Car stuck on piste as driver tries to drop off skier in Pyrénées

The vehicle was discovered stuck part way up the slope when the ski resort opened

The car stuck partly up a piste with a red safety mattress placed on it
A brightly coloured safety mattress was placed on the car to alert skiers
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A driver tried to manoeuvre his car up a ski slope in the Pyrénées to drop off a friend at the top so they could ski down - but became stuck part of the way up, French police have confirmed.

The attempt took place in the ski resort of Gourette, in Eaux-Bonnes near the Pyrénées-Atlantiques/Hautes-Pyrénées border in the early hours of January 31.

Predictably, the vehicle, registered in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region, got stuck in the middle of a piste, and the driver and passenger fled. It was discovered by workers towards 08:00 as they prepared for the slopes to open for the day.

A brightly-coloured safety mattress was placed on it to alert skiers and prevent an accident.

The driver, who is reported to be a local young person, was later found and fined. The vehicle was returned to him with a strong gendarmerie warning not to re-attempt the feat.

The resort managers stated: “You can’t just do anything you like on the slopes.” They said that the incident was the first of its kind at Gourette.

Car on piste alert

A similar story made headlines in January 2022 when a driver in his 80s accidentally found himself in the middle of a red ski slope at Le Markstein ski station in Haut-Rhin, Grand Est.

The white estate car emerged at around 16:00, but the driver said that he had not come on to the piste deliberately.

Later investigations suggested that the driver had accidentally turned the wrong way off the main road, which crisscrosses the ski station, and ended up on a rather steeper route than he had expected.

At the time, director of the ski resort, Thomas Cron, said: “Luckily, the snow was not icy, so the car didn’t slide down too far and the driver got out fine. The gendarmerie were called on-site, and they requested a hospital check-up [for the driver] anyway.”

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