La Molina Masella Ski Resort

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La Molina - Masella (Alp 2500) ski resort, Spain
La Molina - Masella (Alp 2500) ski resort, Spain
Masella side of the 2537m La Tosa, summit.
Masella side of the 2537m La Tosa, summit.
Masella base area has a delightful combination of bars, restaurants, sun, ski lifts & slopes
Masella base area has a delightful combination of bars, restaurants, sun, ski lifts & slopes
Below La Tosa summit looking down in to Masella ski resort
Below La Tosa summit looking down in to Masella ski resort
The main base at La Molina with La Tosa & its great terrain in background.
The main base at La Molina with La Tosa & its great terrain in background.
The lengthy gondola connecting La Molina to Masella allows occupants to scope out freeride options off the summit
The lengthy gondola connecting La Molina to Masella allows occupants to scope out freeride options off the summit
High alpine terrain at Alp 2500 includes easy cruisers & double black diamond runs
High alpine terrain at Alp 2500 includes easy cruisers & double black diamond runs
Lower down, long tree lined runs like
Lower down, long tree lined runs like 'Vertical' on Masella lead to the base areas.
Restaurants all have sun-drenched outdoor dining in forest like this at the La Molina gondola base
Restaurants all have sun-drenched outdoor dining in forest like this at the La Molina gondola base
Alpine on-mountain dining is limited to a handful of diverse eateries above the tree line.
Alpine on-mountain dining is limited to a handful of diverse eateries above the tree line.
Lunchtime anchovies, olives & crusty tomato bread reminds one that you are in Spain
Lunchtime anchovies, olives & crusty tomato bread reminds one that you are in Spain
The Torrent zone at La Molina is fabulous for progressing beginners & lower intermediates
The Torrent zone at La Molina is fabulous for progressing beginners & lower intermediates
Masella ski resort
Masella ski resort's Tosa surface tows access intermediate piste & extreme terrain
The superb Isards run below the fun double black Extrema & Pista Fonda at Alp 2500
The superb Isards run below the fun double black Extrema & Pista Fonda at Alp 2500
La Molina Masella summit in snowy early season conditions reveals the off-piste freeride possibilities
La Molina Masella summit in snowy early season conditions reveals the off-piste freeride possibilities
Powder hounds territory on north facing bowls above Masella
Powder hounds territory on north facing bowls above Masella
Masella is our pick of the resorts for après ski fun
Masella is our pick of the resorts for après ski fun
Spanish style après ski drinks & snacks
Spanish style après ski drinks & snacks
La Molina & Masella have convenient slopeside accommodations available
La Molina & Masella have convenient slopeside accommodations available
No powder, no problem .......... smile & ski La Molina Masella in the Spanish Pyrenees
No powder, no problem .......... smile & ski La Molina Masella in the Spanish Pyrenees

La Molina Masella Ski Resort

Readers Ratings

La Molina Masella

La Molina Masella3/54
La Molina Masella3 out of 5 based on 4 reviews
  • Recommend
    50%
  • Would Revisit
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Eskimo Freeride Cat Skiing Tours

Nearby Ski Resorts

Baqueira Beret
Espot

     Alp 2500 Ski Trail Map
  • Alp 2500 Ski Trail Map
  • Vertical (m)
    1,600m - 2,537m (935m)
  • Average Snow Fall
    u/k
  • Lifts (33)
    1 Gondola
    13 Chairlifts
  • Opening Dates & Times
    La Molina
    Early Dec to late April
    9:00am to 5:00pm

    Masella
    Early Nov to late April
    9:00am to 5:00pm
  • Terrain Summary
    Runs - 124km
    Masella - 53km, La Molina - 71km
    Longest run - 5km+
    Advanced - 13%
    Intermediate - 36%
    Beginner - 51%
  • Lift Pass Price
    Day Ticket 20/21
    La Molina only
    Adult - €42
    Child - €31.50
    Child u/6yr - €5

    Masella only
    Adult - €45
    Child - €35
    Child u/6yr - €5

    Alp 2500
    Valid at La Molina & Masella
    Adult - €48
    Child - €38
    Child u/6yr - €7
    La Molina Ski Trail Map
  • La Molina Ski Trail Map
    Masella Ski Trail Map
  • Masella Ski Trail Map

La Molina Masella (Alp 2500) Ski Resort Spain

The ski resorts of La Molina & Masella combine to form an amazing skiing area in the Pyrenees of Spain called Alp 2500. The summit of the humorously named, but fabulous, La Tosa, forms the hub of the combined resort. From its peak, a range of surprisingly interesting piste trails & freeride terrain including steep bowls & couloirs run down through a hefty 935m of skiable vertical of alpine & forest to the base areas.

Masella is traditionally one of the earliest opening ski resorts in Spain - in 2018 the resort opened top to bottom at the start of November. Sounds like the sort of place the Powderhounds need to check out, so we did! The experience was intriguing - alot like skiing in southern USA, Australia or New Zealand, but with more confusing multilingual menus & great tasting anchovies!

Pros & Cons for La Molina - Masella Ski Resort

Pros

  • High elevation base areas & generally north-aspect terrain.
  • Efficient lift system serving a solid skiable vertical.
  • Fabulous range of piste trails for all levels in both alpine & forested environments.
  • Diverse off-piste & freeride terrain from mellow to extreme.
  • Lively après ski particularly in a few Masella venues.
  • Reasonable value lift pass if snow conditions are good.
  • Useful snow making system allows for most piste trails to be open regardless of natural snow conditions.
  • Ample free parking close to the lifts for day trippers across at least 7 different base locations.

Cons

  • Snow is feast or famine in the Pyrenees & can severely limit off-piste skiing & snowboarding - check forecasts & recent snow before booking.
  • Base areas at both La Molina & Masella can be incredibly busy, particularly on weekends.

Pro or Con (depending on your perspective!)

  • Lower slopes are often only open due to snow-making.
  • Can be reached by train from central Barcelona, but the journey is relatively slow for the distance travelled!
  • La Molina village is in parts convenient to the lifts & slopes but feels quite dated & soulless so may or may not appeal to visitors.
  • Accommodation at the resorts can be limited on weekends but is generally available in the valleys.

Skiing & Snowboarding, Lift & Terrain

The combined Alp 2500 skiing & snowboarding terrain has some outstanding attributes ………. if there is snow! North-aspect, a skiable vertical of 935m, efficient lift system & 124km of trails are fabulous stats for any ski resort. Totally different to skiing in the Alps, the high snow line & expansive views of a dry, brown countryside are indicative of a more southern snow destination. But it is possible to find as much steepness, trail length & terrain diversity as anyone could desire to deliver a fine skiing & snowboarding experience. Both ski area’s have quite good novice & beginner zones, but they are heaving with people when the sun is out. La Molina & Masella provide quite different ski experiences, and for the extra few €, we recommend getting the combination Alp 2500 lift pass.

See the Alp 2500 - La Molina Masella ski trail map.

Even though supposedly smaller in size, Masella is the pick for us. It has truly excellent all-round piste terrain combining pitch, roll, shelter & is fully north-aspect for better snow quality, plus has the better steep alpine terrain from the 2,537m La Tosa summit. The marked double black runs are quite pitchy & get seriously bumped. The local lift pass provides superb value if the snow is fresh.

See the Masella ski trail map.

La Molina’s piste trails are more sedate in nature, have less pitch, less length & overall, less interest. With some decent snow on the ground there would be worthy tree-skiing in several sectors, but alas it is not a true powder hounds' destination.

See the La Molina ski trail map.

Snow & Weather

The Pyrenees can be a feast & famine ski region. The feasts come often, with cold dry champagne powder the likes of which would be normally seen in Utah, Japan, or the high Alps. La Molina Masella is case in point. But after the feast, long periods of above freezing temperatures & warm cloudless days can (& do more regularly) occur, impacting snow quality. The sight of a high snow line & dry brown valleys can be alarming as you drive up to a ski resort wearing only a t-shirt! Snow making technology has offset most of the issues on-piste, but if looking to ski or board the region's amazing off-piste terrain in powder, it is best to leave your travel options to the Pyrenees flexible & go when the combination of snow base & forecast align. Or just do as most ordinary folk do, travel there when you can, make the most of what you have & enjoy sliding on whatever type of snow is available. The good news is at Alp 2500, that probably means all the piste trails will be open, it just might not be the dry, cold & squeaky snow you were hoping for. And remember this when sliding down some sun-softened slush in the Pyrenees, it could be raining like it did in Japan most of January 2020! Even the snowiest places have warming temperatures these days. Just be prepared for when it turns cold again.....

Where is La Molina & Masella Spain?

The La Molina - Masella ski resort is in the Spanish Pyrenees near the French border only 2hr drive north of Barcelona. Andorra is only around 70km to the west of the resort, but driving time is 1-1½hr. Toulouse in France is 190km to the north or 2½ - 3hr drive.

Gateway airports are either Barcelona (BCN) or Toulouse (TLS). The airport is a short 15min taxi ride (or a longer, more convoluted trip via train/bus) into central Barcelona & its main L’Hospitalet de Llobregat train station. La Molina is served by a train station in the valley via the R3 line from central Barcelona. Travel time is around 3 - 3½hr. Buses meet the train in the town just below the station & shuttle passengers up to the resort, taking around 10min.

The quickest way to get there from Barcelona airport is via private transfer or rental car. Note that rental cars in Spain do not come winterised & will only be equipped with snow chains if requested. Tread warily! Note that traffic through Barcelona can be hectic during peak hour, adding to travel times, plus weekend traffic up to the resort can be heavy as well.

Search & book here for private transfers to La Molina-Masella.

La Molina Masella Accommodation

The Alp 2500 ski resort comprises the large alpine village of La Molina & the smaller, & in our view, more vibrant resort village of Masella. Whilst neither is our version of a picture postcard ski village, both are prettily situated amongst forest and have excellent access to the lifts & slopes. There are very few hotels in each village, with most accommodations being apartments.

Search & book here for La Molina - Masella ski accommodation.

Of the two ski area villages, Masella has the best organised & most fun base area after hours. It probably gets less sun in mid-winter but is quite pleasant. La Molina is the best base to access the broader diversity of terrain on a powder morning & is best for beginners. It does however feel dated & is spread across a wide area, contributing to its lack of 'soul'. Additional lodgings are in the valley opposite the La Molina train station. The train & bus links to the ski area might be convenient, but the downtrodden, gloomy vibe in the area leave it in the 'best to avoid unless desperate' category.

The curiously named valley town of Alp is the closest 'major' centre to the ski resort & not without its charms. As with the resort villages, much of the accommodation in the region comprises self-contained apartments plus holidays homes & only a handful of hotels.

For are traditional Pyrenees village experience (& if one has a rental car), stay off the mountain in somewhere like Castellar de n'Hug or La Pobla de Lillet.

Review

The Powderhounds skied La Molina-Masella (Alp 2500) in 2020 & were certainly intrigued by the experience. Click on the review link in the left column (or top of the page if on a mobile) to read all the reviews.

See how La Molina - Masella compares to the rest of the European ski resorts on the Europe ski resort ratings page.

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Tours in or near La Molina-Masella

Backcountry Skiing Tours

Pyrenees Ski Tour - Carros de Foc Circuit
GUIDED BACKCOUNTRY SKI TOUR
7 Days | 6 Nights | 5 Ski Days
Ability: Advanced to Expert
Fully hosted & guided small group backcountry ski touring in the Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici National Park, one of the most beautiful in the Spanish Pyrenees. Stay in mountain huts & ski untracked powder. Private singles or groups apply for your best dates. or join a group.
Price p/p From price based on 2 nights hotel & 4 nights shared hut lodgings.
Base/invoice currency is in EURO inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
USD 2,083
View Details
 
See all Backcountry Skiing tours that visit La Molina Masella here
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