Off-Piste Skiing – Private Guiding
From Introduction Level | Private Guiding

✦ Experienced UIAGM/IFMGA mountain guides
✦ From beginner to expert
✦ Possibility to add heli-skiing
✦ Group sizes up to 6 skiers/boarders per guide
✦ High safety level

  • location | Chamonix
  • Season | December - April
  • dURATION | Any number of days
  • Guide Ratio | 1-6
  • Technical Level | S1-S4
  • Fitness Level | From A
  • Minimum Age | 12

Check our Grading Page

Private Mountain Guide in Chamonix
Explore Chamonix’s internationally acclaimed off-piste terrain alongside an experienced and local UIAGM/IFGMA guide. The terrain in Chamonix is very varied. You will find beautiful forest runs, large powder bowls, challenging steep chutes and couloirs, and impressive glacier skiing.

During the winter, we organize off-piste days for private groups and individuals looking for a great Chamonix off-piste experience. Our objective is to provide the best Chamonix can offer at a given time in terms of finding great snow and exciting terrain, matching the group’s ambition, ability, and size.

Flexible Dates, number of days, and focus
You can book a single day or several consecutive days of off-piste experience.
The guide can give tips on your ski technique and mix in valuable avalanche beacon training.
With more days, you can cover more ground and get more tuition for off-piste skiing.
Book well in advance, and we will do our best to make sure it’s the same guide for all the days & organize potential lift reservations for the Aiguille du Midi and SkyWay cable car.
For all groups booking more than one day, it will be possible to fit in the Vallée Blanche run as long as the group level is okay and the weather is good.

Group Sizes
A guide will take a maximum of 6 skiers on normal off-piste skiing from lifts.

A group of 3-4 skiers are a good number for medium-advanced off-piste. This group can often drive with the guide in his car and will be able to heli-ski without the need to book extra guides.

For individuals with ambitions and skills to ski more difficult and steep variations, you must be no more than two skiers per guide.

For very steep runs and complicated skiing expect to be one skier with the guide.

After the first warm-up day, the guide will know the group’s strengths and weaknesses and find the best runs to make it exciting without compromising safety.

Heliskiing – Italy & Switzerland
Heliskiing is a great option when the snow is excellent and the weather and snow conditions are stable. This is possible in Switzerland and Italy. We can arrange typically arrange heli-ski drops from mid-January.

A guide can take a maximum of four skiers when heliskiing. If you are in a group larger than four skiers, we will need to assign extra guides to the group.

The costs of heli-skiing are added to the guide rate. The costs include:

1. The helicopter rotation(s)
2. Rental of ABS bags (Obligatory in Italy)
3. Transport (e.g., taxi, parking, tunnel fees)
4. Lunches.

On specific heli-drops, it can be worth adding some ski touring for teams with ski touring experience and touring equipment. This allows us to add extra time and adventure to the trip.

Ski Touring
As more and more people venture into the easiest accessible off-piste, it also gets tracked out relatively quickly. Sometimes, you only need 15-30 minutes of hiking or touring to get to large, un-tracked patches. We can do this on standard off-piste days, but only if the whole group is equipped with skins and touring bindings. As we are only doing short hikes & tours, we don’t need the lightest touring equipment.

Other options:

Piste guiding –  Book a guide for enjoying the best pistes and trying a little off-piste. The guide will be able to make restaurant bookings before the day to ensure places are secured. 

2-day Vallée Blanche descent – We take groups of up to 6 skiers per guide. On day 1, the guide will do a “test & training day” and plan to ski the Vallée Blanche on the second.

Valley Transport
The meeting point will most often be at the ski area the guide has chosen for the day. You should be able to get there by communal bus/train.

For small groups, you will most likely be able to drive with your guide to the area. This is possible if the guide has transportation.
For larger groups, we can, if necessary, hire a taxi or use the client’s cars.

If you use the guide’s car to get around, compensate the guide for fuel/parking and tunnel fees going through the Mont Blanc tunnel.

Security Gear
If skiing on a glacier, you can borrow an avalanche transceiver/shovel/probe from the guide and harness.

If you have your gear, you should use this.
The guide will not provide avalanche backpacks. You can rent these if you desire in shops in Chamonix town.

Check-list
To get the most out of the day and maximize our possibilities of skiing the best snow at the right time, this is a list that is logical but can be a help for you:

1. Be fresh and well-rested in the morning
2. Rent equipment or retrieve your skis from service the day before.
3. If possible, sort your lift passes out the day before.
4. Get your backpack ready the evening before
5. Be on time for the rendezvous. Check the itinerary and the time it will take you to get to the meeting point.
6. Remember your passport if we are off to Courmayeur (Italy).
7. Bring money and a credit card for expenses.

Travel, accommodation, Insurance.
Please consult our FAQ page for information about travel, accommodationinsurancebooking process, and other general information. Click here.

Winter 2024

No. of ParticipantsGuide-fee 1 – 3 days booked Guide-fee ≧ 4 days booked
1 600€/day575€/day
2650€/day600€/day
3700€/day650€/day
4750€/day700€/day
5800€/day750€/day
6850€/day800€/day

The guide fee is shown as the rate per day booked.

A discount is offered if you book 4 or more consecutive days of guiding.

If the request is for a guide travelling to other resorts, expect a supplementary add-on for any preparation time and travel expenses.

 

Included

Planning & logistics
Assignment of guides, planning, information before the course, reservation of lifts.

UIAGM/IFMGA guides
The guides working with us hold the highest recognized mountaineering certificate. They are equally a friendly and nice group of guides used to handling groups and climbs in the Alps.

Avalanche Gear
We can provide avalanche transceivers, shovels, and probes for the group.
If you have your kit, we recommend you use this.
When skiing on glaciers, the guide will equip the group with harnesses.

Group equipment (ropes & safety gear)
The guides provide the group security gear (rope, glacier travel equipment).
You only need to make sure you have your equipment.

Excluded

Any cost not mentioned in the  “Included” section. The most important ones are:

Transport to Chamonix
Read more in the “more information” section.

Transport in Chamonix Valley
Meeting points can be reached with the valley bus/train system or private cars.
If the guide car is used, please reimburse expenses directly to the guide, such as petrol, tunnel fee, and parking.

Accommodation in the valley
Read more in the “more information” section

Lift-passes
The Chamonix Unlimited ski pass. We recommend you take out this pass., which gives the broadest access to the high lifts and includes Les Houches and Courmayeur ski stations.

Personal ski gear
Check the “Equipment” section.

Lunches & drinks
We will always be able to eat in a cafeteria/restaurant, but you are welcome to bring a sandwich.

Insurance
You should make sure you are adequately insured. Check our page on insurance.

The guide fee is shown as the rate per day booked.

A discount is offered if you book 4 or more consecutive days of guiding.

If the request is for a guide travelling to other resorts, expect a supplementary add-on for any preparation time and travel expenses.

 

Included

Planning & logistics
Assignment of guides, planning, information before the course, reservation of lifts.

UIAGM/IFMGA guides
The guides working with us hold the highest recognized mountaineering certificate. They are equally a friendly and nice group of guides used to handling groups and climbs in the Alps.

Avalanche Gear
We can provide avalanche transceivers, shovels, and probes for the group.
If you have your kit, we recommend you use this.
When skiing on glaciers, the guide will equip the group with harnesses.

Group equipment (ropes & safety gear)
The guides provide the group security gear (rope, glacier travel equipment).
You only need to make sure you have your equipment.

Excluded

Any cost not mentioned in the  “Included” section. The most important ones are:

Transport to Chamonix
Read more in the “more information” section.

Transport in Chamonix Valley
Meeting points can be reached with the valley bus/train system or private cars.
If the guide car is used, please reimburse expenses directly to the guide, such as petrol, tunnel fee, and parking.

Accommodation in the valley
Read more in the “more information” section

Lift-passes
The Chamonix Unlimited ski pass. We recommend you take out this pass., which gives the broadest access to the high lifts and includes Les Houches and Courmayeur ski stations.

Personal ski gear
Check the “Equipment” section.

Lunches & drinks
We will always be able to eat in a cafeteria/restaurant, but you are welcome to bring a sandwich.

Insurance
You should make sure you are adequately insured. Check our page on insurance.

We have no fixed itinerary for privately guided groups. The guide will establish a program based on the group size, skiing level, snow conditions, and the weather forecast.
If the snow is better further away, we can drive out of the valley (Verbier, Courmayeur…) or go ski touring.
When the weather is good, and the snow is brilliant, we can also look at different heli-ski options, which we get to within a 30mn-1h drive.

 

 

Check the weather and dress accordingly. The list below should give you a general idea about what to bring. As private guiding days go on, we will establish a program with each group, and the equipment might be slightly different from group to group. Particularly if we decide to do some touring as well. We will let you know in advance.

Clothes

Shell jacket – You need a lightweight, yet relatively sturdy shell jacket that is stowed away and doesn’t take to much space. If you can fit your ski helmet under the hood it’s great. Most jackets today have vents under the arms for ventilation.

Shell pants – They will be the best protection against the element. For pure off-piste skiing, you will be best off with a pair of bibs/salopettes that rise over the waistline to avoid snow coming in.

Base layers – Top and bottom thermal underwear. You can adjust these to be either a light or warm version. It all depends on the temperatures of the day.

Mid-layer – A mid-grade fleece sweater or jacket is great.

Extra warm layer – Light fiber and down jacket.

Warm hat – That covers the ears.

Neck gaiter – Something that can warm your neck and protect against wind and bad weather. A “buff” or other balaclavas are great.

2 Pairs of gloves – It’s wise to have a spare pair of gloves in your backpack for wet and snowy days. For very warm days you could bring a pair of warm gloves and 1 pair of lighter gloves.

Socks – Make sure to choose a pair of socks that will keep you warm, but not so that you are too tight in the boots.

Technical equipment

25-40-liter backpack – Go with a simple backpack. You should have room for some extra clothing, water, a shovel, and a probe. You need to be able to attach the skis to the backpack.
You can wear a specific avalanche backpack if you wish, but it’s only obligatory for heli-skiing in the Alps. I can be an added safety!

Ski boots – You can use your normal ski boots, but beware that these might not work with some of the touring bindings you can rent. We recommend that you ultimately upgrade your ski boots or rent a pair of free-ride/touring-orientated models. These will have “walk-mode”, “Vibram-sole”, “Inserts” and a softer overall flex.  These boots are today quite versatile and even good to ski pistes with. You can get help in most shops from an educated person, who can guide you in your choice.

Skis – For off-piste skiing, we use specific all-mountain / Off-piste skis. If we want to have the ability to go for shorter touring during the day we will need to bring touring gear.

Ski poles – Normal poles are ok. You will need to have a “wider” basket at the pole-tip, so the poles can be useful for pushing around in soft snow.

Ski helmet – We strongly recommend you wear a helmet. We understand that it’s a personal choice, but we can impose this as “obligatory” if conditions are delicate.

Ski strap – Used for various things, but mostly to keep your skis together in the morning and to attach the tips when carrying them on the backpack.

Avalanche
beacon*

Avalanche shovel* 

Probe*

Harness* – When glacier skiing

* Let us know if you need to borrow any of these items, and we will borrow them to you as long as we have enough. You can otherwise rent in most shops in town.

Various items

Water bottle – 1l water bottle. Water systems will freeze.

Snacks – A few snacks, nuts, and a small sandwich. We can also eat in a restaurant/cafeteria.

Suncream & sun-stick

Snow goggles

Sunglasses

Personal items – Money, passport, social security card, insurance card, etc.

Phone – Type in the emergency number and keep it warm/dry during the day.

Tour Grade: S1-S4/From A

Please read through the requirements for participating in this tour and follow the link to the “grading page.”

Technical Level

We can arrange privately guiding for all level of skiers.

To get the most out of the day(s) you need to already be a good piste skier at a minimum.

A technical level of 2 or more on our grading page is required if you have ambitions of skiing the best terrain and will provide a large choice of runs.

Fitness

Off-piste skiing is tiring and strenuous on your body, and joints and you will need a better cardio performance than normal piste skiing.
Having a good off-piste ski level will make it possible to somewhat compensate for lack of fitness, but there is a limit.
To be able to enjoy the Chamonix off-piste and have great days, with options to do some touring and heli-skiing, you should at least fit our A fitness requirement. Being on B and C opens up even more possibilities.

General Information

Getting to Chamonix or the course venue
For most of our clients, the easiest way to get to Chamonix or the Alps, in general, is by plane. The nearest airport is Geneva.
Read more about getting to Chamonix here – Click here.

Valley accommodation
Not everyone wants the same accommodation type, so we rarely include Valley accommodation. Check our suggested hotels, B&B, and campsites on this page – Click here.

If you want us to include hotel nights in the price, please let us know what standard you are looking for.

Insurance
You must take out search & rescue, repatriation, and cancellation insurance. Read more about insurance here – Click here.

Safety
We believe our finest task is to give every client a unique mountain experience without taking unnecessary risks. The experience of the mountain guide, access to the most recent weather forecasts, and information sharing between guides are some of the important elements for making good and sound judgment calls. Suppose conditions or other situations render an attempt at a peak dangerous, avalanche conditions of a ski tour no longer possible, etc.. In that case, the guide will do his/her best to devise a good alternate plan. This might be a 100% change of the program. Emphasis is put on staying safe and having a great time!

Mountain huts
In some of our courses, we stay in mountain huts. On hut-to-hut trips, they are part of the itinerary; at other times, we use them as the starting point for a climb or ski tour.
The mountain huts offer basic accommodation in bunk-style rooms. Blankets and duvets are in the huts, so you don’t need to bring a sleeping bag. It is obligatory to bring a sleeping bag liner.
We are served a simple breakfast and a 3-course dinner (soup, main meal, dessert).
We will let the guardian of the hut know if you are on a special diet (vegetarians, allergies, etc.). Vegans will need to bring supplementary food.
There are hut slippers available for use inside the hut.
It’s helpful to bring cash for personal expenses (water, soft drinks, beer, lunches, etc.)
There is mostly no tap water in the huts, and you must buy bottled water.
You will be able to charge your phone.
Some mountain huts have showers. You must mostly pay for this; only a few huts can provide towels.

Make a booking
Please read through all the course information. Please make sure that you have the required level to join the course.
Contact us if you have any questions.

Read more about the booking process here – Click here.

We will need all to join a course to complete our “Participation Form.”