If you are lucky enough to be heading out to Val d’Isère this January, you may get the chance to watch a spot of polo on the snow. The BMW Polo Masters Tour will be returning for its 6th edition in January 2014 and it really is quite a spectacle.

Polo in Val d'Isere

Polo on snow is played with smaller teams than normal, with only 3 players on each side. You may think that the ball on snow would be too difficult for players to spot, but this is rectified by using a larger orange ball. To the uninitiated, you would probably think that the sport lacks the skill and conviction of its grass counterpart, but let me tell you, it is incredibly majestic and makes for a superb show. The action is fast paced and highly technical – the ball is never offside and always stays in the game.

Four polo players competing

4 teams battle it out each year to win the coveted Barmes de l’Ours trophy. The competition is held over a few nights, at the foot of the Face de Bellevarde piste, in a snow covered illuminated arena. Last year’s champions, Barmes de l’Ours, will no doubt be trying to retain their title, but the youth and enthusiasm of the ever improving Hexis team, may be a bigger obstacle to overcome than in previous years.