The Haute Route


British Mountaineer Paul Swail is a IFMGA Mountain Guide - the highest recognised mountaineering qualification in the world. With this, Paul is able to offer off-piste skiing, touring, heli-skiing, ice climbing, and all sorts of wonderful ways to enjoy the Alpine environment. Paul is offering a fantastic opportunity to join him on a 6-day touring trip, starting on 24th March between Chamonix and Zermatt - the legendary Haute Route. One of the TG Ski Directors has done this route and described it as “epic” and one for the bucket list! Paul is no stranger to Meribel, and if touring is your thing, we’re happy to make enquiries as to his availability for other trips during your stay with us.

Paul has supplied the itinerary and details for the Haute Route trip below. If you are interested, contact Paul via his website -


The Classic Ski Haute Route. Chamonix – Zermatt

You would need to be able to skin up 1200m of ascent per day and ski red/ black runs with confidence.

Sunday 24th March 2019

Training/Refresher day.

Before setting off on the Haute Route, we do a warm up and training day. The

aim is for you to get in a day’s acclimatisation, enjoy some good skiing and

refresh on your touring skills. During the day we will recap on skinning and kick

turns, do some transceiver training and either some crampon and ropework, or

glacier skiing.

Typically ~400m ascent, 2000m descent ~5-6hrs


Grand Montets to the Trient Hut or Albert Premier Hut

Due to the recent fire at Grand Montets the access to the Argentiere glacier will

be from the mid station. From the glacier a choice of routes now presents itself –

either the Col du Chardonnet or Col du Passon. We will follow which ever route

is in best condition, as both lead on to either the Swiss border and the Trient Hut,

or the Le Tour Glacier and the Albert Premier Hut. This first day is quite long,

with 1050m of climb and a couple of sections of roped climbing on foot –

however the views and high mountain ambiance are amazing.

1050m ascent, 1200m descent ~7-8hrs


Val D’Arpette – Verbier – Prafleuri Hut

The day begins with a few hundred metres of descent down the right bank of the

Trient Glacier, followed by a short boot track to reach the Col des Ecandies at the

top of the Val D’Arpette.

This deep, north facing valley gives a wonderful long ski run right down to

Champex, where we meet a pre arranged minibus to take us the few kilometers

down the valley to the Verbier lift system. After lunch on the slopes in Verbier, if

heading to the Prafleuri Hut we set off in the afternoon to traverse 3 cols with

short descents in between, which leads to the glacier below the Rosablanche and

a good north facing decent down to the Prafleuri Hut – this is a long day and we

usually arrive at the hut around 5pm.

700m ascent, 2400m descent ~8-9hrs.


Prafleuri to Dix Hut

From the Prafleuri Hut, an hours skinning leads to the Col des Roux, where the

long descending traverse above the Lac de Dix begins. This section of the route is

south facing, so in warm weather, must be completed early in the day. On paper

this is quite a short day from the Prafleuri Hut, but the uphill finish in the

afternoon heat makes it feel much harder. Luckily the Dix Hut is in a superb

position, with a great sunny terrace where you can enjoy the view and a well

earned beer before dinner.

900m ascent, 600m descent ~5-7hrs


Pigne D’Arolla to Vignettes Hut

At 3790m, the Pigne D’Arolla marks the highest point reached on the trip and is a

wonderful viewpoint across the whole of the Western Alps.

The ascent from the Dix Hut involves 900m of climb and takes about 3 hours,

passing through some steep glacier terrain, including the passage of the

Serpentine, which often has to be climbed on foot.

From the summit, it’s a 600m descent down to the Vignettes Hut, which lies

perched in a spectacular position on a rocky ridge crest. Here again, in the right

conditions it’s sometimes possible to take a different line in order to find fresh


950m ascent, 700m descent ~4hrs


Final Day to Zermatt

The final day of the Haute Route is always one of the most memorable days out

in any ski mountaineers career – crossing three cols and six glaciers, with a final

huge descent down to Zermatt under the North Face of the Matterhorn.

An early start is required to make the first climb up the Col de L’Eveque, before a

nice descent and second climb up to the Col du Mont Brule. The final section of

this is steep and frequently climbed on foot.

From the Col Brule, the Col Valpelline doesn’t look that far away, but it always

takes a good two hours to reach. Cresting the final col, the Matterhorn rears up

ahead, opening the way to the final 1900m descent down the Stockji and Zmutt

Glaciers to Zermatt.

750m ascent, 2400m descent ~8-10hrs from the Vignettes


Spare Day – to allow for weather delays.

If we reach Zermatt on Friday, then Saturday will be a spare day to ski off

piste/tour either in Zermatt or Chamonix. PM Overnight in Chamonix valley.

Sunday 31st March

Return travel should be arranged on Sunday morning, after your final nights


Price and what is included?

£1150/ €1300

• All IFMGA guiding fees

• Guides hut fees and uplift

• 4 hut nights on the Haute Route

What is not included?

• Flights/ Transfers

• Accommodation in the valley outside of 4 hut nights

• Verbier Transfer

• Ski Hire

• Insurance

• Uplift

For more information about Paul’s experience, training and exciting tours, check out his website


Paralympics in Pyeongchang


The South Korea Olympics has had us glued to our seats, whether it's the frighteningly fast luge or the slalom skiing which we excitedly cheered Team GB’s Dave Ryding into 9th place. The increasing popularity of the Paralympics which starts today shows what advances have been made in making snowsports more accessible for everyone, regardless of disability. The courage and sheer perseverance of the Paralympians is so impressive, and should be a reminder of the efforts involved by these tremendous athletes – which extends to whether they are professional Paralympians or those participating on a recreational basis. Imagine being able to ski blind, like those with visual impairments who ski with a guide, or those with limb-impairments pushing the boundaries of what’s ‘possible’. They act as a great source of inspiration, so the Paralympics is definitely worth a watch. Team GB is aiming for its biggest medal haul, and we’ll be keeping an eye on their progress.

Snowsports has come a long way in trying to increase accessibility to anyone who wants to enjoy it. Several charities and organisations now operate adaptive programmes with specialist knowledge and experience so they are better equipped to welcome disabled guests. Research done initially through the charity Scope in the 1970s showed the benefits of skiing in enhancing co-ordination, balance and self-awareness of those with cerebral palsy. This has continued with charities such as Disability Snowsport UK set up to encourage participation in snowsports. Incentives are available in resorts, such as the Portes Du Soleil offering a reduced-price lift pass for those with a disability (with sufficient proof from a UK doctor and disabled badge).

At TG Ski we can help to accommodate requests for guests with disabilities. Whether it’s our Chalet Les Pierrys having lift access to all floors, which is incredibly helpful for those with reduced mobility, and a bathroom with wider doors to allow access for a wheelchair. Or our links with recommended ski schools, some of whom have specially trained Adaptive Instructors, who cater for those with either physical disabilities, or learning difficulties and sensory impairment. First-hand, our team has experience working as part of the adaptive ski programme. We know the chalet holiday experience should be for the whole family, regardless of any disability. Speak to us for further information - we’re really happy to assist where we can, or to make enquiries on your behalf.

Top tips for skiing with children


1.       Especially if the little ones are catching their first glimpses of snow, we think it’s all about getting them to love the white, fluffy stuff, so they’ll be wanting to come back again and again. Sometimes they’ll prefer sledging, making snow angels or snowball fights. Other times, they’ll be hurtling themselves down the mountain like a championship skier. Progress really is on an individual basis, depending on the child. Ski Schools are a great way to encourage this development, and TG Ski can help you book your lessons; please just ask.

2.       Layer up! Make sure everyone keeps nice and toastie by layering clothes, so kids can take things off if they’re hot, but also ensuring they don’t get cold. Although if anyone’s really chilly, head back to the chalet and warm up by the log fires or in the hot tub!


3.       Encourage hot chocolate breaks! It’s also a chance for you to grab a cheeky mulled wine, but means the kids can thaw out, dry off and rest their legs. Really important if they’re going to last all week! Or recharge with our delicious afternoon teas in the chalets, which our staff will have prepared for you whilst you’ve been out on the slopes.

4.       On that note, make sure they’ve got enough energy. Our chefs will tailor their menus according to your group’s requirements, to ensure the little guys have full bellies all week, as well as gourmet food for the adults. Fussy eater? We’ve got it covered! Speak to our Concierge Team in advance, and our chefs will liaise with you at the start of your week. If the kids are happy, the parents can enjoy their food, guilt-free!

5.       Kids love adventure, so tree runs, jumps and bumps are always top of their lists. Ask our experienced team and we will happily share our favourite ski secrets. We can organise your lift passes so they’re waiting for you in your chalet, getting you the best deals with family or children’s passes, passing on any savings directly to you. Just speak to a member of our concierge team.


6.       For any tiny tots, we can supply cots, highchairs, bed guards and bottle sterilisers to make sure you’ve got what you need. Please speak to us about any additional requirements; we’re happy to help as our team know what it’s like to travel with little children! Hence why we supply complimentary nappies and baby wipes, to save on precious luggage space. We can also source local nannies to come to your chalet, or the highly recommended local creche if required.

7.       The kids will be better skiers than you in no time. Unfortunately, this is something you may just have to accept! And if the ski bug has been caught, you can prepare yourselves for this becoming an annual trip, with little ones begging you to come back. No problem… we offer TG Ski returning guests a 10% discount if you book for next season!   

Interview with Winter Olympic medal hopeful, British slalom star Dave Ryding

With UK Sport building upon its successes in recent years, this coming Winter Olympics in South Korea could be one to watch! Investment into Team GB has led to some great progression over the last four years. There are high hopes for medals; one of whom is slalom skier, Dave Ryding, who took a fantastic podium finish of 2nd at the Kitzbuhel World Cup Slalom in January 2017. Admitting that crisps are his guilty pleasure, and that he likes his French crepes with ‘sucre citroen’ topping, Dave took a few minutes away from his busy training schedule to talk to us:

*Amazing result for you in Kitzbuhel this year. How did it feel? Kitzbuhel was a crazy day, I will never replicate that feeling of getting my first podium unless I win one I guess... It was a whole different level media wise, interest in my story and where I have come from, and the pressure of the difficult piste was crazy.

* Favourite ski resort: Hinterstoder, Austria is my personal favourite... it’s not the biggest but has everything and it is perfect for the family.

* Top tips for new skiers: Get some Fischer skis and enjoy the mountains!

* Do you have a pre-race routine? No routine other than my warm up and focus on controlling my breathing

* Pre-race meal: whatever is in the athlete hospitality and a good whole breakfast

* It’s your third Olympics how are you feeling about it in general? And how do you feel about your chances? I will focus on the Olympics when the time comes, my chances all depend on how I’m skiing on the World Cup first.

*  You must spend a lot of time travelling, what are your travel essentials that you can’t do without? eye mask and ear plugs.... I can’t get by without my sleep

* What have you been doing this summer? A hell of a lot of training as I always do... when I stop skiing then I will have time to do other things I guess, but for now I’m all in.

* Ski resort you’d like to visit? I would like to see a bit more of the American ones... but I have jet lag so maybe I will leave them.

* What’s on your Christmas list? some good ski form for January... it’s a hectic month!

* If you hadn’t been a race skier, what do you think you’d have been? I love sport so I would like to think doing another sport... I had a teacher in mind when I was younger also.


All of us at TG Ski wish Dave the best of luck for his Olympic campaign. He’ll undoubtedly be an inspiration to the next generation of slalom skiers. Go Dave!

If all this talk of skiing leaves you itching to book a trip out to the Alps, please get in touch with our team to experience it for yourselves. You never know, one of your group may be a future Olympian in the making! At TG Ski, we offer catered chalet holidays with the emphasis on exceptional quality service, in beautifully presented luxury chalets, with exquisite food. Come and get exited about snowsports with us!



I loved the care and professionalism of the staff. Skiing can be daunting when you are a beginner, so it was wonderful to have experienced staff on hand to really look after everything, give you lots of individual attention and to advise you. But it goes beyond that, I felt really looked after and cared for.

Meet this year's resort team

People are the foundation of our brand. It’s been a summer filled with Skype calls and lots of Facetime, and with special thanks to some loyal returning staff, we are excited to be putting the finishing touches to our TG Ski Team this winter. We know that recruiting the best staff is crucial to our goals, of creating the best possible experience for our clients. We genuinely care about getting it right, as we want our Chalet Chefs, Hosts and Drivers to be a true reflection of the unrivalled service that TG Ski offer. So we look forward to welcoming the new team to resort and helping them settle in, in time to welcome our guests to their beautiful chalets.


Thanks to all who have applied. We had some great applicants who, due to demand, we weren’t able to place, but thank you for your time to everyone who wanted to join our team. To anyone who’s thinking about a season in future… please get in touch. There’s sometimes drop outs during the season due to injury, or it’s never too early to start thinking about next year!

Career swaps

Considering the amount of time you spend in work, I didn’t want to be in a job which didn’t reflect the real ‘me’. I wanted to be part of something that I really believed in. This meant swapping my comfy finance job and commute of less than a mile, and I don’t regret it for a second!

When TG Ski was being formed in 2004, I was off doing my first ski season as a Ski Instructor in Canada, and fell in love with the mountains. Having skied in my childhood, this was my dream. Fast forward through University (where I spent more time in the Alps than the library), I graduated with a Business Degree, and couldn’t get fast enough back to the snow. Much to the dismay of University friends, who thought I should be applying for a ‘proper’ job…. But I knew that wasn’t for me.

Six ski seasons and many air miles later, after following the winter in Canada, Australia and Japan, I thought it was time to return home. Somehow life got in the way and I got stuck in 9-5 finance jobs, until this perfect opportunity came up. Working for a company who value exceptional service, and genuinely care about not only meeting guests’ needs, but exceeding expectations. So here I am. Delighted to be thinking all things TG Ski. And so far, it’s everything I’d hoped it would be.

I look forward to helping you with any aspect of your upcoming ski holiday, and welcoming you to our beautiful chalets in the French Alps this winter.


Christmas Ski Offers

We are delighted to give you a sneak preview of our Christmas offers that will going live on our website over the weekend. With only 87 days until Father Christmas comes down our chimneys, what better present to give your nearest and dearest this year than a snowy Christmas in the Alps.

New Chalet - Chalet Les Pierrys

New Chalet - Chalet Les Pierrys
“It’s integral that every single chalet which forms part of the TG Ski portfolio provides guests with the highest standard of service. Whilst most visitors to Morzine are keen to hit the slopes, we want our guests to be just as excited to spend time relaxing and unwinding in their private holiday retreat.”

Tom Marley-Shaw, TG Ski Director