Another brilliant morning in what is becoming a classic season!

24 February 2016

Wow! That was another pretty special morning with stunning snow, first-tracks, outstanding ambience, and a little adventure thrown in! My team skied a very good warm-up in the Fontaine Froide before opening up a stunning Tour du Charvet via TJ’s Shoulder. The snow was excellent and we had the place to ourselves with just enough vis to chose our line and ski positively. From there we skied a nice run off the Mattis and along the trees before joining Andreas up at the Fornet. We arrived on the top of the Signal with decent light so I dove into the Grand Vallon for another atmospheric ski with virgin snow and solitude. We cut a trail out and then skied the Combe du Signal, which was also superb but by this time we needed to ‘sniff’ about to find clean snow.

Andreas went straight up to the Fornet and had a brilliant morning, profiting with the opening of the Signal and Combe du Signal, while Thomas and Henry started Bellevarde-way and worked their way to the Fornet via the Tour. Chris was skiing with Michiel while introducing Michiel’s wife to the joys of off-piste skiing, and all the boys showed their teams some magnificent skiing!

We had a little adventure coming out of the tour as I knew Bernard G from the ESF had cut underneath us and skied the more classic tour out to the right. When we arrived at the little gorge I met up with his tracks and followed them out for the last few hundred metres. When I arrived at the corner where we re-group before the last traverse to the Manchet lift I was surprised to see the big slope above had slid and an enormous amount of debris was blocking the way. Then I noticed Bernard’s tracks going into the debris but nothing coming out the other side so we immediately switched to receive and scanned the avalanche for a signal. Aldo arrived behind us and helped out but once down alongside the avalanche there was no signal and we then could see a track coming out the other side. I asked the lift operator and he said he’d seen Bernard pass by and that it came down after Bernard had traversed across and before we showed up. That was at 10AM and pretty early for natural slides to be popping out! Blimey, it just goes to show why we always spread out on that traverse and to never take anything for granted. (see photos)

A little more snow is forecast this afternoon and tomorrow but 150cm’s are expected over the weekend! Time to get the air-bag back out! Stay tuned.

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