In the heart of the Parpaillon massif, facing the Pic de Chabrières, we find the Crévoux ski resort, labeled “Mountain Village”, 1600 meters above sea level. Crévoux is a mountain village in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region in the Hautes-Alpes department.
Location of the Crévoux ski resort
It occupies the entire upper part of the valley, watered by a river that shares its name, descending from Grand Parpaillon in a northwesterly direction, to end at the Durance at the foot of Embrun. The valley borders to the north with Pic Saint-André (2857 m) and Pic de Chabrières (2746 m), to the east with Pic de Crévoux (2644 m) and Pointe de l’Eyssina (2837 m), and towards the south, the Great Parpaillon (2990 m) and Ratelle ridge (2572 m).
There is a huge contrast between the right slope, with exposed rock formations, and the left slope, a wooded area dominated by conifers. The valley is steep and inhospitable. The Chalp area, on the other is a small fertile meadow.
A village with 130 inhabitants, Crévoux has evolved along with skiing and the many different ways of enjoying the snow, preserving the traditions and charm of the area. The Grand Parpaillon, where the villages “la Chalp”, “Praveyral” and “Champ Rond” are nestled, enhance the natural surroundings of the village. Lovers of snowy landscapes will fall under the spell of this magic place to completely escape and forget the hustle and bustle of bigger resorts. A change of scenery, setting and way to enjoy your holidays where calm and peace is guaranteed.
Distribution of the slopes in Crévoux
The alpine ski resort (1550m – 2400m), opened in 1937, is one of the oldest in the Southern Alps. Family-sized resort located in the town of the same name. It has 15 trails (1 black, 5 red, 6 blue, 3 green) over 20 kilometers, served by 5 ski lifts and a “Jardin des Niege” (snowpark). Its management comes from the neighboring Vars resort. At the end of 2010 the last ski lift was installed on the Ratelle ridge, reaching 2550 meters. Nordic skiing is rather popular in the La Chalp area: we found 7 routes for a total of 45 kilometers.
Between 1600 and 2500 meters, the Crévoux ski area has a total of 22 km of slopes. Particularly noteworthy is a blue trail with a 7 km descent from Arête de la Ratelle (highest point in the domain) to the snow front (a must for intermediate skiers). In the lower part of the resort we find the beginner area. A little bit up, a black trail (Les Bousquatiers) and 2 red ones (La Centaurée and l’Edelweiss) will delight the bravest skiers; as well as La Ratelle trail, mandatory visit.
Crévoux has its trails drawn on a natural terrain (some resorts have their’s traced with heavy machinery) and they meander in a forest of conifers, far from the noise; It is practically as if the mountain were for our own private use and enjoyment.
With 900 meters of unevenness, favorable exposure and its lush forests, Crévoux is also a prosperous place for those who want to walk or ride on bike off-piste. Before jumping into the powder, or if we are already getting a bit tired, we find many activities available:
– the DVA (ARVA) park, near the Pré de l’Etoile ski lift, to train and search of a “fictitious” avalanche victim.
– at the DVA control point located at the top of the Pic du Ratel ski lift to verify the correct operation of your own detection and investigation equipment.
Cross-country skiing at Crévoux
Leaving the La Chalp village, the Nordic area of Crévoux has 45 kilometers of cross-country skiing trails (skating and alternative), including the “Coraline” trail named after the local champion Coraline Hugues.
At 1700 m above sea level, the Crévoux Nordic area is made up of 10 trails stretched over 45 km, including 13,5 km accessible for pedestrians and fatbikes, a biathlon stadium and a playground. Its high altitude and favorable exposure guarantee a young, high-quality layer of snow throughout the season.
The resort has a biathlon stadium, as well as teaching courses to learn this odd and unique sport that mixes skiing and target shooting. In fact, Crévoux has a special mini shooting range for those who are learning.
The Nordic offer is completed with some trails reserved for walkers (on foot or with snowshoes), as well as an ice waterfall.
We must remark that due to its location (at the bottom of the valley, 1700 meters above sea level) and its exposure (to the north), the Nordic area of Crévoux / La Chalp generally benefits of a generous snow accumulation.
The resort has a wide cultural offer
The hotel activity is remarkable, in winter for skiing and during summer as a mountain tourism destination: hotels, rural hostels and restaurants. Farming and rural activities are still prevail. Its production is important: milk, natural cheeses (cow-goat or 3 milks) and organic (goat or cow), pure goat tomes and crottins. There are plenty of other kinds of artisanal works, such as stone oven bakeries, artistic carpenters or eco-sustainable construction. The local stock market opens every Monday during summer.
We can also enjoy an artistic, contemporary and poetic route, which has been organized since 2010 from the village: “La cascade de Razis”. Created by the Fées d’Hiver association, has over the years become a true open-air museum in the heart of wild, virgin and native nature.
More than 15000 visitors per year praise the originality of this unusual, innovative and unique project. This artistic project has become a must in the Serre-Ponçon territory over the years, offering walkers many contemporary pieces of art “in situ” on an easy route in a magical natural setting in the bottom of the Crévoux valley.