Friday, 12 March 2010

Vanoise Day Tours

This week I have been running a combination training/touring week for the Eagles Ski Club. With exceedingly cold weather early in the week the camera didn't make it out much, and with very strong winds the snow had been left in a bit of a state... Good conditions for the team to build their skills in though!
Some short trips to the Mont du Chat, Pointe Emilienne took us well off the beaten track off piste, and a day in La Plagne, although probably the coldest of the week, saw some good snow high up in the Friolin, and also in the Arriérés combe on the way back to Champagny.

Yesterday, with warmer weather forecast, we skinned up to the Petit Mont Blanc.
On the shoulder into les Avals:

Great views of the Vanoise (L to R: Gde Gliere, Epena, Gde Casse):

The last section to the summit:

The Table D'Orientation is a work of art:

Roger, Nic, Phil & Neil on the summit of the Petit Mont Blanc:

And finding some reasonable conditions on the way down:

On a note of caution to the masses who ski the Les Avals valley without avalanche kit (and one would therefore assume without taking conditions into account) here are a couple of shots on both sides of Le Biol - through which everyone has to pass -

East face:

West face:

And for a bit of scale on the debris:

Having found some good spring snow for a few turns off the south side of the summit, today we went in search of more spring snow (and found it!).

At the top of the Combe Sans Nom:

And finding some great spring snow on the top slopes:

And further down:

The top 500m seen from near Grosse Tete:

Leaving all the tracks taking the higher exit we headed right of Grosse Tete for another 500m vertical of great spring snow - this bowl is great as you can play wioth the slope aspect to keep finding good snow...:

Negotiating the tight passage at Les Teppes:

Handy signpost:

The chapel of Notre Dame des Anges:

Nice spot for a picnic before the skin back up to the Orelle lifts:

A big thank you to Nic, Tanya, Phil, Neil and Roger for persevering with tough conditions early in the week - it certainly paid off over the last couple of days!!

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