Monday, 18 February 2008

Val T to Pralognan

Making the most of a day off, a stable forecast and Ginny's much improving knee we headed out for a gentle days touring on Saturday on the classic Col de Gebroulaz to Pralognan route.
This starts with a quick skin from the Val Thorens lifts up to the Col de Gebroulaz at 3434m with a classic backdrop of the Ecrins on the skyline:

As with much of Val Thorens the Col was very wind affected, with bare glacier ice showing through where normally there is only snow...

The descent to Pralognan branches right from the normal Gebroulaz Glacier descent at about 3000m and heads down into a huge playground with a slopes of every angle, and plenty of differing slope aspects giving a good choice of snow conditions.

Part way down the descent we came across a fantastic set of raised animal tracks (Chamois?):

The descent passes the Refuge du Roc de la Peche in the valley floor, a great place to stop for lunch, and home to possibly the largest St Bernard in the world (the picture does it no justice...):

An easy slide down the snowed up road leads under the Roc de Valette and back to Pralognan, we were lucky to see a couple of Chamois and a pair of Lammergeier vultures high overhead:

All in all a great day out.

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