Monthly Archives: December 2014

Hogmanay Touring

Colin, Rob, Kev: Final push to the summit

Location: Col de la Forclaz
Snow: 15-20cm powder, lots wind-affected, some rocks
Weather: Bluebird above the clouds

The final day of the year and my first real ski tour of the winter.  Up to Col de la Forclaz (1527m, the highest col between Chamonix and Martigny, just over the Swiss border) and on to the peak before Pointe Ronde –… [continue reading]

Not Bad In Italy

Lorne: Preparing to drop into the Youla couloir

Location: Courmayeur
Snow: Good/firm pistes; variable off-piste
Weather: Sun & some wind, cold

Back to Courmayeur today to try to make the most of the new snow.  The Val Veny and Zerotta lifts still aren’t open so we parked at Dolonne and lapped the same areas as last week but in better snow.

The pistes were skiing pretty nicely but… [continue reading]

Quick One

View from halfway down Cornu, one of the less bumpy sections

Location: Brevent
Snow: Soft/bumpy/rocky on & off piste
Weather: Sun & hazy cloud, cold

Cold temperatures and mixed skies were forecast today, so I wasn’t going to ski but finished off some work by 2pm and headed up Brevent anyway seeing as it’s right on my doorstep.  Alone today, with most friends either working or unmotivated.

The main Savoy drag… [continue reading]

Powder

Rob: Forgetting to smile but trust me, he was having fun here

Location: Les Houches
Snow: 25-35cm powder
Weather: Cloudy with bright spells, light snowfall

New snow at last, much to the delight of most of the Chamonix Valley.  Everything was shut yesterday due to the amount of snow and very high avalanche risks but Grands Montets, Le Tour and Les Houches partially opened today and we opted for Les Houches for… [continue reading]

Not So Good

Graham & Colin: Top of the hill

Location: Grands Montets
Snow: A dusting of fresh snow; mid-mountain still firm, better up high
Weather: Mostly sunny, colder than yesterday

Not so good today, but after a cracking Christmas dinner last night (thanks Graham & Dawn), a quick mid-morning trip up the hill was still worthwhile to keep the ski legs going.

One lap off Bochard into Lavancher Bowl… [continue reading]

Christmas Day Hotdogging

Rob & Lorne: Oldschool moves for Christmas

Location: Grands Montets
Snow: Firm on piste; firm/chalky/soft off piste
Weather: Sunny then cloudy, still feeling warm

After a full day of hungover rest yesterday (thanks guys, I hate you, but really I love you) I was ready for some Christmas skiing today.  Not the best snow conditions I’ve had on Christmas at all, but a really fun one just… [continue reading]

Happy Birthday To Me

Kev: Dropping into the Youla couloir on the first lap

Location: Courmayeur
Snow: Some perfect & some firm/icy on piste; powdery/crusty/heavy off piste
Weather: Bluebird, warm

Turning 30 isn’t so bad when you can have a good fun day like this in Italy, definitely the best birthday ski I’ve had in years.  Rob had been in Courmayeur yesterday with his family and replied to my text last night asking if… [continue reading]

Training Day

Gabe, Graham, Kev: Nice late-afternoon light for a quick crevasse rescue drill

Location: Grands Montets
Snow: Pistes chalky at best, mostly firm/icy; off piste thin & heavy mid-mountain
Weather: Some hazy cloud

No, not fitness training.  What do you take me for, an “athlete”?  Safety training this afternoon; maybe the best way to spend your time on the hill in these snow conditions to make sure your skills are up to scratch… [continue reading]

Opening Day

Kev: Returning from the back side

Location: Grands Montets
Weather: Bluebird, mild, some wind up high
Snow: Firm/icy on piste; 10cm powder off piste (some slightly crusty) on a smooth base, open crevasses

Chamonix’s lifts are now open, two weeks later then planned and only certain lifts (some Grands Montets, some Le Tour and the Midi) but they’re open.  Temperatures are pretty warm and more snow… [continue reading]

Cloudy Resort Day

Colin, Rob, Sandy, Laurent: Returning to town

Location: Verbier
Snow: Firm pistes, rough off-piste
Weather: Overcast & windy

Still waiting for the snow to really hit Chamonix, so back to Verbier today for what we hoped would be some nice sunny resort laps.  Unfortunately the weather turned out far worse than forecast, starting cloudy and ending up completely overcast and a bit windy.  Still, some good fun… [continue reading]

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