Where to Heli-ski from Les Arcs | Welove2ski
Ski Holiday

First-Time Heli Trip from Les Arcs to Tignes

After driving the length of France and finally getting into the apartment that will be my winter home, I was pleased to find Arc 2000‘s free WiFi still functional. I was doubly pleased to find an email from the Arc 1950 ski school, Spirit, inviting me to join them the next day on a helicopter trip to Tignes.

The Alps have seen some great early snowfall and cold temperatures and I awoke to a crisp, fresh day with clear blue skies.

Where to Heli-ski in Les Arcs | Welove2ski
Lea from Spirit contemplates the view of Arc 1950 from the ground. Photo: © Tim Wilson.

Meanwhile the helicopter gets a little help warming up…

Where to Heli-ski from Les Arcs | Welove2ski
In sub-zero temperatures, helicopters need help too. Photo: © Tim Wilson.

A quick instrument check and we’re up and taking in the bird’s eye view of Arc 1950. It’s my first time in a helicopter and I can’t help but grin… all the way to Tignes!

It’s about a six-minute ride with exquisite views on all sides. Mont Blanc, Villaroger nature reserve, the dam and the lake on the way into Tignes, glaciers all around… superb. We survey the villages of Tignes before a heart-stopping banked turn, dropping down to our landing spot.

Where to Heli-ski from Les Arcs | Welove2ski
Aerial view of Tignes. Photo: © Tim Wilson.

A group of other seasonnaires welcomed us and then set off for their own brief tour. We sat at a café sipping hot chocolates watching the skiers and boarders. I’d almost forgotten that in Espace Killy the lifts have already been running for a good few days.

Where to Heli-ski from Les Arcs | Welove2ski
Get ready for take-off. Photo: © Tim Wilson.

Time to head home so I can spend the rest of the day telling people I’ve just been to Tignes for a hot chocolate!

Panoramic helicopter tours are available for around 45€ each for five or six people. For this you get about eight minutes’ flight time and I can highly recommend the experience. Further details from Erna Low or the Spirit ski school.

About the author

Tim Wilson

Tim Wilson has been working for independent ski specialists, Erna Low for 10 years and is based in Les Arcs this winter.