south american winters

Although not as developed as European resorts and with variable snow records, South American resorts have come of age in recent years.

Ski Areas

Bariloche is favoured by the Buenos Aires crowd, with 32 lifts and 50 runs on the Catedral Mountain. Las Lenas is a smaller, purpose built resort with only 11 lifts. More of a concern may be the altitude - Las Lenas goes as high as Mont Blanc (4800m). Perito Morenio has five lifts and is alleged to be free, but if you really want to get away from it all, why not try Tierra del Fuego - the world's most southerly ski area.

Chile has its own 'Three Valleys', made up of Valle Nevado, El Colorado and La Parva. There's not quite as much variety as in Europe, but with 40 lifts there's plenty to ski. Watch out for weekends though - at only 40miles from Santiago it can get very busy. Slightly further to the north is Portillo, a smaller resort with a dozen lifts and just the one hotel.

Rosy Cave worked a season in El Colorado. You can read about her experiences and recommendations here.

When to Go

New snow making facilities means that by late-May skiing should be possible. Depending how far south you go, the season can last until September or October, but it may be best to avoid school holidays in July.

Club des Saisonniers
Argentinian members
Chilean members

Web Sites
The South American Ski Guide
[well, this used to exist, but bizarrely it's now become a porn site, so we've removed the link]
Edass Snoventures
Las Lenas
Peak Leaders
Powderquest South America
Catedral
Cerro Bayo
STA adventures - Summer skiing in South America

 

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