The first time I ever went skiing on snow was in the mid-80s when I joined a group of friends during the second week of April in the French resort of Les Arcs.
It snowed nearly every night, and the sun shone brightly in a clear blue sky every day. The snow conditions were fantastic and in my naivety, I assumed skiing was always like this.
Of course, as seasoned skiers and snowboarders are all too aware, conditions can vary considerably, but I have been Spring skiing on many occasions and have never been disappointed.
On piste conditions at this time of year can be created by late-season snowfalls, snow cannons, or the spring – or corn – snow cover that forms when loose snow on the piste freezes together at night, and then gradually thaws again as the sun warms up during the day.
It’s extremely pleasurable skiing and snowboarding in warm, bright sunshine and I have often opted to ski in a fleece rather than a ski jacket, but the warmer daytime temperature does mean the snow can start getting a bit slushy towards the end of the afternoon. Therefore, it’s worth setting your alarm for an early start and you’ll be rewarded with a great experience.
Whether you are looking for another quick ski or snowboard fix before the end of the season, or just prefer this time of year for your mountain jaunt, it is worth choosing a resort with a history of reliable late-season snow cover.
Resorts that set a late season closing date do so because they are confident of keeping the majority of their lifts open to mid-April at least. Many of these resorts are usually at high altitudes and have access to a glacier, but this does not always have to be the case.
Here is a selection of European resorts to consider for late-season skiing and snowboarding, but there are plenty of others to choose from and you can find details on the Skiline website (skiline.co.uk). The knowledgeable experts at Ski Line can help point you in the right direction and to give you some idea of what’s on offer.
Val d’isere/Tignes, France
These two resorts that make up the Espace Killy ski area are known for their high-altitude skiing and many lifts stay open until late April, after which skiing and snowboarding is still available until 5 May 2024 on the Grande Motte Glacier.
The high altitude of Les 2 Alpes (1,650m – 3,421m) and its glacier enables the resort to offer skiing and snowboarding up until 28 April 2024. Lift passes and accommodation rates are also often discounted at this stage of the season.
There is also a Beef Roast Rail Jam on the 20 April, a freestyle competition for skiers and snowboarders in the Cool Zone of the Les 2 Alpes snowpark. Teams of two compete for various prizes including a trophy for the ‘raddest trick of the day’. You might even be tempted to take part yourself as registration is free.
This extensive high-altitude ski and snowboard area in the Tyrolean Alps has become well known for reliable late season snow conditions and this season the closing date has been set at 1 May 2024.
Ischgl hosts several end-of-season events including its world-famous Top of the Mountain Closing Concert. This season the open-air concert on 30 April, starting at 1pm features The Black Eyed Peas and entrance is free with a valid lift pass.
Music lovers can enjoy a variety of performers taking part in the Tanzcafé Arlberg Music Festival at venues in St Anton, Lech Lech Zürs, and Stuben from 31 March to 14 April. The organisers claim whether you’re a jazz enthusiast, a funk diva, or a techno fan, there’s something for every musical palate.
If you just want to ski and snowboard the lifts will be staying open until 21 April 2024.
With its high-altitude terrain and extensive off-piste options, Verbier’s north-facing slopes and high elevation contribute to maintaining good snow conditions into late spring. Closing date this season is 21 April 2024.
Spring skiing in available in Saas-Fee/Saastal region located between 1,800m and 3,600m until 21 April 2024. Skiers and snowboarders will find 150km of different pistes surrounded by spectacular scenery.
Famous for its views of the Matterhorn, Zermatt claims to be the only European resort to offer skiing and snowboarding nearly year-round thanks to pistes on the Theodul Glacier. Elsewhere, other lifts will still be open, subject to snow conditions, until 21 April 2024.
The resort, which links with Zermatt in Switzerland, is known for its high-altitude skiing and snowboarding. The resort’s winter season officially ends on 5 May 2024… but then the lifts will re-open again on the following day as skiing and snowboarding in the Cervino Ski Paradise area is now available throughout the year.
*You will find more information on these resorts in the country sections of the Ski Line website.
Still Plenty Of Time For Late Season Skiing And Snowboarding: A Summary
Spring skiing in the European Alps offers a unique experience characterized by sunny days, late-season snowfalls, and vibrant events. Late April and early May see resorts like Val d’Isere/Tignes, Les 2 Alpes, Ischgl, St Anton, Verbier, Saas Fee, Zermatt, and Cervinia welcoming skiers and snowboarders with extended lift operations and discounted rates. From the high-altitude slopes of the Espace Killy to the glacier skiing of Zermatt and Cervinia, there’s a plethora of options for late-season adventures. Additionally, resorts host events like the Top of the Mountain Closing Concert in Ischgl and the Tanzcafé Arlberg Music Festival in St Anton, offering entertainment beyond the slopes. With reliable snow conditions and scenic surroundings, these destinations promise memorable spring skiing experiences for enthusiasts seeking one last mountain getaway before the season’s end.
Chat with our experts
For more tips when booking your late season ski or snowboard holiday, call our expert sales team on:020 8313 3999