Mercantour National Park - Alpes-Maritimes. To do this backcountry in the Alpes-Maritimes you need a guide and two cars or a friendly taxi service .. we took the 2 car option for the 15km (one way) mountain drive up to the village of Roya on the M61 following the Vallon de Roya the day before and leaving one of the cars at the car park by the church.
Up to the top of Auron using the Las Donnas drop down to the chair Abris and back to the top at 2474 m and then Le Maeva restaurant (2250 M) before taking a bit of the "traverse Colombier" then the drop off into the unknown of the Vallon de Lugiere and the way to ROYA.
Las Donnas (2474 m) - Roya (1500 m). This short backcountry run gave us "February powder" for the first 600m of descent from Las Donnas. The last snow dating back to 5 days, everything seemed settled, the light 1m of powder a joy. For the next 600m it was mixed some times light then a crusty section where the edge was doing it's best to dig it's self in, before the last 200m above the hamlet of Roya we will call it .. a bit damp!
When snowboarding off-piste, watch for fence lines when you get onto the lower alpine pastures, as this is where the cows and sheep will be enjoying the same mountain air later on in the year.
Time to dry out the socks and have some lunch in the sun before the last few hundred metres and the church where we left the car the day before.. yes it was still parked in the same place.written : 2016 / latest update : 2021