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EXCLUSIVE UKC 2013 OFFER IN ARIÈGE! FEB, MARCH, MAY, OCTOBER, NOVEMBER AND DECEMBER
Torn between a week on the pistes and a winter sun-rock break?
Now you can do both, without ever needing to drive more than 20 minutes from our converted village farmhouse. When it snows you’ll be sure of great conditions on the slopes, and when it doesn’t the settled sunny weather will be perfect for climbing in t-shirts on the dozens of low-lying sheltered sport crags. You could even do both on the same day!
COOL WINTER SNOWSPORTS
20km up the valley from Chez Arran is the ski town of Ax les Thermes, with fast gondola access to over 75km of pistes from 1,400m to 2,400m (http://www.ax-ski.com/index.php?lang=en ). There’s something for everyone, from gentle open slopes to off-piste tree-runs, and the extensive network of snow cannon will ensure there’s always plenty of snow. It’s good value too – last season a one-day lift pass cost only 31 € and if you took the SkiRail train between chez Arran and Ax les Thermes you got both train and lift tickets for less. At those prices the cool après-ski beer tastes so much better!
The Plateau de Beille ( http://www.beille.fr ) is the Pyrenees’ premier cross country ski venue. At over 1,800m and just 20 minutes drive from home, no less than 70km of beautifully maintained circuits will delight and challenge Nordic skiers of all abilities. You’ll also find many marked snowshoe trails here and for something very different why not treat yourself to a Nordic dog sled ride?
Away from the resorts there’s plenty more fun to be had in the mountains. We have guide-books full of dozens of great snow-shoe routes, there’s virtually unlimited ski-touring potential (with winter refuge options) and for more vertical fare there’s good ice climbing too.
Why not relax afterwards in the new thermal spa at Ax ( http://www.bains-couloubret.com ) or the one closer to home at Ussat les Bains?
WARM WINTER ROCK
Within 15 minutes of our Chez Arran farmhouse are over 15 fantastic limestone, granite and gneiss climbing sites ranging from single pitch gems to 350m big wall extravaganzas. Climbs start at just 2a and go right through to 8c+/9a (in the 35m+ overhanging Grotte de Sabart). There is great granite bouldering too at Laramade and at Orlu. You can climb all year round here, with some of the best conditions found in midwinter on the many South-facing sheltered limestone crags. The sun is so warm we often find ourselves climbing and belaying in t-shirts.
There are online topos to most of the crags at http://cafma.free.fr/plan.htm For winter warmth the best crags to check out are Génat, Calamès and Sinsat, the last of these being just 20-30 min walking distance from chez Arran.
We have a spacious 2-bedroom gîte (‘Maison La Montagne’) sleeping up to 7, and a 1-bedroom gîte (‘Apartment Lézard’) sleeping up to four, both with superb mountain views and both available for weekly rental. Flexible mid week, weekend and longer rental is possible according to availability. The large tranquil garden has fig and walnut trees, wisteria, rose and elderflower.
The 2000m Pyrenean peaks rise from our spa village of Ornolac Ussat les Bains, and the region’s fascinating Cathar culture, Romanesque castles, impressive show caves and inexhaustible history will enrich any visit. Local markets at Foix and St Girons are worth seeing, and we have a large collection of guidebooks, maps and local info to help you get the most out of your stay.
Book before the end of May to receive our special offers. Book more than 1 week and get 10% off. Click http://www.chezarran.com/ContactUs.php to make an online enquiry
or for email click email@example.com
What else is on offer?
• Airport pickups
• Bike hire
• Crag accompaniment and expert climbing advice
• Long weekend mountain escapes
• Spa treks around Ax les Thermes and snowshoeing with qualified International Mountain Leaders, Anne and Ruth
• Multi-activity adventure days or weeks
Come and join us. Find out – like we did – what a beautiful corner of Europe this really is.
What our guests said:
"Just a quick note to thank you both very much for arranging such perfect weather for our visit last week!! We all had a great time and I know that all of us would have no hesitation in recommending ChezArran to friends from the GMC & CMC"
“The kids were saying it’s the best holiday they’ve ever had.”
“Just to say many thanks for your hospitality. We had a lovely week and it was really good to see a slice of French rural life we thought had disappeared years ago! Nice house, nice area, nice pool, good crags with a spread of grades to keep us all happy.”
Alan, Christine, Sophie and Holly
“Just a quick post to say thanks for an excellent week at Chez Arran - the accommodation, climbing and people all combined to make an extremely enjoyable and memorable holiday; we'll certainly be looking to come back soon! The coaching was superb and directly responsible for us both improving by at least a grade (2 in Clare's case)- thanks again“.
Iain & Claire
From Toulouse airport follow signs first for Montpelier, then for Foix. Click here for a useful map showing the route around Toulouse.There will be signs to Foix both by the motorway ('péage') or by the non-toll roads (Route Nationale, or R.N.). As you would expect the motorway (which at the time of writing costs 5€ in each direction) is easier and quicker, usually by about 30 minutes. As you near Foix stay on the main road, following signs for Andorre. About 15km after the Foix bypass tunnel the dual-carriageway ends at a large roundabout on the edge of Tarascon-sur-Ariège. Follow directions from Tarascon roundabout below.
Instead of hiring a car you can get from Toulouse airport to chez Arran by train. The station Toulouse Matabiau is directly served by the Airport - Town Centre buses, which usually leave every 20 minutes. Click here to find train times and prices between Toulouse and our local station at Ussat-les-Bains. The train journey takes 2-3 hours depending on the time of day, there's a change at Pamiers, and it currently costs €15 for a single. From Ussat-les-Bains station it's only 10-15 minutes on foot but if you let us know in advance we'll come and collect you. With enough advance notice we may also be able to pick people up from Toulouse or Carcassone airports; contact us for availability and prices if you're thinking of doing this.
From Tarascon roundabout continue following signs to Andorre, past several smaller roundabouts, for about 4 kilometres more until you see a turn-off on the left signed to Ornolac-Ussat-Les Bains. Take this, then 200m later turn right at the T junction (by the thermal spa). After about 800m the small road turns sharply left and weaves into an open square - park here. Immediately past the square (house with 1897 on), on the left, is the tiny street/driveway of Quartier de Bacquié. If you walk into this you will see chez Arran, the rightmost of the building(s) immediately in front of you with 2 metal lizards on the wall. Welcome!