£ 110 / HOUR / snowmobile
Once the ski runs have closed for the day, try your hand at driving these 500cc two seater motorbikes built specially for the snow. With the rear wheel replaced with a caterpillar track for momentum and the front wheel swapped for a pair of skis for steering - snowmobiles are incredibly quick and able machines whether snow, ice or even water is put in front of them.
Whether your a beginner or you've done it several times before after some expert instruction and tuition your soon be out on an open country trail enjoying the buzz and adrenalin rush of being in control of a snow scooter through deep powder (when there is some!) and speeding up and down the ski runs in the quiet of a late moon lit evening whilst closely observed by the highly experienced instructors.
|Snowmobiling - Operation times|
|daily - 7 days a week|
|hourly from 5.30pm (1730hrs)|
Rides every evening for beginners and experts. Hourly excursions take place everyday from 1730hrs. The first two hourly excursions are the most popular so pre-booking is essential if you require one of these slots.
|Snowmobiling - lOCATION|
The Snowmobiling company in Meribel is not officially based in Meribel itself, its further up the valley in Meribel Motterat. The exact location of Snowmobiling is in an area of Motterat called La Hammau which is at the very top of Motterat right next to the Perdix ski run where the hotel and apartment buildings finish.
|How to get there from Meribel|
- FREE BUS
The free bus from Meribel can be caught from the bus stop outside the Parc Olympic by La Chaudanne - Meribel's main ski lift area. You will need to catch the Number 3 bus to Motterat and get off at the last stop - Le Hammau. You will know that it is Le Hammau as the bus would have climbed all the way up the hill through Motterat and come to a final stop next to a roundabout. Once off the bus if you look up the hill you will see the Snowmobile office perched at the very end of the apartment building blocks. From here you need to walk up the road with the wooden barrier separating the lanes and then into the car park when the road finishes. Walk to the far end of the car Park and then up the piste on the left hand-side to the Snowmobiling office.
|Snowmobiling - EXCURSIONS, LEVELS AND COSTS PER SNOWMOBILE|
|Discovery Trip - (Beginner / INTERMEDIATE)|
|Discovery Trip - with passenger|
|Passenger with Guide - (Discovery Trip)|
|Sport Trip - (Intermediate / Advanced)|
Before any Snowmobiling excursion commences there is a safety brief followed by a driving test to make sure that everyone in the group has understood all the instructions.
- Discovery Trip - with or without passenger - £110
The Discovery trip, as it suggests is to discover Snowmobiles. It is the Beginner / Intermediate level Snowmobiling excursion. The discovery trip is the only trip that you are allowed to carry passengers on your Snowmobile. To drive a snowmobile you need to be 16+ years old but passengers can be as young as 6/7 as long as they hold on tight and the driver is 18+!
After the driving test you will all follow in a line - keeping a safe distance between you and the Snowmobile in front - STRICTLY NO OVERTAKING. The Discovery trip will take you along ski runs, around mountain restaurants, through gullies and on to a track.
When at the track the passenger is told to get off the Snowmobile and the driver is let loose around the marked out oval. If the passenger is able to drive this is the time to swap over driver duties. The passenger can then drive the journey back to the Snowmobiling Office.
- Passenger with Guide - £40
For those of you that do not want to drive you can ride behind one of the professional guides, but hold on tight as this is one of the fastest and most exciting rides available. You are only allowed to ride behind a guide on a Discovery Excursion.
- Sport Trip - £120
The Sport trip is for those among you that are fuelled by adrenalin! The Sport trip is the Intermediate / Advanced Snowmobiling excursion that allows a maximum 6 bikes out at a time, with 'NO' passengers and only one instructor. As long as all the rules are obeyed i.e. speeds and distances this excursion is one that you will never forget. Powder snow when we have some, driving up embankments, flat-out up the pistes is only a few experiences of driving a Snowmobile that you will encounter. A MUST if you have Quad bike or Jet Ski / bike experience.
- Private Outing - EXTRA £100
For an extra £100 you can ensure that you have no-one else on your excursion to spoil it for you.
|Snowmobiling - Duration and Format|
|20 minutes organisation of equipment / Safety Instructions and brief|
|50-60 minutes driving|
|5 minutes handing in equipment|
When you arrive at the Snowmobiling office 10 minutes before your allocated time the Snowmobiling operator will ask you for a Credit Card. The credit card is for the operating companies own insurance. They will take a blank swipe of your card incase you cause damage to their machine, this means that they have the ability to take payment for it. The Snowmobiling company off an insurance that covers damage to the bike in excess of 400€ (the first 400€ will need to be paid) - but it could save a 4000€ bill. the cost of the insurance is included in the Whitetracks price.
It is now time to get your helmets fitted you will need to grab yourself a hair net for hygiene reasons and then find a helmet that fits. As soon as you all have helmets it will be time for your instruction and safety brief - Pay close attention to the brief as the operator has total right to cut your Snowmobiling session short or not let you take part at all - if you do not obey the instructions.
When the safety brief has finished you will be told to find yourself a Snowmobile. The Instructor will then perform one final check to make sure that you all understood how to maneuver and place yourselves over the bike during different Snowmobile driving situations. When the instructor is ready he will then call you one at a time and put you all through a driving test. Once everyone has passed the test it will be time for your chosen Snowmobiling excursion. Your chosen excursion whether Sport or Discovery trip will last 50-60 minutes.
When the excursion finishes you will need to hand back the helmets and throw the hair nets in the bin. If 'NO' damage has been caused then you will need to collect your credit card details from the operating company and then make your way home.
|Snowmobiling - Operation / Restrictions|
|alcohol must not be consumed before Snowmobiling!|
|DO NOT DRIVE - Heart, Vascular & Vertebral problems or Pregnant|
|Driver - Minimum age 16|
|Passenger - Minimum age 6/7|
Snowmobiles are very heavy pieces of machinery that can cause heavy stress on the arms and upper body. Please be careful and drive with caution
|Snowmobiling - Equipment Supplied|
The Snowmobiling company supplies hair nets for you to wear for hygiene purposes under the helmet that is also supplied. The wearing of a helmet whilst taking part in the Snowmobiling activity is compulsory.
Some of the helmets have visors BUT the majority don't! There are no rules or safety instructions saying that you need to wear goggles and many people prefer not to. Please bring goggles if you decide not to wear them you can.
|Snowmobiling - Suggested items|
|Dress Warm - Ski Clothing - Jackets, Ski Pants, Gloves, Goggles|
|Good sturdy boots - walking boots or snowboard boots|
|'no' ski boots!|
Dress for what could be an extremely cold evening - its more comfortable being hot that being very cold. In Mid-Winter, December, Jan and February all the excursions including the 5.30pm (1730hrs) will be in the dark under moonlight and Snowmobile headlamps. Temperatures could be as low as -35°c with the wind chill factor. In March and April when the days are getting longer and lighter, the start of the 6.30pm excursion could be in daylight and much warmer.
|Snowmobiling - Staff / instructors / Numbers|
|discovery trip - 2 instructors|
|sport trip - 1 instructor|
|12 snowmobiles - discovery trip with passengers 24 people maximum|
|sport trip 5 snowmobiles maximum - No passengers|
Every Snowmobiling excursion is accompanied by a Qualified Guide / Instructor the Discovery trip has 2, one leading the group and one racing up and down the line making sure that everyone is behaving themselves.
The instructor guides are in contact with each other every step of your excursion via radio headsets
|Snowmobiling - EQUIPMENT SPECIFICATIONS|
- Weight of Machine - heavy
- Engine specs - acceleration 0-60, torque, horsepower etc
- skis to steer
- caterpillar track for momentum
- Thumb throttle