Have you ever heard experienced skiers talk about off-piste skiing?
Perhaps you’ve seen people on your last ski holiday looking thrilled after a day off-piste. Or maybe you have a friend who won’t stop raving about it. Whatever your situation, it’s important you understand exactly what off-piste skiing involves before you give it a go yourself.
First and foremost, you need to understand what does piste mean in skiing. A piste is a marked run down a mountain slope where snow has been smoothed and flattened to make it ideal for skiers and snowboarders alike. Each slope will be graded by colour to signify the level of experience it is suitable for – blue or green for beginner, red for intermediate, black for expert. So when you’re on-piste you’ll know exactly where you’re going, how difficult the terrain is, and there won’t be any deep snow to get stuck in.
So off-piste, as you might have guessed, means the opposite. There are no markers, no grading, and the snow will be much more like powder – fresh and untouched. You’ll also be far from the busy crowds of the main slopes and you can take your time to enjoy the beauty and serenity of the surroundings.
Sounds idyllic, right? And it can be, but there’s more you need to know before you abandon the familiarity of the piste.