The Campiglio Ski region is comprised of 4 ski areas: Groste, Spinale, Cinque Laghi and Pradalago.
Groste Ski Area
The main lifts for the Groste area are a bit further away from the centre of Madonna di Campiglio but it's still a useful
area to head for as it shares a bridge with the Fortini Express chairlift that takes you up to the Pradalogo area.
Get the gondola up from the Groste base station. and go up to the Stoppani restaurant.
Two blues go down from the top number 17 and 19 with the Ursus Snow Park sandwiched in between.
This is a fantastic area in the afternoon if it's sunny, with plenty of nice wide pistes with a series of drops and flat
sections that are ideal for beginners and early intermediates.
Others will love cruising these, with the Pietra Grande Mountains dominating over you to the right - a fantastic sight.
Run 19 merges into 17 and this continues in the same vain down to the Graffer restaurant.
There is a modern chairlift here, the Groste express to take you up to the areas highest point - 2504m.
From here he can take blue 17 and drop down to the aforementioned Stoppani restaurant or take reds 18 or 20 back down to the
Graffer restaurant. Both these reds can be quite nice and quiet as skiers only access them if they've got on the Groste express chairlift.
There's just one run down from the Graffer and that's the blue number 17 down to the Groste gondola mid station at Boch.
Again, as with the blues above it, this is a lovely wide run, great for sharpening your technique and practising nice wide turns.
Can be a bit busier here because three pistes have now converged into one, but as with most runs in Madonna it's not too busy.
From Boch, skiers have two options - red 21 that heads straight back down to the foot of the Vagliana chairlift,
or blue 22 that traverses over to meet up with blue 26 coming down from the top of the Spinale area.
If you cruise over blue 22 then you can get on the Boch chairlift and get into Spinale's lovely red run (number 27).
Alternatively, stay on 22 and come down to the foot of the Vagliana chair.
This section of 22 is quite narrow and beginners should get ready for a choppy run late in the day when so many skiers
have carved up such a narrow run, especially the steep bit at the bottom.
Red 21 also comes down directly to this point from Boch, a nice run down with some great views on a clear day.
There are two chairlifts down at this point the Vagliana chair takes you up to DOsson di Vagliana and is well worth the trip
because it's the only way to get to piste 23 - a red - it can be extremely quiet so its a great option if you're looking to
progress from blues but possibly wary of testing yourself on a busy slope.
The other chairlift from this point is the Rododendro Express, a covered 4 man chair that whisks you back up to a point above
the Graffer restaurant, a lovely ride by the way, with fantastic views of both Pietra Grande and Cima Brenta.
Back at the base of the Vagliana and the Rododendro chairs, there's one piste down - number 24. It starts and ends fantastically,
cruising down the tree-lined route. However, there's a section towards the end where the gradient flattens out too much and you
come to a disappointing stop, no matter how much speed you seem to get on the approach to it. A few minutes shuffling along and
you're off again until you come out above the Campo Carlo Magno nursery areas. You can connect back on to a path to take you
back to the base of the Groste gondola lift but be warned that there's more shuffling involved!
An alternative is to take the Nube d'Argento 2-man chairlift up to the Montagnole Restaurant.
From here you can take the red 31 back to the Groste base or go down blues 30 and 32 back to Groste base,
although it flattens out at the end.
Monte Spinale Ski Area
The Spinale area is a decent starting point if you're based in or around Madonna di Campiglio's centre - take the Spinale Express gondola up
from it's base station near the centre of town, it's just above the park and the outdoor ice-rink.
There are 4 options from the top of Monte Spinale - black 25 goes right the way down to the base of the gondola.
It's a nice run down, be prepared for the classic town ending though - i.e. no run off area, it just goes from black to a short finish.
There's a chairlift (Spinale 2) halfway down the route that takes you back up, so anyone getting halfway down black 25 and then having
second thoughts about completing it has get-out clause to get back to the top.
So apart from this long black, what are the other options from the top of Monte Spinale ? Well, there's a blue 26 that meets up with
blue 22 (discussed in more detail in the Groste section), it has a couple of quite steep sections but is often surprisingly quiet, probably
because of the number of pistes starting from Spinale.
Two more of these pistes are reds (no 27) that join up after a few minutes skiing. It's a lovely run, starting in the open and
then shooting down into the trees. There are a couple of blues you can detour off into but 27 is such a nice run that most skiers
stay on it and head back to the base of Spinale, via short blue 33 (right at the end of the run) or off down red 30 so that it
comes out at the Groste gondola, where you can either go up to Groste or cross the bridge and get the lift up to Pradalogo.
But Hang on ! We nearly forgot to mention the final option from the top of Spinale - black 28 that leads down onto red 27,
with the option of another short (but steep) black just before the Montagnoli restaurant.
Cinque Laghi Ski Area
You'll see this area referred to as both Cinque Laghi and 5 Laghi (Cinque is 5 in Italian, for those who didn't realise !)
To get up to this area take the 5 Laghi Express gondola from the centre of Madonna di Campiglio (and we mean centre - it's just off
the main square, one of those fantastic sights you get in a ski town - a gondola rising up into the snow above the roof tops).
The views from the top are amazing.
We found this area to be the quietest of Madonna di Campiglio's four ski areas, and possibly the prettiest, with some
great little runs down through the trees, nothing to dramatic, long or difficult, just generally pleasant !
Anyway, where do you start from up at the top once you step off the 5 Laghi Express gondola ?
Well, there's a blue no 1 that basically goes right down into town - it's an interesting start from
up at the Cinque Laghi restaurant, the blue sweeps round and down quite steeply, with netting on the side, slightly off-putting
for nervy beginners but it's only a short section. There's also a short black that goes down from the other side of the restaurant,
both meet up and head into the trees. There are some delightful sweeping pistes to cruise down through the trees until you eventually
reach the Patascoss Restaurant.
Pradalago Ski Area
Pradalago is another great area for intermediates, with a whole host of red and blue pistes. It's also the area which gives access
to the lifts and slopes of neighbouring Folgarida and Marilleva. If the sun's out and shining then its a good area to head to in
the morning as it gets the early rays.
There are two ways up to the Pradalago, the fastest is via the Pradalago Express gondola from near the centre of town,
the other way is to use the Fortini Express chairlift, the base of which is a really useful area as it's connected to the
Groste Express gondola via a bridge. Ski down the bridge from the Fortini side to Groste or if going the other way get on the
handy travelator and it moves you up the bridge. Both methods take you to a similar point, the Pradalago gondola takes you
to the Pradalago restaurant, the Fortini chair takes you to the Viviani restaurant. Both sit alongside each other with just a
short section of blue piste separating them. From the top of the Pradalago gondola there's blue 7 that takes you down to
Viviani and onto all the reds and blues, there's also a black, no 6 that drops right down through the trees to the edge
of town and meets up with blue 10. Back up at Viviani the slopes are wide and open above the main tree line.
Be aware that many of the kids ski schools progress up to here from the main nursery slopes down at Campo Carlo Magno,
so you can get a few processions up here, but the slopes are big enough to soak them up. Blue 7 is the main slope of the area
going from the top right down to the foot of the Fortini Express chairlift.
There are a number of blues and reds off this blue, with some giving access to the Malghette chairlift up to Monte Vigo,
giving access in turn to Folgarida and Marilleva.