February 5, 2018

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Seasonal flying and other things to do in Saint-Andre-Les-Alpes

December 11, 2017

As the seasons change the flying conditions in St Andre and the surrounding area changes. Here is a quick summary of the conditions by months and what other things you might do on your down days...

 

January to March

Take-off will either be open or blocked by snow. You need to check before you head out.  Flying will be generally smooth and lightly thermic.  Flying further south is peachy and nicely thermic. You can snow shoe to T/O.  Fly at local sites Col Dd Bleine, Gourdon, Greolieres.

 

 

 

Other things to do when not flying...

Superb Skiing & snowboarding at Val d'allos which is only a 45 minute drive away.  There is also amazing mountain biking and road biking in the area.  If your a hiker you can also head out on some amazing hikes around the Gorges and of course sightseeing. Don't expect to sail, the lake empties out for Hyrdo-Electric production during the winter months. 

 

April to June

This is typically our rainy season however there are lots of pilots who enjoy really huge flights from St Andre to Chamonix or Grenoble.  You can also do some gentle top to bottoms in the morning for those who want less XC.

 

For those that do want to fly cross country, most XC's Launch as early as possible on good days and headstraight down route. It can me thermic and bumpy during early the afternoon.  There are incredible glass offs and soaring in the early evening.

 

Other things to do when your not flying...

Ski, ski, ski... here we often ski until mid April, skiing in April in t-shirts!  As the resort is 45 mins further into the mountains the roads and mountains in St Andre are usually clear for MTB, road biking, hiking and trail running.

 

You could also travel down to Entravaux and enjoy a climb on the Via Ferrata, an exhilarating open air climb.  Its also possible to start enjoying the local lake, paddle boarding, kayaking, canoeing and rafting on the Gorge de Verdun.  

 

And if all that sounds a little 'busy' you can also explore the beautiful local villages and walks.

 

July to September

Beginners can enjoy some great top to bottom and soar early morning till 12.  Experts go on huge XC’s.  In late afternoon you head to the lake for a swim then back up the mountain for 4pm to catch the evening flying and those returning from mammoth XC’s.

 

What else can you do...?

As with spring, MTB, Road Biking, trail running and hiking are all possible however a word of caution the temperatures in July/Aug can get to near 40 - take plenty water, and AVOID the mid day sun whether on the sport or not. We tend to stay indoors or chill under shade at the lake12pm-3pm this time of year.

 

 

 

October to December

This is my favourite time of year in St Andre. The autumn colours are stunning and the flying is fantastic.  The flying days get shorter and softer. This is perfect for Rigid Wind flying.  The temperature difference between day and night is huge so expect a little chill at night... but a great excuse to get the log fires or fire pits going!

 

Other things to do when not flying...

The snow doesn't really come to this area until later in November, sometimes December so you can still enjoy walks, trail runs, MTB and road biking. The lake starts to empty from the 1st Sept so you can get some paddle boarding and kayaking in but towards the end of the year this would be come more difficult.

 

 

 

 

 

There is tons of info in the Gites for you to get some more inspiration but of course we are happy to help if you need it.  We also have GREAT friends who are EXPERT guides on hikes, walks and XC in the area. We can introduce you.

 

 

 

 

 

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Domaine du Pigeonnier, La Plaine, Route de Meouilles, Saint-Andre-Les-Alpes, France.

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