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.
The 2566 metre summit of the Prorel dominates the Chantemerle and Briancon sectors and there are rideable routes on every aspect, ranging from the fairly straightforward to the highly exposed.
The hike to the summit is up the west ridge and generally takes 20-30 minutes.
If the climb is icy it is much more comfortable to use crampons as there are one or two places where you really don’t want to fall.
The exact route depends on snow conditions and it is often necessary to move away from the ridge a bit and find a passage through the rocks on the first half of the climb.
From the summit and heading into the couloir there is an exceptional view of Briançon’s old walled town though the chances are you’ll be too focussed on the skiing once you get moving.
In fresh powder it really is something else.
Once you reach the trees, watch out for a couple of cliffs straight ahead and to the right.
Avoid them by heading diagonally left.
From here you can either head back to the Aiguillette chairlift by staying left as you descend through the trees, or aim for the mid station of the Prorel gondola.
If you are aiming for the Aiguillette chair and reach a snow covered road, don’t go any lower or you’ll have a lot of walking to do.
Instead, walk or skate to the left, following the road until you see the bottom of the Aiguillette chairlift or the piste.
If you reach one aiming for the Briançon side, head right along it and you’ll end up back on the Vauban piste.