To all skiers, snowboarders, cross country skiers and non skiers!
Since 2007 nearly 400people have enjoyed a total of 19 week long ski trips. People of all ages and abilities, from expert skiers to complete beginners, have taken part. At first, we went to hostels in Switzerland and then catered chalets in the French Alps as they offer good value, sociable space for the group to mix and result in holidays where GOC membership forms good friendships from across the UK and beyond.
In 2020 two trips were run and we had a great time in chalets in Les Arcs 2000 .
It was a pleasure for GOC to return in 2022 to the ski slopes in Samoens after a two-year absence as a result of Covid. For many of the party, it was also their first time overseas since before the pandemic.
It is more now problematic to find a catered chalet in the Alps, the traditional GOC ski holiday accommodation. However, an excellent hotel with an option to self cater was found in the historic town of Samoens. The hotel has a spa and swimming pool. This is part of the extensive Grand Massif ski area, close to the Swiss border. We enjoyed it there so much that we returned to the same hotel in January 2023.This year 11 people including one non skier gathered in the resort having travelled from all parts of Britain. 9 stayed in the hotel and two stayed in a nearby apartment. See events news for more information.
GOC skiers are generally experienced and able to ski on their own, in pairs or as part of a larger group. Ski lessons are always available. People canstart and finish their skiing day at a variety of times to suit energy levels and the size of the previous night’s bar bill.
This year we were blessed with a lot of sunshine. People in the UK who have not visited the Alps in winter find this hard to believe, but plentiful sunscreen needed to be applied and hats worn sitting outside at lunchtime, not to keep warm but to stop those of us more follically challenged burning. Those who took hotel evening meals were treated to the highest standard of French cooking and combined with top quality wine, meant that falling asleep in the comfortable rooms with silence outside was serenely easy. The Grand Massif ski area was surprisingly extensive with even the busiest skiers able to find new runs each day and two of the higher ability party members found black runs which satisfied their demand for challenge. For the non skier and those seek to rest their legs, Samoens offered a range of activities including winter snow shoeing and a weekly farmers’ market with the largest selection of cheese you could imagine.
We organize the ski group in a different way from walking groups. Ian Horsburgh is the contact on the website and deals with general communication. David Roberts manages the Groups web page.
When skiing /boarding, there is no leader to take you round the slopes. We divide into groups according to ability and interest. Everybody must have appropriate clothing and equipment. It is essential that everyone has adequate insurance (and to include Covid cancellations) and to be relevant to the type of ski-ing undertaken(off piste for example).
Skiers, snowboarders, cross country skiers and non-skiers are all welcome, as with the type of skiing/boarding. Details of the insurance cover will be required beforehand and must be kept with you on the slopes.
The next trip will be Saturday January 27th 2024 for a week, staying in a good hotel with a spa in a small village in the Austrian Tyrol, linked to the huge Skicircus area (see website). The holiday is also suitable for non-skiers with easy rail access to Kitzbuhel and beyond.
You need to book your own holiday either through the ski holiday company we are using or independently (see GOC members events page for more details) There are fights from airports in the U.K. to Salzburg and ,transfers by bus take an hour
So far 13 people have booked (including 4 non-skiers)and hope you can join us. You MUST be a GOC member to come on the trip.