First trip skiing in our motorhome and any advice would be really welcome

Bev Smith

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Oct 9, 2017
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Hello everyone, I am really new to this and would appreciate some advice. We retired this year and bought a motorhome and are now looking forward to a winter ski trip to Austria with the Tyrol ski pass.

Any advice where to stay would be great:

1. wild camping - are there options for this? and if so, where do you get water and empty waste? We have a gaslow system with an 11k and 8k tank, but aren't sure how long these will last when heating the van, is it better to find a campsite?

2. campsites - is it possible to use campsites without breaking the bank? It would be great to have facilities and EHU, but we can't afford to pay 20/30 euros a night.

3. is it better to stay lower down and get lifts up, to avoid getting snowed in and really cold temperatures?

We have done some summer trips so are used to using aires etc but have no idea how it works in the winter!

Thanks in advance
Bev
 
Sep 7, 2010
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Any advice where to stay would be great:

1. wild camping - are there options for this? and if so, where do you get water and empty waste? We have a gaslow system with an 11k and 8k tank, but aren't sure how long these will last when heating the van, is it better to find a campsite?

Not many wild camping areas in Austria AFAIK. Gas would last around 4 days I'd guess if no EHU
You don't say what make your van is - personally I'd use a site with EHU if it's your first winter ski camp.

2. campsites - is it possible to use campsites without breaking the bank? It would be great to have facilities and EHU, but we can't afford to pay 20/30 euros a night.

Austria camp sites are above your budget, especially once you have paid for EHU. BUT , the Austrian sites are especially good

3. is it better to stay lower down and get lifts up, to avoid getting snowed in and really cold temperatures?

The advantage of Austria is that the valley bottoms tend to be flat, with ski areas leading off, so the roads seldom get blocked.
I asked in St Anton if the Motorway would be open after it had snowed 1m overnight - the site manager smiled and said - of course!


Are you dead set on Austria?

France may be a better bet for either aires or sites (they don't charge EHU) - Have a look at motorhomeski.com - it has some good advice.

We stayed :
Camping Le Champ du Moulin***38 520 Venosc France:
http://www.champ-
du-moulin.com/fr/caravaneige.htm

Longitude: 6.119866
Latitude: 44.98596

It was a good intro to ski camping. But we are now sold on Austria as the sites knock France into a cocked hat for quality.

Morzine also has a good Aire down just by the lifts with WC open at the lift station.
 
Mar 3, 2013
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I second Champ du Moulin. We go at Easter, no snow on the roads, fab campsite, excellent facilities and great skiing in Les Deux Alpes.
 
Oct 29, 2009
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Is your van a properly winterised (essentially German/European) with double floor and all pipework enclosed, etc?

If not, the advice will be different in order to address the vulnerabilities.

Ian
 

Delboyarapaho

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Interested in replies you get too. I don't have first hand experience myself of winter trips in Europe, so here is a speculative suggestion you might look into. When we stayed near Zell am see last summer, we stayed at Sportcamp Woferlgut, which is in Bruck a couple of KM from Zell. The site is 4*, with excellent facilities including a spa but not cheap but my concern in doing what you suggest would be running out of Gas and being frozen in so you were unable to fill up. I recall this site offered a winter season deal on hook up and gas piped to the van for 1750 Euros. obviously you are unlikely to want to stay that long but they are looking for winter trade so it would be worth seeing what rate they would offer you. Zell is a goof resort and within driving distance of a number of others, with Bruck having a bus service into Zell and on a rail line to many other resorts. I would imagine the roads would be mostly clear but not when snow is falling. Worth a look. Good luck
 
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Bev Smith

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Thanks bladerunner, we have an Autotrail Tracker.

We aren't definitely set on Austria, it was the best value ski pass that's why we decided on that.

Thanks for the recommendation, I have another look at France.
 
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Bev Smith

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Thanks delboyarapaho, I will contact them and see what they can offer.
 
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Bev Smith

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Bigtwin, we have tank heaters and all the pipes are lagged but are underneath the van along with the waste tank which is insulated.
 

BreweryDave

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Did stay at a site earlier this year at Seefeld. Camp Alpin. They had gas piped to all the ehu points. No idea what the connection is but doubtless they can provide this. Not cheap but stunning.
 

finyar

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Hi There,
We have taken the van skiing every year for the last 5 and would really recommend it.

We like Alpe d'Heuz as the resort is high (1850m at base) and there is fab runs for all levels. The only difficulty is you have to handle 21 hairpins up and then back down.

There is an aire at the resort which is about 500m form the main lift area for approx €12 per night. There is no EHU but if you have a small genny and good solar you will be fine.

We have also went into the 3 valleys and stayed in both Val Thoren and Les Menuires. Both have aires, the one in Les Menuires has EHU as well.

We generally get about a week for a cylinder but it varies by van. The trick is to leave it on all the time but at a low level.

Hope this helps
Raymond
 
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Bev Smith

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Don't say that BreweryDave and Cranky, I am looking forward to this!!!!
 

haganap

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Ignore the foreign snobs ;);)

And not all "german" vans live up to what you expect. We have skied for years and previously with our kids. And although our current FRENCH A class rapido is excellent in the snow the previous Bessacar Adria and even our first CI all had their plus points in the winters. In fact I remember being parked next to my two friends with their 100k Burstners in sub -27 our adria stood up to it whilst their fare more superior German vans had issues.

In order to answer your question you would need to give more info? when you intend to go, can you ski etc.

We have also stayed at Champs de Moulin and it's quite nice but we would never commit to anywhere until we know the forecast to ensure best snow. We have stayed at Aires, sites and even lift parks. As said, motorhomeski is a good resource to look at with some great reviews.

With regards Austria, my advice and my own opinion which I am entitled to is STAY CLEAR.... shocking rip off campsites that would be banned in this country although if your idea of an alpine holiday is to sit on a campsite so close to your neighbour that you can sit and hear them pee, then Camping Hell in Austria might be the place for you!!! I like Italy but if snows good then you can't beat France but know where to go to ensure you get the most of it, head for sites close to slopes or decide if you want an aire. We went to a place called Pralognan le Vanoise one year. Loverly site, easy skiing and gorgeous little resort but again check snow conditions.
 
Feb 18, 2014
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We have done both Austria and France and in terms of costs its swings and roundabouts. Campsites in Austria are fantastic, real luxury and passes/ drinking/eating fuel a lot less than France. First year in Austria we were terrified of running out of gas in -15C and paid for it with a huge electric bill. Now we use combination and in 10 days use 1 1/2 - 2 tanks of gas - we have lpg and small amount of electric - often just to give heating a quick boost or charging phones. Austria's lpg network is growing and as most of the resorts are in the valley with frequent garages, lpg better available (use lpg.eu website to find locations) There are smaller resorts, but "wild camping" very limited, but more available than the big resorts. Good sites, Fugen, Solden, St Anton, Mayhofen, Seefeld. Quite a few resorts do allow day parking, but not overnight (Solden does have overnight if you are careful). I think the Tyrol pass includes Innsbruck and there are some stellplatz around there also. Would recommend Camperstop, Campercontact (online) and "All the Aires Mountains, from Vicarious. Overall Austria is fabulously set up for the ski experience, and like you, we are Austria through and through (going in February to Fieberbrunn). Final point, many of the campsites get very booked up, very early and you need to book now. We booked in July and Fieberbrunn was 80% full for the season, Solden needs to be booked by October/ november
 
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The first time we went was in a swift kontiki although it was not very cold, we had no problems with water etc.
 
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Feb 18, 2014
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The area on the German Austria border near garmisch has lots of small resorts covered by the Tyrol pass. There may be more opportunity to wild camp around these but also camp sites with shuttle buses are less expensive https://www.zugspitzarena.com/en. Filter on accommodation, then camping
I think the pass also covered garmisch area in Germany which does have areas for overnight parking / still plats and camping
 
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Hi,
We have skied with our Mh since 2004 and PVC Since 2010 and always in France, which as others have said if the snow its great, then super. However planning to get to italy this year as school hols will give us nearly two weeks at Christmas/new year (OH is a teacher so no choice but to go at school hols, unfortunately ).
We too has stopped at champ du moulin which was ok, but le griffre in samoens is nice as you have a great ski area only 5 mins from site via gondola. Have been there three times and snow minimal at site. Camping thecle in valloire is good, fab town and site is very reasonable (22euros a night but that's at Feb half term) great skiing,again been there on numerous occasions and there is an Aire further up valley only 1/2 miles and as per most resorts free bus. Due to PVC we've never tried aires, we've tried and tried to get get to a cold spot re pipes and inevitably hairdryer always comes out and has fixed issue ! Camping or grand tetras in les saisies was great , ski in ski out but unfortunately it has now closed , I think the lease ended anyways it was returned to the municipality, however there are two good aires, all of which we've stopped at. Really great place. We have also stopped lower down the valley at praz sur arly at camping le chanteloupe and that was very good too, just means you have to get main lift up each day. There's loads of great places out there to stay, hope you have a fab time, can't wait till we can get to go outside school hols!
For those who've been to camping Piemonte in livingo, can u tell mE is it a real faff going through verena and le schlera tunnels? Also do u have to pre book, not keen if snow not too good?
Hope this is of some help and thanks for any replies re italy , helen
 
Feb 27, 2015
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Hi guys
Skiing from a van can be fantastic
But you need to get a few things right before you start
If you plan on doing it just once don't
You need to spend some money on equipment
Wilding as such will be very hard work.
1st you are going for skiing
Choose a resort that's suitable for ALL of you who are skiing
Do you all ski?
Will someone spend more time site seeing than skiing
Will you need a ski school
Is cost a factor? Some countries are less expensive than others.

Wilding will be very hard, not impossible but tough.
Camp sites are expensive and quite often outside the town/resort
Aires are an in between some are less expensive than others usually in the heart of the reort
Some have electricity included in the price others you pay for a few hours at a time
Some don't have elctricity some let you run generators some don't.
You NEED GAS 24 hrs a day.

Not sure the size of Gaslow but you must have enough gas to last the trip that means you will probably need to refill whilst away that may mean a trip down the hill to get autogas FIND the nearest garage with gas BEFORE you go.


Oh as for hair pin bends.
Skiing by definition is almost alway at the top of a hill.
The roads are easy to drive except when the snow is actually falling.
YES you need winter tyres
Yes you need snow chains
Giz a shout if you have any particular questions
 

moggyg

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is it a real faff going through verena and le schlera tunnels? Also do u have to pre book, not keen if snow not too good?
Hope this is of some help and thanks for any replies re italy , helen
Hi

we did Livigno skiing a few years ago and came through the Schera tunnel in MoHo. Driving was no bother and only had a ten minute wait at tunnel till it was our turn to go. We had travelled up from Tuscany so not sure about the full route from UK but roads around Livingno were great. We only had an issue at Swiss border with weight but border guards were great and helped us remove a mountain of snow that had gathered on the roof. We booked into a hotel so sorry, can't comment on facilities but resort is excellent, friendly, not too many bits, and TAX FREE ! It is a very high resort so usually snow sure but it is very cold Jan. The aire as far as I remember is on the flat between to two main populated areas and a walking distance from town. There is a garage on opposite side of Valley selling gas.

Ciao
 
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Hi Bev Smith. I've been Skiing from my van for about ten years now. A lot of good information can be had here http://motorhomeski.com/ Even at low levels it can get very cold -10 -12c So it is very important to make sure the van is insulated. Avoid the school holidays. Great skiing to be had between about Jan 7 and Feb 15th and about March the 15th to the end of season.
If you ski for more than 10 days then look at the season ski passes early. A genny is a must and needs to be used every day to keep on top of the batteries the cold knacker's them.
Check out https://en.lessaisies.com/winter 429 euro's a season. Most of the special offers have to be bought before set dates The Grande Massif season pass needs to be bought by Dec 10th cost 515 euro's incl ski insurance. Les gets 396 euros for a season aire about 70 euros a week Hope this helps. "Clipper" Dennis
 
Sep 28, 2015
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We would recommend SOLL in Austria theres a free aire at the bottom of slopes with good ski good food everything nearby supermarket shops restaurants etc kitzbuhel only 25km there is also a camp site in soll but the electricity can be expensive in Austria
 
Feb 18, 2014
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you will need a good additional thermal screen cover wherever you go to reduce the condensation. Recommend getting hold of "All the Aires Mountains" from Vicarious, which lists all the different sites, but gives excellent tips regarding 'winterising" and care in the cold! I'm not sure if its still in print, and some of the actual aires/information may be slightly out of date, but cross reference that with other "aire sources
 
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Aires mountains is sadly no longer in print - Amazon quotes up to £900 for a copy!!IMG_6836.jpg
 
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La Plagne = park at Montalbert large car park with water flot blue slightly sloping but direct ski in and out possible.

Les Gets = car park for motorhomes bottom red run, toilets available at ticket office during night, payment for motorhomes is expected in winter but await untill local police stick notice on or ask for payment, receipt given, or go Marie office and purchase in advance. French seem not to pay and move on when police ask for day payment usually about 9;00 ish then come back later when they have gone.

Samoens = car park next to old skating rink opposite tourist office okay to park but NOT
Wednesday market day. I have alway parked in car park on the bridge next to Le Giffre camp site, stayed week no probs, local police came to ensure not a Romany traveller, no probs 100m ski lift.
Samoens 1600 parking through tunnel at top of road immediatly on the left.

Morillon = large car park, motorhomes in corner at end of car park, toilets available and water tap, this is opposite of ski lifts never had any probs.

Les Carroz = public parking adjacent to debutants area, opposite bus turning area, ski down to button lift then up to main lifts.


A flavour of some ski parking i have used, no hook up and stayed for week at a time
 

Smue

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We haven't seen in a MH but Livigno in the Italian alps, the king is quit cheap and loads of motorhomes, but the town is Tax free so food, booze and everything else is tax free and stunning
 
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