski rental in Les Deux Alpes

The property has just four comunal bath/shower rooms, and no en-suite bedrooms.

Bike events 2016 Oisans, Bourg d’Oisans, Alpe d’Huez and Les Deux Alpes

2016 dates and links to road cycling and mountain bike events around the Oisans, Le Bourg d’Oisans, Alpe d’Huez and Les Deux Alpes, including the Megavalanche and La Marmotte

Image from

2016 Cycling Events

Alpe d’Huzes 2nd June – Bourg d’Oisans – Alpe d’Huez – Dutch charity cycling event
BRO Brevet de Randonneur de l’Oisans 19 June Allemont – La Berarde – Sportive with a choice of 4 courses
La Vaujany 26 June – Verney – Vaujany – Grand Trophee Cycling Event 174km
Prix Des Rousses – 29 June Bourg d’Oisans – Vaujany via Alpe d’Huez Grand Trophee Cycling Event 40km
La Marmotte 2nd July – Le Bourg d’Oisans – Alpe d’Huez – Granfondo Cycling Event 174km
La Grimpee de l’Alpe d’Huez 3rd July – Bourg d’Oisans – Alpe d’Huez 13km Time trial
EDF Alpe d’Huez Triathlons 24th – 29th July – Lac Verney – Alpe d’Huez
L’Alpe d’Auris 6th August – Le Bourg d’Oisans – Alpe d’Huez – Auris en Oisans Cyclosportive 50km
Les 2 Alpes Granfondo – 20th/21st August – 166km

Oisans Col Series July – August – Various local hill climbs reserved for cyclists.
Montee d’Oz – July/August every wednesday – Time trial hill climb Oz Village – Oz Resort
Montee Vers l’Alpe d’Huez – July/August every Thursday – Time trial hill climb Le Bourg d’Oisans – Alpe d’Huez

2016 Mountain Bike Events

Week end Classic’Oz derby et VTT – 2nd/3rd April – Oz en Oisans
Sarenne Snow Bike – 16th April – Alpe d’Huez – Un-timed downhill event on slopes of Alpe d’Huez
Faster than you – 23 April – Les Deux Alpes – Venosc – Downhill event on the Venosc DH track
MTB Opening Party – 17th June – Les Deux Alpes – Free Raid Classic
Mountain of Hell – 1st-3rd July Les Deux Alpes – Downhill mountain bike event
Megavalanche – 4th-10th July – Alpe d’Huez – UCC Downhill mountain bike evert
IXS European Downhill Cup 22nd-24th July – Les Deux Alpes – Crankworx Mountain bike weekend
Coupe de France de VTT – 29th-31st July – Oz en Oisans – Downhill, Cross country & Trail
Auris Bike Contest – 4th August – Auris en Oisans – Timed Downhill MTB event
Tour de Plateaux d’Empais – 21st August – La Grave
Untra Raid de la Meije – 17th/18th September – La Grave- Multi event MTB weekend

Images thanks to

Information and images thanks to

Impressive storms hit Alpe d’Huez days before the Tour de France comes to the region.

Just two days before the Tour de France is set to pass through the valley and four days before the final mountain stage on Alpe d’Huez, a huge storm has broken the 6 week long heatwave causing multiple mudslides and closed many roads in the area. Local authorities are already out trying to clear the roads. Its yet to be seen if there has been any serious damage to the Tour de France route.

    Mud slides between Bourg d'Oisans and Venosc close the road in 2 places - Photo by Daan Goos
Mud slides between Bourg d’Oisans and Venosc close the road in 2 places – Photo by Daan Goos

In April, damage to the Tunnel du Chambon and fear of a huge mudslide from the hill side above forced the closure of the tunnel and road between Bourg d’Oisans and the Col du Lautaret/Col du Galibier. The road remains closed today and has resulted in the change of the route for the final mountain stage of the Tour de France which will now pass over the Col de la Croix du Fer, rather than the Col du Galibier on the way to Alpe d’Huez this Saturday. All work on the tunnel has stopped until nature takes control and this part of the mountain finally collapses. Hopefully this storm will trigger the predicted rock slide, so that work on repairing the tunnel and road can start again.

Update – Wednesday 22nd July. The sun is shining again and the clean up is underway for the many landslides in the area. The road to Venosc and La Berarde is open again, but there are set of traffic lights in place as local authorities clear the roads of debris.

Mudslide blocking the road to Venosc and La Gerarde
Road cyclist picks his way around the mudslide on his way to La Berarde




8 July 2015 update to the Tunnel du Chambon and the impact on the Tour de France.

8 July 2015 update to the Tunnel du Chambon and the impact on the Tour de France.

The latest on the Tunnel du Chambon is that work on the tunnel has totally stopped, since they expect the side of the mountain above to fall at any moment. Small sections of rock have already fallen and some people are camped up high on the far side of the reservoir hoping to witness the collapse of the mountain. Access to the path on the far side is strictly closed and the ferry service has been stopped due to the fear of waves that would be caused by the rockfall. Local residence below the dam have been warned to keep doors and windows closed in the event of warning sirens, in the unlikely event that a wave could flow over the dam and flood villages downstream. A helicopter service has been put in place available to locals trapped on the far side in the case of emergencies.

The area of unstable rock is about25 – 30 meters deep and 600k to 1 million cubic metres. Since April it had been moving between 5 to 10 cm per day. More recently it been moving at 12 cm to 15 cm per day.  Since 2nd July a  section of 100k cubic tonnes has been moving at 25 cm per day which is looking like the first area to slide. Small sections of the mountainside have already started to slip into the reservoir.

As an impact of this road closure Stage 20 of the Tour de France on the 25th July between Modane and Alpe d’Huez no longer passes over the Col du Galibier, but via the Col de la Croix du Fer.

Tour du Plateau d'Emparis - Bike Oisans
Tour du Plateau d’Emparis – Bike Oisans

Many people booked into accommodation in La Grave or Briancon hoping to see the Tour de France on Alpe d’Huez, have been asking about the possibility to bypass the tunnel my mountain path or track. As mentioned before, then path along the other side of the reservoir is closed and this is being strictly enforced by local police. The quickest road route is via the Col du Galibier and the Col de la Croix du Fer. However there is a very long, but beautiful option above the tunnel via the Plateau de Emparis. This track is unpaved, generally used by walkers and mountain bikers and will take a long time, but is spectacular. Details of this route can be found via the following link under Tour du Plateau d’Emparis – itineraire 4.

Chalet sleeps 5 available for Alpe d’Huez Tour de France week

2 bedroom chalet available for 3rd week of Tour de France
Chalet available 3rd week of Tour de France

Due to another cancellation for €800/wk, we now have available, this beautiful two bedroom chalet in Bourg d’Arud, just along the valley from Le Bourg d’Oisans and the start of the climb to Alpe d’Huez. Totally renovated in 2014, the chalet has a modern kitchen and charming living room, a double and a triple bedroom with one IMG_0885modern bathroom. It also have a large sunny terrace with views over the Ecrins National Park. The chalet is ideal for a small family or a group of friends. It is a short walk from an open air swimming pool, tennis courts, tree top adventure trail, bars and restaurants, small campsite shop with freshly baked bread and the gondola link to the mountain resort of Les Deux Alpes with summer skiing and the vast network of mountain bike trails.

Tour de France 2015
Tour de France 2015

However the position is of particular interest to road cyclists thanks to the proximity to the foot of the Alpe d’Huez and various other famous climbs. The property has just become available again from the 19th – 26th, thanks to a recent cancellation. During this week, it will be possible to ride to three different location to watch the Tour de France on three different stages. In locations such as the Col du Morte, Allemont, the Col du Glandon, the Col de la Croix du Fer and of course the Alpe d’Huez.

The price for these seven nights self-catering would be just €800.

For more information, or to make a booking, contact us on