Analysing terrain data
The exposure grade does not take into account objective hazards (stone fall, seracs, etc) but only the consequences of the skier falling.
Low Exposure (E1): Exposure is limited to that of the slope itself. Getting hurt is still likely if the slope is steep and/or the snow is hard.
Medium Exposure (E2): As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.
High Exposure (E3): In case of a fall, death is highly likely.
Extreme Exposure (E4): In case of a fall, the skier faces certain death.
You don’t need to be a freeriding expert to ski the Vallon de Chambran.
It is a series of wide open slopes that rarely get over 35 degrees and culminate in an almost flat valley floor where you pass alpine chalets all shut up for the winter.
What you’ll remember most about this descent is the feeling of no longer being in a ski resort.
Indeed that’s the case, as you leave Serre Chevalier almost immediately and head down the valley towards the town and tiny ski area of Pelvoux.
With several 3000 metre plus peaks towering above you to the right, this run makes you feel very small and insignificant.
It is doable in any snow conditions but is at it’s most welcoming in spring snow which can happen from mid February onwards.
The best place to start in order to get the longest and most interesting descent is the Yret chairlift.
Head right off the red piste immediately and just follow the valley all the way down to the flats.
Once through the flat section, depending on the snow cover, you can either be picked up by car at the end of the road (Chambran chalets) or ski on down the snow covered road as far as conditions allow.
In mid winter you can often get right down to the village of Pelvoux.
This makes this run a fantastic option if you combine it with a half day skiing in the resort of Pelvoux, itself a bit of a hidden gem in terms of its off piste terrain.
You’ll need to arrange transport home – either a taxi or a friend as there’s no public transport.
It’s a good 40 minutes back round the mountain to Serre Chevalier so they’ll have to be a very good friend.