13 May 2024

Bright and early in the Easter break, sixty snow-seeking students from Years 9 to 12 headed to Manchester Airport accompanied by six members of staff. With their fingers crossed for bluebird powder days and no injuries, the sleepy-eyed group headed for Chambery Airport.

By Miss Holland, Teacher of Physics 

Upon arrival in the village of Montalbert, nestled at the bottom of the La Plagne ski resort, students prepared for an action-packed week of skiing in one of the world’s largest and best ski resorts. Paradiski has 425 km of runs, mostly over 2000 metres elevation, promising some excellent conditions for the week ahead.


On the first morning, students and staff buzzed with anticipation. Due to Mr Taylor having secured an excellent “ski-in-ski-out” location, students were able to dust off their salopettes, wrestle with their boots and gracefully carry their skis all of 40 metres between the kit room door and the piste.


The students were assigned to one of six groups based on their prior skiing experience. Each was introduced to their ski instructor and tentatively set off down the mountain. Every morning ran like clockwork, with students working independently to get kitted up and on the slopes for their instructors’ arrival at 9 a.m. Students were reunited at lunchtime, providing some much-needed respite for tired legs.


The remainder of the ski days ran to much the same tune, students making the most of each and every day out on the slopes, and our wishes were answered with some big snow falls and bluebird mornings!


One third of the students (and one brave member of staff) had little or no skiing experience prior to the trip, but under the expert guidance of their instructors, everyone had the chance to progress at their own pace. Their confidence grew exponentially, with some students rising across multiple groups within the space of a few days. Each student received a learning log at the end of the week detailing the skills they had learned, which will help inform their instructor the next time they take ski lessons.


Despite some minor bumps, bruises and a few upset tummies from excess sugar consumption, everyone returned safely down the mountain each afternoon, all demonstrating excellent resilience and courage.#


Evening activities for the students included the thrilling luge ride, with students chaotically snaking their way down the slope to the hotel. Students also participated in laser quest, swimming, Just Dance, karaoke and of course the main event: Mr Rule’s summary of the days’ best behaviour, best wipeouts and biggest wally awards.


The group returned to Birkenhead thoroughly exhausted after 2 travel days and 6 ski days, all with a new-found or re-kindled adoration for being on the mountain. Equally exhausted, staff had been so impressed with the students’ behaviour and enthusiasm that they were already discussing logistics for the next ski trip during the coach journey home!