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Just got back from an Easter break in Val d'Isere/Tignes. Since we last went in December, they've started putting up signs by the start of runs.

On Good Friday, we saw a sign at the bottom of the chair saying (in French) "Caution: black run, expert skiers only". We are by no means expert, but we new this black run had been graded red the previous year, and we could see all of it from the bottom of the chair. So we ignored the sign, and it was the easiest black we've done (Col de Ves).

Later than afternoon we saw the same sign at the top of another black (Silene). We ignored the sign again; while it was the hardest run we've done because it was very bumpy, it wasn't dangerous (and there was a pisted red close by for anyone who couldn't stand any more moguls).

On Saturday, we saw a new sign at the top of yet another black (Epaule de Chauvet). This said, in 3 langauges, "Expert skiers only: steep black piste with possibility of dangerous falls". That would have put us off, except our instructor had said it would be a good run to practice on. So we ignored the sign and found no obvious possibility of dangerous falls (the snow was dreadful - the biggest risk was stones in the mud).

Sunday the weather was very poor, and we stuck to easier things.

Then on Monday, we saw another sign at the top of a very nice and quite steep red (Cyclamen) "Hard snow: good skiers only". We'd got blase about these signs by now and ignored it... and boy, did we get a shock! By far the most frightening skiing we'd done, in terms of the potential to fall a long way on very hard-packed snow.

They are trying too hard. If the only warning sign had been the last one, we would have paid attention to it.