J2Ski New Zealand J2Ski logo
°F / in / ft / miles°C / cm / m / km
FacebookTwitter

Barèges

Barèges Ski Resort Guide

Barèges, France

Rated: 3/5 (from 6 ratings)

Ski Area Highlights
Recommended ForBeginners, Snowboarders, Snowfall and Apres-Ski!
Total Piste Length120km
Highest Lift2,350m
Resort Height1,250m
 Nearest AirportsLourdes and Pau
Save Money on Ski Hire Save up to 50% 
Free Snow Reports by e-Mail  Sign Up Here

Barèges

Part of the largest ski area in the Pyrenées, known for its reasonable prices. Lift-linked to La Mongie and with an altitude station satellite, Super Barèges, at 1800 M.

Summary

The French ski resort of Barèges is in the French Pyrenees at an altitude of 1,250m, with 120km of marked runs.

Barèges is part of the Tourmalet ski area with access to 240km of downhill skiing, with 138 marked pistes, served by a total of 43 ski lifts. In addition to the skiing in Barèges itself (120km of pisted ski runs), the appropriate ski Lift Pass will allow you to ski or snowboard in the other Tourmalet ski resort of La Mongie. Barèges is directly linked by Ski Lift to the ski areas of La Mongie.

With ski lifts as high as 2,350m, snow cover is generally reliable.

Snow and Weather

When will it snow in Barèges?

The next notable snow forecast is 2cm, expected on 1 December, with around 105cm forecast over the next 7 days.

See our long-range Snow Forecast for the latest update, or   Join our Snow Mail Here

Snow this week

Snow Forecast by day for Barèges
MonTueWedThuFriSatSun
Snow
to
1,484m
Snow
to
resort
Snow
to
resort
Snow
to
resort
Snow
to
resort
Snow
to
resort

Ski Area Stats

Barèges Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
 5 15km
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
2331km
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
2031km
Green Pistes
Beginner Runs
2223km
Downhill
Total Length
120km
Cross Country
Total Length
10km
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts
47

Tourmalet Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
10
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
40
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
41
Green Pistes
Beginner Runs
47
Downhill
Total Length
240km
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts
43

Altitudes

Barèges Ski Area Heights

Lift Heights and Resort Altitude
Highest Lift2,350m
Lowest Piste1,250m
Resort Altitude (Barèges)1,250m
Max Vertical1,100m

Ratings & Suitability

Ratings for Barèges
Intermediate Skiers
Beginners
Snowboarding
Snow
Apres-Ski

Barèges Overview

Barèges is an old Roman spa town famous for its thermal springs. Napoleon III built a military hospital here so that his battle weary troops could benefit from the healing waters. Barèges Thermes are still open today and are kept busy in winter by skiers who go there to have their muscles soothed by the hot sulphuric water after a hard day on the slopes. Due to the thermal springs and its altitude (its the highest spa town in France), Barèges is a year round resort with crowds coming here to enjoy the natural healing spas which can soothe many ailments, especially arthritis and rheumatism.

The village itself has a quaint medieval feel - it has one main street which lengthens each year as the village develops. The skiing is made up mainly of wooded trails and valleys making it one of the prettier resorts in the Pyrenees. Barèges was one of the first ski resorts to open in the area, becoming popular in the early 1900's for its cross country trails. It was only in the 1920's that ski lifts were installed and the resort really got started. Situated at the foot of the Pic du Midi de Bigorre, Barèges is connected to La Mongie by the Col du Tourmalet which makes this one of the largest skiing areas in the Pyrénées with over 120km of piste.

During the summer the Col du Tourmalet, and the steep climb up from Barèges and over to La Mongie is one of the most challenging sections in the Tour de France, the world famous cycle race. The route they use is the same track which makes such a good downhill piste in winter.

The 2 villages could'nt be more different, La Mongie is a concrete purpose-built resort with wide, fairly steep treeless slopes, its name translates as 'the eating place' - in the summer it is used as pastureland for sheep and cattle.

Lourdes, famous for its modern day Catholic shrine to Our Lady, is one of the closest major towns. At Easter time the airport is filled with a mixture of skiers heading for the Pyreneen resorts and religious groups making the annual pilgrimage to the healing waters.

 Notable Ski Runs

The longest possible descent in Barèges is 8km long and the most difficult run is the 'Coume d'Ayne'.

Skiing

Barèges links with neigbouring La Mongie to make up one of the biggest skiing areas in the Pyrenees and just as the villages are in complete contrast, so is the skiing. La Mongie has steep, wide open treeless slopes while

Barèges is very typically Pyreneen with its picturesque wooded trails. There is a good variety of terrain in Barèges which has skiing for every level. Its nursery area at La Laquette is easily accessible - only a short gondola ride up from the top of the main street. There is a weekly torchlight descent from here down into the village.

This area has everything you could want, its wide and very gently sloping in a naturally sunny spot with restaurant nearby. Once beginners are turning and feeling more confident they are spoilt for choice with so many easy greens and gently blues. When snow conditions allow, the long, very easy green through the trees back to Bareges from Tournaboup makes a brilliant last run of the day and is something beginners aim to achieve within the first week.

Le Lienz is a small valley at the top of the Lienz chairlift where there is a gently green slope surrounded by attractive wooded slopes. More experienced skiers should take the lift up from here to the Pic d'Ayre where the Lienz forest has some challenging reds as well as a long black run.

The La Mongie side has some challenging runs with the Prade Berde, a steep black being the most difficult. Skiers who enjoy off-piste and powder shouldn't be disappointed with this area although to find the best skiing its worth booking a guide. Ecoloski do about 80% of their lessons on off-piste and powder and its probably worth booking yourself in with them to get the most from your skiing.

Barèges offers good sking, particularly, for Intermediate and Beginner skiers.

Snowboarding

The Tourmalet has a long association with snowboarding and regularly hosts major competitions such as the Quiksilver Cup which is held here in March every year. The competition involves the 2 disciplines of surfing both on snow and water with the water section held in the gigantic surf of the nearby Atlantic coast.

La Mongie has a boardercross course and there is a snowpark with half-pipe at the top of the Bernais chairlift - thats on the right looking up from the village towards the Col du Tourmalet. Getting around is no problem for boarders with chairlifts all the way from Barèges over to La Mongie. There are good beginner areas around La Laquette although the long green back to to Barèges from Tournaboup is very flat and best avoided by boarders.

There is open cruising all around the area and plenty off-piste. Excellent powder and off-piste on the north facing slopes at La Mongie.

Location and Map

Where is Barèges?

This ski resort is in the French Pyrenees in Tourmalet, Hautes-Pyrénées.

Map

Tap Show Map in Full Screen for Full-Screen, or see J2Ski's Resort map, showing Hotels and Ski Shops.

How to get there

 By Air

The nearest airport to Barèges is Lourdes, 50 minutes drive away.

Pau, Toulouse, Biarritz, San Sebastián and Carcassonne airports are all within three hours drive.

Lourdes is just one hours drive away, in good driving conditions, so you can be on the piste quickly.

Infrastructure

Ski Lift Capacity

The 47 ski lifts are able to uplift 44,000 skiers and snowboarders every hour.

Snow Making

Snow-making is available, on 50km of ski runs, with 170 snow cannons.

Season Dates

When is Barèges open?

 Opened : 28 November 2020*
*Tourmalet.

 Closes : 3 April 2021*
*Tourmalet.

Usual opening is early December, and usual closing is Early April.

NOTE:- Ski area, lift and piste opening is subject to Current Snow Conditions.

COVID-19 / Coronavirus

We don't yet have specific details of the COVID-19 precautions being taken in Barèges, but they are likely to include most of the following :-

  • Face masks required on lifts, and in shops.
  • Social distancing in public areas.
  • Reduced lift capacity.
  • Extensive disinfection / sanitization.

French Ski Resort COVID-19 Measures describes further measures that may also be applied.

Visit the Barèges Tourist Office for the latest.

Talking about Barèges

Mentions in recent J2Ski News Items and Snow Reports from our users...

Aprés Ski

The apres ski in Bareges can be as quiet or lively as you want to make it. If you do choose to go for the lively option theres the Pub l'Oncet, L'Isba and the Cafe Richelieu. The Show Time club Jonathan is probably the most popular night spot, it opens to 3am in the week, 5am at weekends.

One of the main events of a holiday in Barèges has to be a torchlight descent organised by Ecoloski from one of the mountain restaurants. At the end of the day you ski to the restaurant for drinks and then enjoy a 5 course dinner of local specialities after which comes the torchlit descent back to the village. This involves being lead by an instructor through forest trails back down to the village - whilst carrying a flaming torch.

There are dog sledding excursions and these can be at night as well as during the day.

Barèges