• France edition
 
French ski station to re-open slopes, in June!

French ski station to re-open slopes, in June!

Published: 29 May 2013 13:22 GMT+02:00
Updated: 29 May 2013 13:22 GMT+02:00

A combination of an icy winter and a chilly spring has meant that for the first time ever in the month of June, skiers will have the option of heading to the pistes in the French Pyrénées, French TV TF1 reported on Wednesday.

After recent cold weather, bosses at the ski station Porte Puymorens in the Pyrénées-Orientales region of the mountain range that divides France from Spain have taken the exceptional step to re-open the slopes this weekend after they had closed them at the end of the season in April.

Eric Charre, director of EPIC, the company that runs the station, told AFP that they wanted to “take advantage of all the snow that has not melted”.

The Pyrénées witnessed heavy snow falls throughout the winter that led to regular avalanche alerts being put in place.

At one point in the ski season, stations had to close because there was too much snow.

Spring in France, which forecasters say has been the coldest in 25 years in some parts of the country, has meant the snow, which would normally have melted away by this time of year, is still in abundance.

Charre said that slopes running between 1600m and 2500m in altitude “have as much snow as in winter”.

“From 2,100m upwards, everything is still pristine without any tracts of earth showing through. The snow is on average 70cm to 80cm thick and in some places there are still drifts of up to five metres deep,” he added.

Temperatures at the ski station hovered around 1°C this week.

In total, four pistes will be open to skiers on Saturday and Sunday from 8am to 1pm, after which the snow will become too slushy for skiing as temperatures rise.

If you are thinking of heading to the station for some summer skiing, however, you’ll need to get to Porte-Puymorens early, as only 600 skiers will be allowed on the limited slopes to avoid over-crowding.

Those who are not cheered by the prospect of skiing in June should not hold out for any real summer weather just yet, although there is hope the sun might make an appearance in France in July and August.

Ben McPartland (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
The French words you can't translate literally
Can you let me know where I can buy a "throat support"? Photo: Shutterstock

The French words you can't translate literally

The French language has a plethora of words that if you translated literally into English could cause a fair bit of confusion and hilarity for language learners. From "throat support" to "mouth fun" we've picked out some of the best. Let us know of any more. READ  

Air France pilots set for week-long strike
Air France pilots have warned of a major strike in September. Photo: Tab59/Flickr

Air France pilots set for week-long strike

More travel chaos could be on the way now that Air France pilots have said they will strike for at least a week in September over their concerns about a reorganization of the international carrier. READ  

Netflix to film French 'House of Cards'
Netflix is going to make a House of Cards-like political thriller in France. Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty/AFP

Netflix to film French 'House of Cards'

France’s gritty port city of Marseille will be the setting for a Netflix original series that will bear a strong resemblance to the streaming service’s massive hit "House of Cards". The news comes on the eve of Netflix’s arrival in France. READ  

Hollande: Assad is no anti-jihadist ally of West
Assad is no ally of the West says Hollande. Photo: AFP

Hollande: Assad is no anti-jihadist ally of West

President François Hollande declared on Thursday that Syrian ruler Bashar al-Assad is not a partner of the West in the battle against Islamist extremists in Syria and Iraq, but an ally of the jihadists. READ  

French minister wants easing of 35-hour week
Could France soon scrap its 35-hour week? Photo: Daniel Janin/AFP

French minister wants easing of 35-hour week

Could France soon ditch its sacred, but oft-ridiculed 35-hour work week? New Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron says he is in favour of at least making the rules more flexible. READ  

France's jobless rate hits new record high
France's jobless rate just keeps creeping up. Photo: AFP

France's jobless rate hits new record high

The number of people out of work in crisis-hit France hit a new high in July, official statistics published on Wednesday showed, in another blow for President Francois Hollande. READ  

'I love business': French PM woos employers
French PM Manuel Valls is applauded by employer's union chief Pierre Gattaz. Photo: Eric Piermont/AFP

'I love business': French PM woos employers

A day after naming a new reformist cabinet French PM Manuel Valls faced members of the country’s powerful employers' union, who gave him a standing ovation after telling them "I love business" and that France and Germany needed to stay close. READ  

IN IMAGES: Artists unveil mechanical dragon
A famous French arts troupe has unveiled its 'dragon'. Photo: Jean-Sebastian Evrard/AFP

IN IMAGES: Artists unveil mechanical dragon

A legendary French artistic collective has raised the curtain on its latest outlandish creation: a massive fire breathing mechanical dragon that is headed for China. See photos and video of the beast here. READ  

Ebola: Air France stops flights to Sierra Leone
Air France has suspended flights to Sierra Leone due to the Ebola outbreak.

Ebola: Air France stops flights to Sierra Leone

France's flagship airline Air France announced on Wednesday it was suspending flights to Sierra Leone from Thursday because of an Ebola outbreak that has killed at least 1,400 people in West Africa. READ  

Paris set to welcome four new tourist attractions
What is it? A spaceship? No it's an art-gallery. Photo: Louis Vuitton Foundation

Paris set to welcome four new tourist attractions

The Local takes a look at four Paris attractions that are set to open or be completed in the coming weeks. There's plenty for art lovers, shoppers and those with a good head for heights. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Ten things you need to know about France's economics whizzkid
International
VIDEO: Watch the top five street scams to avoid in Paris
Politics
Take a look at the bulging to-do list that awaits France's new government
Politics
Six questions for France after Hollande ousts rebels
International
Choosing schools in France: Do you go international or French?
Gallery
From kissing to bad-mouthing: Ten ways expats in France drive you mad
Culture
Ten things you need to know about the Liberation of Paris:
Travel
Watch this impressive time lapse video and you'll want to move to Paris
National
Veiled Muslim woman on a French beach prompts politician's angry rant
Travel
Forget Paris and Provence where are the least touristy areas of France?
Gallery
IN PICTURES: The battle to liberate Paris from the Nazis
National
What France means to you in just one tweet
National
15 French 'false friends' you need to watch out for
International
12 reasons to invest in Paris and seven not to
National
French hamlet 'Death to Jews' mulls name change
National
French tourist caught in Pompeii brothel romp
International
'Forget the Anglo-media's image of France, the reality is much different'
Culture
VIDEO: Francophile Robin Williams enjoyed poking fun at the French
Travel
Six reasons why France is the world's top tourist destination
International
Remembering the 'forgotten campaign' in the liberation of France
Gallery
VIDEO: French bucket list - The 12 best things to do in France
International
Do three French cities deserve to be in top 10 "World 's Most Unfriendly"?
Gallery
Don't make a faux pas! Ten things not to do when working in France
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se