A Day Trip to Valle Nevado from Santiago City
HURRAY!!!!! Finally the wait for winter has finished. Valle Nevado is OPEN!
Report by Chino Martinez – Professional Skier
Saturday 29th June, 2019
After weeks of waiting for our best part of the year – YES! ‘WINTER” has arrived!
As a ski fanatic living during the winter in Santiago City, what I do all day is look up at the mountains and check how much snow accumulation there is on top!
From Santiago you can see the top of all the ski areas, and at this time of the season, we all get nervous about when we are going to start skiing and where, first!.
From the city to the ski areas you can drive up early morning in one hour or less, if you do so before hitting traffic jams. You will need a 4WD car with winter tyres and/or chains onboard.
I received a phone call from Pablo on Friday evening telling me to get ready as we were going to go up the next morning and were all set, 4WD truck, chains, cameras, drone, filmaker- we were ready to go!
6:45 am on the Saturday and we were ready to go.
We’ve started our trip to Valle Nevado with Pablo, the driver, Xavier, the film-maker, Roberta the TV show presenter and myself – the skier.
The road up was not in good shape as we had a storm the night before during all night and lots of rain came down the city. It was at 1.500 m of altitude that we started to see some snow.
Early morning traffic was not that bad, we started with a dark and rainny night in the city but as we are climbed up the turns, we found better light but more snow.
From Santiago to the first little town of Farellones you have to negotiate 40 steep switchback turns.
Once in Farellones you take the only road that takes you to Valle Nevado where you find more steeper turns!
SNOW SNOW SNOW, at this time all you can see is white and rocks, no more trees, as the treeline was left down. A storm was on its way.
From Farellones you have to start counting more curves – starting again from number 1 to number 30 hairpin very steep turns.(see the sign Curva 1 Altitud 2400 m.)
By then you understand how high you are because your ears start popping and your head starts feeling it.
There is a great sky is on its way, good snow but a little stormy!
A couple of more turns and we found a big sign saying “ABRIMOS! VALLE NEVADO WE ARE OPEN”.
Almost there! You can tell because the snow accumulation is nice and there is powder snow all over, big machines working on plowing the road for cleaning the last turns all the way to the Hotels.
The next sign says: “Valle Nevado Altitud 3000m”, YEAH we are up there!
The first hotel you can see when arriving is the Puerta del Sol hotel with the typical architecture of Valle Nevado, brown wooden walls up to 18 floors. The ski resort was designed by the same people that made Les Arcs.
Before starting our day skiing and filming, we went to warm up to La Leñera, a very nice place to have a morning coffe and scrambled eggs. It has a very rustic feeling and a great atmosphere.
By 8:45 we were ready to go skiing and film some of our great runs down the slopes.
The mountain is not 100% open, but it will be soon. We had snow coming down all day, and the four of us were happy skiing all day long.
We have been skiing most of the day on the lower part of the mountain due to high winds and the big snowstorm.
By 4 O’clock we were all ready to go home and happy campers!!!
Thanks Valle Nevado for a great day!
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Featured Image: A Day Trip to Valle Nevado from Santiago City. Photo: Valle Nevado on a beautiful night.