Overall Rating

Crans Montana

Crans Montana4/51
Crans Montana4 out of 5 based on 1 reviews
  • Recommend
    100%
  • Would Revisit
    100%
Ski & Sail Norway Lyngen Alps
Wagner Custome Skis

Nearby Ski Resorts

Aletsch Arena
Belalp
Grimentz Zinal
Lauchernalp
Saas Fee
Zermatt
     Crans Montana Ski Trail Map
  • Crans Montana Ski Trail Map
  • Vertical (m)
    1,510m – 2,927m (1,417m)
  • Average Snow Fall
    8m
  • Lifts (19)
    4 Cable car/gondola
    6 Chairlifts
  • Opening Dates & Times
    Early Dec to Early April
    8:45am to 4:30pm
  • Terrain Summary
    Runs – 140km
    Longest run – 12km
    Advanced -12%
    Intermediate - 50%
    Beginner - 38%
  • Lift Pass Price (Day Ticket 18/19)
    Adult – CHF69
    Child – CHF39
    Child u/6yr – Free

Crans Montana - Reviews

Crans Montana - Reviews

Crans Montana passes the tough 'busiest day test'

Powderhounds Europe11/03/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Telemarker
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Month Visited:
    January

Crans Montana passes the tough 'busiest day test'

Powderhounds Europe11/03/2019

Snow overnight & a bluebird, windless morning were the first ingredients of a busy day at Crans Montana. Add in close proximity to Geneva, the day being Saturday & the first weekend of February high season - the odds of lift queues & stiff competition for powder went through the roof. But whilst the off piste did get tracked, we rode freshies after lunch & we didn’t even know the hill. A fantastic measure of a major ski resort.

Lift queues in the main were non-existent on this busiest of days. The longest wait was for the glacier funitel which we stupidly went for too late in the morning. Didn’t take long for those numbers to drop away as we had coffee & apple tart in the small summit restaurant. After the seething horde had got the ‘mega rite of passage Crans Montana black run’ out of their systems, we successfully rode the entire way down in fresh off-piste powder. 30 to 40cm deep & perfect 30 to 38-degree pitch most of the way - in between the inevitable traversing of course.

Of the three main access gondolas, two are in locations difficult for pedestrians to easily access. The Montana gondola from street level is accessed from a discreet passageway via a tunnel, escalator, stairs & a ramp (plus left, right, up & across). Those in the know will find it easy, those new to the resort may be best off following the aforementioned people in the know!

The Toula chair & glacier funitel are the ‘go to’ propositions on a powder day. Best access is via Barzettes-Violettes gondola. Early birds will reap a rich harvest here.

On-piste skiers will enjoy the wide diversity trails from the high glacier all the way down into the trees & ‘village’ runs – many of which in combination are over 10km long – enough to blast the leg muscles of the toughest groomerhound. The terrain park below Cry d’Er is sensational & a good challenger to the beast at Laax ski resort – reason enough for park junkies to attend Crans Montana.

One note of warning though. At the end of the day, the ski down from Cry d’Er is hellish, particularly if the weather suddenly turns bad & everyone decides to leave at once. A particular intersection of trails which leads to all three village areas is a bumped-up sea of out of control humanity. Look left, look right, look ahead, hell, look behind if you can – it’s a dangerous but strangely exhilarating way to end the day.

Access to the ski resort is via Sierre (French) or Sidens (Swiss German) - a city of no redeeming features other than as a transport gateway to numerous ski areas on the high terraces to the north (including Crans Montana) & the isolated Val d’Anniviers to the south. Trains from the direction of Brig, Zurich, Bern, Martigny, Montreux & Geneva all converge on Sierre making travel a synch. Sierre’s modern sprawl of low-rise concrete apartments provide all the momentum one needs to head directly to the hills as soon as possible.

Three major village bases all blend into one across the entire base area. From the centre of Crans to Montana only takes about 10 to 15min to walk. To Barzettes (which has the gondola up to Violettes & the glacier) it is best to take the regular buses. Similarly, the furthest of the resort villages, Aminona, has a bus running to it every 30min during the day via Crans, Montana & Barzettes. Even though replete with high-end shops & hotels, none of the villages is particularly alluring. But the villages are not the reason to come to Crans Montana. Come here to ski, eat, drink & sleep. Leave the shopping & such to a lazy day in summer.

The following day was a gorgeous, seething blizzard of fat flakes, blowing snow & low visibility. Staying on the lower tree lined runs was the business. Crowds were non-existent. Avoid bluebird weekend days & clearly the skiing at Crans Montana is very quiet.

Double thumbs up Crans Montana, a cracking ski area that passes the 'busiest day test' with aplomb.. But not convinced about the villages!