Airport Transfers to Ski Resorts

Ski-Lifts Blog


There is growing chatter that we could be about to head into an El Nino year and this is particularly prevalent on ski forums, where people hypothesise about what that might mean for the winter ahead.

El Nino and La Nina

An El Nino event (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Ni%C3%B1o) is basically caused by warm ocean waters forming in the Pacific, which then sets of a chain of events which can cause significant changes to global weather patterns. Obviously the more noticeable effects occur the closer you are to the Pacific and then gradually reduce the further away you get, but there are plenty of theories that there can be some noticeable effects on the ski season.

In North America the effects should be felt more strongly than in Europe, with the general theory that the Sierra Nevada and Southern Rockies receive more favourable ski conditions than average, but the mountains further north have a warmer and drier season, which is clearly not good.

El Nino effects in North America

In Europe, which is much further from the source, it seems that the impact is closely related to the strength of the El Nino event. Looking back at previous El Nino winters it seems that a weak or moderate El Nino may have little discernible impact on the winter season and if anything can perhaps lead to a milder or drier winter. Whereas a strong El Nino can lead to a much colder winter, because the chain of events triggered by a strong event can lead to a weak Polar Vortex, allowing cold winds from Russia to reach Europe and therefore lead to more arctic conditions here.

For example, if you look at the last two El Nino winters, you can see very different results. The winter of 2006/07 was a weak El Nino and that season was one of the worst for a long time in terms of snow cover across the Alps. However the more recent event in 2009/10 was a strong El Nino and that winter saw some of the coldest weather in the Alps for several decades.

Depending on who you listen too, there are differing opinions on what this El Ninjo may bring, if it does indeed form, but best guesses range between a 50 and 80% chance of an extreme El Nino forming. So if that proves to be the case, you may well want to be packing an extra layer of thermals for this winter!

But with no guarantees yet about whether this year will be an El Nino, or even what that might mean for European ski resorts if it is, maybe it’s best to look at other ways of forecasting the weather ahead.

This summer has so far been very wet in the Alps – certainly not ideal conditions for mountain biking. However last time we had a similarly wet summer (2007), the following winter was a very good snow winter.

We’re also heading towards that time of year where you hear rumours circulating around resort about what might be ahead, with some of our favourites always appearing in the Autumn as farmers tales of thick onion skins, or hairy goats legs (both of which apparently point towards a cold or snowy winter in case you are wondering what we are on about).

Hairy Goats Legs!

So, for now, we’ll keep our ears to the ground and if we hear anything more we'll let you know - whether that's modern science, or local farming facts!

The Ski-Lifts Team

Posted: 8/14/2014 12:17:54 PM by Richard Smith | with 0 comments




Here at Ski-Lifts we don’t try to hide the fact that we love Morzine – it’s where it all started for us after all and we know a lot about the place.

Most people who are familiar with the town, will know it for skiing or snowboarding, or for downhill mountain biking in the summer months and it goes without saying that it is one of the best destinations in the world for both of those. But one thing that puzzles us is why more people don’t take advantage of the town and what it has to offer, outside of the two peak seasons?

For one thing, if you were to travel here outside of these peak periods, you can get cheaper flights and much cheaper accommodation, as demand is lower. Yet the weather can still be fantastic especially through May, June and September and if you are here to enjoy the mountains you don’t have to go far to pretty much experience them all to yourself. Plus there are always a few shops, restaurants and bars open all year, because unlike many other ski resorts, Morzine is a village where people live – not a purpose built resort.

Obviously one down side could be that the lifts aren’t open on the mountain, so to get up there and enjoy them then you’ve got to use your own steam – but that’s all part of the fun and sense of achievement! Plus, pretty much any other activity on offer through the main summer season that doesn’t require the lifts, is still available in these quieter times and can actually be better.

Road cycling in Morzine

For example, if you are into road biking, then getting out and tackling some the famous climbs, such as the Col de Joux Plane (one of the most famous climbs of the Tour De France), or the climbs up to Avoriaz, can actually be more enjoyable outside of the main summer months as the temperatures are more comfortable and the roads have less traffic.

In the last couple of years Morzine has become well known as a base for triathlon training because it has something to offer for all three disciplines. The cycling we’ve mentioned, there’s plenty of nice trails to get out for a run and for the swimming there is an Olympic size pool and Lake Montriond. It’s why some of the biggest names in world triathlon are now using this as their base.

And if you prefer your biking of the off-road variety, then you can take on the numerous cross-country trails around and not have to contend with other riders getting in your way.

Finally, you can’t forget one of the oldest ways to enjoy the mountains, which is getting out and hiking – whether it’s in the forest on the lower slopes, or up in the high mountain pastures, the spring and end of summer months are arguably the most pleasant time to really get out there and experience it.

Hiking in Morzine

It goes without saying of course, that should you take our advice and come and visit Morzine outside of the peak seasons, we’re still running our airport transfers, so it couldn’t be easier.

The Ski-Lifts Team

Posted: 7/15/2014 9:39:21 AM by Richard Smith | with 0 comments



 Montreux Jazz Festival

Forget Glastonbury and the UK festival scene this summer and revisit Europe, where you’ll find some of the best music festivals are just a stone’s throw away.

Take in the cultural surroundings of a new destination and catch some incredible music. This summer there are some great names to be seen and some great festivals to get to.

In recent year’s music festivals in the mountains have been on the rise, such as Snowbombing in Mayrhofen and Rock The Pistes in the Portes Du Soleil, meaning when you’re on your skiing or boarding adventure you can team it with the fun and sounds of a music festival.

Snow + beer+ music = what more could you want? Exactly…but when it comes to the UK festival scene, you play weather roulette in the hope that you won’t be knee deep in mud. So, why not team your festival agenda with a bit of sightseeing this summer?

Venture forth to some new ground over in Europe for some more (let’s face it) reliable weather, and a taste of something different, here’s a few we think are worth a look…

Montreux Jazz Festival  4th-19th July 2014.
Montreux Jazz Festival Transfers
In its 48th year and clearly they are doing something right, there’s something for everyone here, so don’t be fooled by the name. Perfectly placed on the edge of Lake Geneva and surrounded by mountains, Montreux delivers on both scenery and serious line-ups. With 6 stages covering various genres and plenty of free music also available this is an event not to be missed. The festival runs for 2 weeks and you can purchase tickets for particular artists or areas, starting at around £40.

Who’s playing? Stevie Wonder, Pharrell, Lykke Li, Damon Albarn, Ed Sheeran, Outcast, Norma Jean Martine, Thomas Dutronc.

How do I get there? Transfers from Geneva Airport to Montreux take around one hour and are €38 per person (when 8 of you are travelling), you can book online directly with Ski-Lifts.


 Primavera, Barcelona 28th-31st May 2014.
Primavera Sound
The now legendary festival is known for its super friendly crowds and warm weather- this is surely a great excuse to go and see a fantastic city and squeeze in your summer music hit.  Set by the sea just 20 minutes from the city centre you’re likely to see most of the up and coming artists of the year, and some that will no doubt be big next year too.
Tickets are a steal in comparison to what some of the UK festivals ask, starting at just €195.

Who’s Playing? Arcade Fire, Pixies, Haim, SBTRKT, Foals, the National, Jagwa Ma, Hot Chip DJ set, Nine Inch Nails.

How do I get there? Located in the heart of Barcelona there is public transport running from the airport to the festival sight frequently. Or contact us and we will happily arrange private transfers for you.

 
BIG Festival in Biarritz will appeal to the surfers out there.
Transfers to the Big Festival in Biarritz
Running from the 16th to the 20th of July and only in its 6th year, this festival is just starting out, but here you can spend the day in the famous Biarritz surf and then head into the festival to catch some big headliners as well as some more local bands. The party goes on till late, with club nights open till dawn - however you might need to go out wearing your wetsuit to catch the morning surf! Some days are free but to catch the bigger headliners tickets are just €49.

Who’s Playing? Placebo, Metronomy, Flight Facilities, Cassius, Claptone.

How do I get there? Book you airport transfers from Biarritz airport with our sister company www.Sea-Lifts.com.

 
The Garden Festival – Croatia. 2nd-9th July.
The Garden Festival
This boutique festival stands out in Croatia’s growing independent festival scene, set in Garden Tisno, this festival has got more of an electronic feel to it than its competitors and some really special additions. With a tiki bar, outdoor night club as well as a beach stage this festival is something special. But the highlights not to be missed are its Boat Party’s. The Garden Festival allows you to perfectly combine the best elements of a festival and your summer holiday in one breathtaking place.
Tickets start at £120 for a week’s pass.

Who’s playing? Eats Everything, Greg Wilson, Session Victim, Ben UFO, Midland, Jimmy B.

How do I get there? Book your flight to land in Split, coach transfers to local bus stations are available via the website, or contact us and we will arrange private transfers for you.


Posted: 5/12/2014 10:12:08 AM by Richard Smith | with 0 comments




Want to know which country has the most ski visitors each year?
Or maybe the most lifts?
Or want to know how long you'd have to ski for continuously to get into the Guinness Book of Records?

Well take a look at the graphis below for some fun facts.....





















This worldwide skiing infographic was produced by Sainsbury's Travel

Posted: 1/9/2014 10:35:37 AM by Richard Smith | with 0 comments




Many of you will have seen pictures of the early snow we’ve had across the alps in the last couple of weeks which are certainly raising excitement levels amongst the ski and snowboard communities. However, for those wanting to make the most of this early snowfall, there are a host of resorts that are either already open or due to open shortly.
Ski-Lifts takes a look at some of the best ski resorts for an early season getaway:
 
France
 
Les Deux Alpes
 Les Deux Alpes boasts the largest skiable glacier in Europe and perhaps unsurprisingly attracts a steady stream of skiers and snowboarders in both winter and summer. The glacier opened briefly for half term from late October to early November and is now set to reopen on 30th November. The snowpark that resides on the glacier in summer months is normally relocated to the slopes above mid-station for the winter season.
Transfer time from Grenoble: 2 hours
 
Tignes
 The Grande Motte Glacier in Tignes is another popular location for summer skiing and snowboarding. The glacier opened for the winter on Saturday, October 12th whilst the Espace Killy is due to open fully on December 21st 2013. Transfers to Tignes from Bourg St Maurice train station are the easiest way of getting to the resort, but there are also an assortment of journeys offered from airports.
Transfer times: Geneva (2 hrs 50 mins) or Bourg St Maurice (50 mins)
 
Switzerland
 
Saas Fee
 The ski area of Saas-Fee opened on 1st November and currently has 6 lifts running which give access to a good selection of pistes. In addition, there is an excellent snow park with a half-pipe, large and small kicker lines and a variety of rails for freestyle enthusiasts. Swiss sports shops are currently running their "Swiss ski tests" which is a perfect opportunity to try out the new season’s equipment. Ski Lifts offers airport transfers to Saas Fee from several Swiss airports including Geneva and Zurich.
Transfer times: Geneva (2 hrs 50 mins) and Zurich (3 hrs 25 mins)
 
Diablerets
 The Glacier 3000 ski area at Les Diablerets opened its doors for snowsports on 26th October and will now remain open until May. The Glacier’s ski area includes 30 km of ski runs at altitudes from 1350 to 3000 m including the 7km long Olden ski run.
Transfer times: Sion (1hr) and Geneva (1 hr 35 mins)
 
Verbier
 The official opening weekend of the Verbier winter season is scheduled for 30th November 2013. However, certain lifts are open at the weekends throughout November. These are likely to include the Chable-Verbier and the Medran 1 gondolas, the Lac de Vaux 1 chairlift and the Funitel that gives access to the Ruinettes sector. For transfers to Verbier from Geneva and Zurich contact the Ski Lifts team.
Transfer times: Geneva (2hrs) and Zurich (3 hrs 10 mins)
 
Austria
 
Hintertux
 The closest airport to Hintertux is Salzburg whilst Ski Lifts also provide transfers from Munich. The Hintertux glacier offers around a dozen lifts, 28km of piste and a terrain park year-round. The remainder of the ski area is due to open on Dec 7th 2013.
Transfer times: Salzburg (2 hrs 25 mins) and Munich (2 hrs 30 mins)


The Ski-Lifts Team

Posted: 11/12/2013 3:52:34 PM by Richard Smith | with 0 comments