Wayne's Daily Diary Archive

20 June 2007

30 April 2008
I was the only one on duty this morning

I was the only one on duty this morning and with grey skies and a minimum freeze as well as doubts about how well the snow transformed yesterday, thoughts of potential ‘stinker’ entered my head. After a quick test off the Verte my worries evaporated as the snow was firm so we headed towards the Palafour where we skied one off the Palafour, another on the front-side of the Aiguille Percee, followed by an excellent Sache with five cm’s of powder on the steep slope followed by perfect ‘spring’ to the bottom. We then finished with a quick Campanules and another ‘stinker’ was avoided, thank goodness! It started snowing around 2PM and 30 cm’s are forecast on the Glaciers with 15 cm’s expected at 2500 metres. Yahoo! And bring on the match tonight as Clive has invited a house-full to watch it at his place. Thanks Clive!

29 April 2008
What a fantastic day we had today!

What a fantastic day we had today! Yesterday’s rain cleared long enough for a re-freeze but when we awoke to see snow in the trees in the village it was game on. I put my goggles in my bag just in case but when we arrived at the top of Bellevarde Tignes and the Motte were in clear blue skies. We started with some lovely snow off the Verte, then entered the Borsat North from fairly high up to access a long pitch to the bottom. From there we skied the meadows down to the Funicular and on up where we had a great run on the Glacier from the summit down to the Leisse Chair. We then skied the little Face Nord and 161-turns later started a short ‘skin’ to the Tour du Balme, which was excellent as well. Henry and his friend Ginny skied with us and it was great to have him along. Chris skied with just Greg and the two of them took no prisoners on another big morning. Andreas was suffering with a ‘chemical reaction’ after the Val d’Isere Open, which slipped from his grasp on a ‘technical’ hitch. He finished joint-first on score but the other fellow had a five handicap to Andreas’ four. (That will teach you for being so good and not lying about your handicap Andreas) Anyway, were not too sure about tomorrow’s weather but rumour has it some snow may arrive for Red Ray and Penny’s arrival as Red aims to notch up 60 days this season, and keep his job! Have fun at Old Trafford you Man U supporters such as Eric H, Chris and Matt, John F, Geoff and Ant, and I’m sure I’ve forgot one or two of you.

28 April 2008
I've some great news for you

I’ve some great news for you as it’s raining in town as of 3PM, which means snow upstairs and a chance of a morning or two of powder followed by some ‘clean’ spring. Most of the spring slopes are now trashed and this rain/snow is a chance of a superb finish if people give the spring slopes a chance to transform properly over the next couple of days. I had the day off and Chris was working alone with a minimum freeze and he managed a good morning with the Lavachet, Sachette, and Campanules. Andreas is trying to win back the Val d’Isere Open title today but I haven’t heard any news of yet so I’ll keep you posted on that one tomorrow. I’d like to thank Jim and Dave for their hospitality the last few nights with some wonderful meals and great company. Thanks boys! I’m also looking forward to the Champions League matches Tuesday and Wednesday night, which should be nail-biting!

27 April 2008
After another decent freeze

After another decent freeze Chris and I decided that we couldn’t do better than yesterday so we returned to the Kern, Lavachet, Sachette, Campanules, and Familial for another excellent morning of spring snow. Andreas and Henry returned from a very successful three-day tour where they had great skiing mixed with some partying refuge style. Well done boys! I am not too sure of the weather forecast but we all hope for a freeze with some sunshine for tomorrow

26 April 2008
After a slightly colder night

After a slightly colder night and with a deepening transformation it was game on this morning. Chris and I opened with an outstanding Kern, which we skied as far down as possible before cutting back to the Upper Chairlift. We then skied off the Verte en route to the Altiport and Lavachet to ski perfectly smooth snow again. From there the Sachette was brilliant top-to-bottom, followed by an excellent Campanules before finishing off with a very good Familial. Clive said, “That’s how I remember spring snow” as everything we skied was clean. I had Ellie along, as well as Dave C from Mountain Masters, who along with Clive kept us laughing. Rupert, Nick, Kay and Stephen have had a great few days with Chris as the past few mornings have been getting better and better. I think we’re in for another good day tomorrow but rumour has it the weather will deteriorate next week. We won’t panic quite yet as the forecast as often been wrong! Sports Report- Just watched Chelsea v Man U at Clive’s and what an exciting match it turned out to be with Chelsea winning 2-1. United are still in the driver’s seat for the Championship although they aren’t quite firing on all cylinders of late. I like the look of the Hammers leading Newcastle 2-0 but there is a long way to go and the Magpies have been a pain over the past couple of seasons.

25 April 2008
Unfortunately there was cloud cover again

Unfortunately there was cloud cover again last night so the re-freeze wasn’t quite as solid as we were hoping for, but there was a better transformation of the snow-pack from yesterday’s heat and we had a great morning of spring skiing. With the re-freeze being minimal we needed to be quick and move an hour ahead of the regular spring schedule. I started off the Borsat before skiing a superb Tour du Charvet into the Couloir du Mt. Blanc, where the freeze gave out just at the entrance of the Couoir and we needed to side-slip down to the bottom section. From there it was straight to the Col de la Madeleine and we just made it down as the freeze was giving up, then two Arcelle’s back to the piste to avoid the bottom, followed by the Mattis trees back to the piste to finish. Chris skied the Borsat before heading to the Cabin de la Garde and then the Col Pers to finish. Andreas and Henry started a three-day tour so good luck to them on the weather front as we all pray for a cold night followed by another sunny day or three. Jean Marc starts a tour tomorrow around La Grave and Kristina has gone with him so Suzanne will be answering the phone for a few days. Thanks Suzanne! I had Bernie-the-boot do some new foot-beds tonight and I’m really looking forward to trying then tomorrow.

24 April 2008
Today was one of the trickiest mornings

Today was one of the trickiest mornings of the season. Yesterday afternoon’s cloud cover kept in the heat and put a crust on what was wonderful powder but the clouds also stopped the suns rays from properly transforming the snow. The result was no powder or spring and a delicate situation. We found that mid-altitude and away from the sun (meaning west and north) worked because anything in the sun had already lost its support and we managed a decent Sachette and little play on the Lavachet. It was hot and sunny today so tomorrow we should have some proper spring snow and we’re expecting a better re-freeze than last night, which was minimal. We now off the Gourmadine’s 2nd Annual BBQ!

23 April 2008
After a cloudy start the clouds dissapated quickly

After a cloudy start the clouds dissapated quickly and the sun shone for most of the morning. We all headed to the Fornet for a ‘maximum-turn’ session, which was greatly appreciated after the flat-light of late. We skied off the Laisinant, under the bubble (very good), Combe du Signal (superb), two Combe du 3300’s (slightly wind touched but still really nice), Pays Desert (same), and a Col Pers to finish. Chris went first and dropped out of sight and when he didn’t answer my radio calls I started to worry about him. I skied down over the dome and there h was below me swearing and poking around in the snow as his radio had flown out of its holder and landed somewhere in the deep snow. I called on mine to try to trace it but no audible clues could be heard. Finally I found it by dragging my pole through Chris’ track, which was a bit lucky. Anyway, we continued on to finish off an excellent morning of powder skiing. The forecast is for sun tomorrow followed by three or four hot days with June-like temperatures. Should be interesting!

Sports Report- What a match last night! Unless you are a Chelsea fan you had to feel for Liverpool giving up such a painful goal at the death. I hope tonight’s game is just as good and I’ve a feeling that Man U are really going to strut their stuff in the Nou Camp. Should be great!

PS Boy, I got that wrong! I’ve never seen Man U look so ordinary in attack. They were toyed with the entire match, showed absolutely no creativity, but bravo for hanging in there and keeping a clean sheet under intense pressure. They must have had some injury problems as Sir Alex’s team selection seemed a little strange to me but well done fellow-Calgarian Owen Hargraeves who played brilliantly out of position at right-back. Anyway, bring on next week’s re-matches!

22 April 2008
April 21st and 22nd

(21st) It snowed around 25cm’s overnight and continued during the day, giving TJ excellent conditions to finish his season. He skied up at the Fornet in the Combe du Signal, Combe du 3300, and finished over the Col Pers with just enough light to travel comfortable. I was down the valley just outside Annecy playing golf with Andreas, who played off of 4, which is jolly good and fun to watch. I was rubbish but still managed enough good shots to stay positive. Chris had the day off as well as it’s calming down and although the snow is still falling the resort is empty. The forecast is for more snow tonight before it clears on Wednesday and a high pressure system moves in. Sports Report- The Hammers finally won a match, the bottom is getting tighter as Bolton won again, and Tevez saved Man U with a last minute equaliser. Good stuff but I’m really looking forward to the Champions League on Tuesday and Wednesday and will be well installed in front of my tele. And on the Ice Hockey front, the Calgary Flames forced Game Seven with a 2-0 win in Game Six over the San Jose Sharks. April 22nd. We saw TJ off in style last night with a great evening in the Bars Des Sports and I snuck away en route to the Blue Note, where Chris, JM, Suzanne, Kristina, Jo H, David, Ali, and Brian ended up until 2AM. Anyway, this morning we were presented with more snow, flat-light and enough wind to keep many lifts closed during the morning. Still we had an excellent ski with a run on the Solaise piste, one on the OK, then the Campanules, the Combe des Lanches, the Col du Palet and a Familial to finish. The forecast is for slightly brighter skies tomorrow, which would be nice, with a sunny day on Thursday, then it’s 50/50 whether the high-pressure arrives or not. I guess will just take what we get and get on with it!

20 April 2008
April 19th and 20th

The 19th started off cloudy but by the first lift the skies had cleared and we were on for a stunning ‘maximum-turn’ with 10 to 30 cm’s of light powder. My team skied off the Laisinant Chair, one under the Vallon bubble, a Grand Vallon, a Combe du Signal, a 3300, a Pays Desert, and then a superb trip over the Col Pers to finish. All the teams skied similar runs and for those who finished their season, it couldn’t have been a better day to bow out towards summer. Anne C skied beautifully after a two-year absence and it was nice to see her back! I had a five-hour lunch with Blue and his girlfriend Nina, and I’ve been suffering ever since with ‘beer-poisoning’ followed by some sort of ‘chemical reaction’. Thanks for helping me home TJ and thanks Rob for the get-together with Marie B. The 20th was another excellent morning with Chris and Andreas skiing wonderful powder followed by spring in the Sachette while TJ had a great morning off the Motte. (I stayed in bed) Tomorrow is TJ’s last day of a very positive few weeks here but unfortunately the forecast is for rain to around 3000 metres. Let’s hope they’ve got that one wrong! Stay tuned!

PS The forecast was totally wrong as it’s snowing in the village this morning and TJ should have a great last day.

18 April 2008
It was an unexpected bonus

It was an unexpected bonus morning as the sun was shining and the forecast gloom didn’t arrive until late-afternoon. Chris and I returned to the Sachette because it was so good yesterday and we enjoyed an equally good ski today while TJ skied the Tour du Charvet before heading up to the Motte. Andreas had the day off and worked on his house (I thought he’d be practising for the Val d’Isere Open) but he’s back in action tomorrow. I’d like to say well done to Rory J who after a tough first day has pulled himself together and skied beautifully ever since. Well done Rory! It was Dick’s (of T-Bar fame) 60th tonight and TJ and I had a great time at the Taverne d’Alsace paying our respects with many faces from the past. It was a really good evening laughing with people we haven’t spent time with in years. Brother John made an excellent speech and Dick’s reply wasn’t bad either. Gill and the girls returned safely and the apartment feels a little empty but luckily Dick’s birthday fell on a good day. It’s snowing lightly and it looks like our wonderful conditions are to continue.

17 April 2008
We had an excellent ski

We had an excellent ski on Richard H’s birthday as we all headed to the Sachette. It looked as if the clouds were going to come in early but as we arrived in Tignes the skies brightened and sunshine took over to around noon, when we were on our way back to Les Tufs. The snow quality was superb with powder snow for the first half of our descent followed by lovely spring all the way to the bottom. Simon F opened the couloir followed by Ray and TJ’s group of Damian and Heather while Chris, Andreas and my team went around into the bowl. TJ is looking better and better and with some work on his knee this summer he will be strong again next winter. I took Gill and the girls down to Geneva and will be sadly on my own for the rest of the winter, which client-wise is dead, so if you fancy skiing with us in small groups of one, two, or three, now is your chance. As I write at 6:30AM Friday the ski is blue and it looks as if we have had a good freeze. Stay tuned!

16 April 2008
The promised sunshine arrived

The promised sunshine arrived and everyone enjoyed a day out of the flat-light conditions. Chris and Andreas took advantage of the weather and ‘skinned’ to the Col des Four where they had excellent snow in which they laid some great tracks. Graham B arrived at Les Tufs around 2PM and was well pleased with his morning’s outing. TJ and I headed to the Fornet and with the Pays Desert looking winded we dove over the Col Pers immediately. The snow wasn’t quite the quality we were hoping for but it was good skiing anyway and TJ’s team circled back around for another run. I headed back to Bellevarde and had some great snow off the Verte, Jardin du Borsat, Familial, and the Spatule. Gill enjoyed her last ski in the sunshine and Millie had a fine finish as well this afternoon with Red Ray along for company. I thought TJ skied really well when he was ahead of us in the Col Pers and it was great to see. He will have gained confidence about the fact that he is capable of continuing and has ordered his new ski school uniform for next winter. Gill and the girls return to England tomorrow as Millie starts back at school on the 21st so I probably won’t have time for an update as I’m taking them to the airport. Sun is forecast first thing tomorrow before more snow moves in mid to late morning.

15 April 2008
A few centimetres fell overnight

A few centimetres fell overnight that added up to 10 to 20 in certain places but the clouds were in and out most of the morning, leaving us with moments of good visibility and periods of white-out conditions. TJ was back in action today and we all skied Tignes-way and enjoyed another good morning of winter snow. Andreas played golf as he’s warming up for the Val d’Isere Open later this month. It’s Gill and Millie’s last ski tomorrow as they’re off to England with Katie and Nana on Thursday and it looks as if we’ll have sunshine for the occasion. Sports Report- All Man U supporters are Heskey fans today as the big man broke Chelsea hearts last night in injury time. The fat lady is now warming up her vocal chords.

14 April 2008
The forecasted overnight snow didn't arrive

The forecasted overnight snow didn’t arrive so we we’re left with a mountain of sun damaged snow from yesterday’s heat, and our only option was high, north and clean, which meant we’d need our ‘skins’ this morning. Chris and I chose the Glacier Pers and the ‘light-bulb’ in the sky slowly disappeared leaving us in pretty flat-light conditions as it started to snow, but we did have enough visibility to travel fairly comfortably. The main event however was the snow, and the snow was wonderful top-to-bottom. The Glacier Pers is such a lovely slope to ski in white-out conditions as it’s wide, smooth, holds no ugly surprises, and when the snow is good you can really let rip. We had a ‘travelling safely in the mountains’ experience on the way out because of the lack of light but it was a great outing on a potentially tricky day. Andreas and Henry returned from an excellent overnight stay at the Refuge des Fours and TJ rested his knee today. I forgot to thank Richard F and Susan for a great drink’s party the other night, Millie and Katie really enjoyed and indulged themselves. It has snowed off and on all afternoon and the wind has got up at times, so we’ll hope for some light and it should be another good day tomorrow. May our roll continue!

13 April 2008
There was a good re-freeze last night

There was a good re-freeze last night and the sun was out in full force this morning giving us a break from the flat-light conditions we’ve experienced lately (I’m not complaining as the skiing has been superb). The obvious choice was the Motte or the Fornet but after spending the past week between the two, Chris and I decided to take advantage of the re-freeze and ski the Sachette for a change of scenery. The snow was lovely off the Verte, meaning the Sachette would work, and we skied an excellent Altiport into the Lavachet en-route. The Sachette was very good indeed the Julian and Chris had the cameras rolling as Red Ray and Simon F skied the couloir before the rest of us continued into the main bowl. The boys have taken some great footage this season (some of which can be viewed through Jean R’s link on the Link’s page) and everyone has enjoyed seeing themselves in action. We finished off a great morning with a Familial and Spatule. TJ returned to the fantastic snow up on the Motte with his initiation group, while Andreas and Henry skied at the Fornet before ‘skinning’ to and skiing wonderful snow over the Col des Fours, where they are staying the night there before returning in the morning. Jean Marc is here with his family for a week’s holiday and they had a great day as well and Red Ray took Millie out for a ski this afternoon on their own. Thanks Ray! It is forecast to snow tomorrow and Tuesday before the sun returns on Wednesday.

Sports Report- Don’t ask about the Hammers, all I can say is that they’re safe, thank goodness. But Bolton winning combined with other results tightens up the drop-zone considerably, and a few teams will be extremely nervous. Sounds like the Man U win over Arsenal was a great game and what a result for United. That should just about see them home but the fat lady hasn’t begun to sing quite yet. What I’d really like to do tonight is watch the final round of the Masters from Augusta, but since that isn’t possible I’m off to bed instead.

12 April 2008
We all headed towards the Motte again today

We all headed towards the Motte again today and found wonderful skiing everywhere we went. The Verte was good, the Borsat was even better, and everything off the Motte was superb. Oli, Chris and I were all on the first cable-car, which only had two people who weren’t with ‘Alpine’, and it was non-stop powder turns in 20 to 25cm’s. We spent the morning upstairs and finished with a perfect Familial for another ‘maximum-turn’ outing. Andreas was skiing with friends after spending the past ten days or so mostly on piste and TJ skied off-piste with Derek and his two kids, Gregor and Heather, who made Dad proud! We wish a big Happy Birthday to my lovely wife Gill, as well as TJ’s son Oscar, who turns twelve today. The forecast is for a sunny day tomorrow before off-and-on snow for the early part of next week. Sounds good to me!

11 April 2008
It was drizzling in town this morning

It was drizzling in town this morning, (which means fresh snow up high) and as soon as we left the piste to test the snow on the edge of the Verte we knew we were in business. There was a good re-freeze overnight night and we skied a smooth base with a few centimetres on top off the Verte, a little deeper snow in the Borsat, and then some lovely powder up on the Grande Motte. The Glacier itself was excellent and the Rosilin was even better (for a rotation or three) before we skied variations en-route to Les Tus. I ran into Klaus on the bus and when I asked him how is morning was he said, “Skiing with TJ is wonderful, he makes you ski so gently”. We had another good day of visibility for a grey day and only experienced white-out conditions towards the end of the morning. Jean R stopped by the Rond Point to say ‘Bonne ete’ and mentioned that yesterday was his toughest day of the season to which TJ replied, “That’s a good sign”, meaning, ‘Bloody hell Jean, you’ve had a stunning season’. It was great for TJ to get back into some easier snow today and he’s feeling more confident with each day, and is looking forward to next winter. It has snowed off and on most of the day and the temperatures are forecast to drop during the night. Again, we only need a little light and it’s game-on in the morning.

10 April 2008
We had tougher conditions to deal with today

We had tougher conditions to deal with today as only a couple of centimetres fell last night, it was extremely warm with the re-freeze level half-way up the mountain, and the skies were overcast for the most part. Fortunately enough light got through to give us decent visibility and even though conditions weren’t as easy or as good as we’ve enjoyed lately the skiing, although ‘educational’ at times, was pretty jolly good. After a difficult Combe du Signal to test conditions we skied two good runs in the Pays Desert with 5 to 10 cm’s up top before skiing more spring-like snow at the bottom. We then had an excellent Col Pers with good warm powder all the way down and a fairly easy exit at the bottom. It was ‘skiers’ snow for most of the morning but considering the lack of freeze and the warmth of the day, it was good skiing. TJ made his comeback off-piste today and kept his initiation group up high on the Pays Desert to avoid any ‘tricky-ness’ and he was pleased with how his knee reacted to today’s conditions. Well done TJ and welcome back! It was Jean R’s last morning of the season today as he notched up 74 days with ‘alpine’ this season. Jean now moves on to a summer/fall of scuba-diving and golf, nice life Jean! The forecast is for rain tomorrow morning to between 2000 and 2400 metres before turning colder with the snow/rain limit dropping back to 1200 metres.

9 April 2008
The beat goes on

The beat goes on as another tricky looking morning turned out to be another really good session on the mountain. After two great days on the Motte Chris and I decided on a trip to the Fornet for a change of scenery and after looking at the Pays Desert we headed over the Col. There wasn’t a track on the mountain, the snow was excellent and we had just enough visibility to really let go and enjoy it. Chris and Tejina circled back around for a second run while my team skied two good Grand Vallon’s. Robert, Caroline and Casper, who are skiing with Olivier, are having a fantastic initiation and we’d like to mention Robert and his young son Oscar who are also doing the business. Gillian T received a phone call at the end of a wonderful morning with news that she had won the ‘Journalist-of-the-Year’ award. Well done Gillian! (Slightly over-shadows the prestigious ‘skier-of-the-morning’ award) And what a football match last night! Back and forth, both sets of fans laughing and crying, a 23-milllion pound striker strutting his stuff, Peter Crouch doing himself proud, a run by Theo Walcott that hasn’t been seen since Giggs’ masterful goal years ago, and Gerrard stepping up under huge pressure. Ahh, the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat. Brilliant! It’s drizzling in town, which means snow up top so we won’t worry about the weather too much and hope for visibility tomorrow.

8 April 2008
It was a year ago today that TJ had his accident

It was a year ago today that TJ had his accident, and we celebrated the fact that he is still with us with an excellent morning and another ‘maximum-turn’ session. It didn’t snow overnight and with grey skies this morning expectations after yesterday weren’t that high. Chris and I headed back towards the Motte and after finding nice snow off the Verte and in the Borsat, we knew we had a chance at another great day, especially when the visibility was good. After the Verte and Borsat we skied two off the Leisse, a Genepy/Cairn to the bottom, then they opened the cable-car in front of us where we skied two superb runs on the Glacier in failing light, followed by another Genepy/Cairn to the bottom, and then a good piste cruise to Les Tufs. The quality of skiing lately has been fantastic and long may our run continue. Olivier and Thomas’ initiation groups are having a wonderful time and really loving it while TJ and Andreas are still on-piste. It’s trying to snow and the forecast is for the rain/snow limit to fluctuate between 1800 and 2400 metres over the next couple of days. Personally, most of the bad weather forecasted over the past few weeks hasn’t been nearly as bad as feared and we’ve been pleasantly surprised so often that I hardly take notice of the forecast these days. TJ’s coming over tonight for the Liverpool vs Arsenal match, which could be a cracker! (And come on you Hammers!)

7 April 2008
Bloody hell!

Bloody hell! What an unexpectedly brilliant ‘maximum-turn’ day we were treated to today! The 100kph winds didn’t arrive, it was -7C at 8AM in town instead of -15 to -20C, and the overcast skies cleared quickly leaving us with another wonderfully sunny day. The first run was very cold however as the wind was strong enough to chill anyone under-dressed to the bone, but the wind calmed down and wasn’t really a factor. Chris and I were about to ‘skin’ to Mont Roup to ski 5 cm’s on a spring base, but after testing the snow off the Verte we realised that there was at least 10cm’s in the gullies and on the lee slopes and headed instead towards the Motte. We were stunned by the quantity and quality of the snow upstairs. It varied from 20 cm’s to knee deep in places, and it’s been awhile since Red Ray has taken face-shots like he did today. My team skied the Verte, the Borsat, the Col du Palet, four off the Leisse, a Genepy to the bottom, and a Familial to finish. Well done David B, who skied beautifully today and bravo Kathy R! Chris, who was skiing with just Tejina and Gill, skied the same as my team plus two more runs off the Leisse, making a ‘mega-maximum-turn’ morning. Bravo JC and girls! (As Tejina said today, “Leisse is more!”) Olivier and Thomas skied Tignes-way with initiation groups and did a great job ‘hooking’ them to ‘Alpine’ for the future. Well done boys! TJ is feeling stronger by the day and will guide off-piste on Thursday and Friday while Andreas continues with his Thai family. A little snow is forecast for tonight with light snow and grey skies tomorrow with warmer weather and Foehn/Lombarde winds. We’ll wait and see, but I’m still shaking my head, what a day!

6 April 2008
A few centimetres fell overnight

A few centimetres fell overnight and it was snowing lightly with grey skies and flat-light when we left the Gourmadine. Luckily it cleared up around 10:30 and the sun came out turning a dull morning into another stunning day. Chris and I skied the Little Lavachet, which was excellent, followed by a great Sachette with powder and spring snow, and a good Familial to finish. Olivier had a fantastic morning around the Motte and Andreas and TJ continued with their on-piste privates, while Thomas had the day off. The forecast is a little unknown, with rumours of 100kph winds in the village tonight followed by -15 to -20C temperatures in the morning. I’ve also heard that we could receive one metre of snow between Tuesday and Wednesday accompanied by nasty winds. Time will tell.

5 April 2008
The sun was out again today

The sun was out again today and team ‘Alpine’ enjoyed a superb day of skiing. Olivier skied an excellent Mont Roup in perfect spring snow, Thomas skied powder followed by spring during a great trip to Bonneval, and Chris and I had a fabulous Col des Fours. Jean R has his daughter Kathy skiing with us this week for the first time and she is making him proud with her skiing and appreciation of what we strive to achieve at ‘Alpine’. Bravo Kathy! Philip N and Jeremy C’s team deserve a mention for a fantastic effort in Ste Foy yesterday with 15-year-old Henry linking 190 turns before reluctantly running out of gas. Nice one Henry! (They’ve had a great week skiing with Didier) I had another fast ski with Mille this afternoon who says, “Daddy, I seem to have forgotten how to ski slowly”. The weather is about to change with a few flakes forecast tonight and more snow expected tomorrow night.

4 April 2008
Radio Val reported -7C at 8AM

Radio Val reported -7C at 8AM and we enjoyed unbroken sunshine all day long. I skied with Chris up at the Fornet for a change of pace and after a decent Combe du Signal it was apparent that the Pays Desert wasn’t worth skiing so we dove over the Col Pers, where we had great snow top to bottom. We then circled back around to ski good snow off the Borsat before finishing with the Familial. Olivier and Jean Marc were touring although I’m not too sure what they skied. Andreas was with his Thai clients on-piste for the most part while TJ continued with his beginner. I had a really good fast ski with Millie this afternoon and she’s flying now, especially once I took her poles away, which just seem to detract from what she’s doing with her feet. TJ had some excellent physio from Louise at Bonne Sante last night and got another ten degrees flexion, which is great news. Thanks Louise! Rumour has it that the sun will shine tomorrow morning before clouds roll in with a little snow. Sounds good to me!

3 April 2008
We were treated to a morning of unexpected brightness

We were treated to a morning of unexpected brightness resulted in excellent visibility and superb skiing after yesterday’s fresh snow. (The wind was very strong again today but the snow on the lea slopes was fantastic) Chris and I had a wonderful maximum-turn session off the Motte, Olivier had a great morning as well in Tignes, I’m not too sure what Andreas skied with his Thai clients, and TJ’s beginners have made huge progress this week. Jean Marc arrived for lunch at Les Tufs and will be in action tomorrow before heading off to Italy. Ian Noble picked up a ‘splat du jour’ award when he piled in after hitting a ridge left by a rat-track in the only flat-light we had all morning. Fortunately he wasn’t seriously injured although his face did swell a little at lunchtime but he said the Familial was so good it was worth it! Gill enjoyed her skiing this morning even though she had a slight hang-over blamed on Doctor Laura’s ‘girl’s night’. Luckily I was watching some great football with TJ and escaped a similar fate and felt great this morning! I’m not sure about the forecast but as long as we can see we should have another really good day of skiing as we continue to get regular little top-ups and the temperatures resemble winter more than they do April.

2 April 2008
The sun didn't shine today

The sun didn’t shine today and instead we had flat-light and enough wind to shut down the Aero-ski lift in Tignes. It wasn’t a ‘stinker’ but it was a tougher morning than we’ve been accustomed to of late. We skied the Sachette, which was very good for the top third, decent for the middle third, and then a little ‘scratchy’ down low. It started snowing around 10AM and has continued to snow during the afternoon, and looks as if it will keep snowing for a while yet. (I’m writing at 2:50PM) I’m looking forward to the Arsenal vs Liverpool match tonight from the comfort of my sofa and TJ is joining me for an evening of pasta, red wine and footie. Stay tuned for some powder news tomorrow!

1 April 2008
After yesterday's flat-light the sun returned

After yesterday’s flat-light the sun returned and we all enjoyed a stunning day. We all skied up at the Fornet and were surprised by the lack of snow compared to what we sampled in the white-out conditions yesterday in Tignes. Still, there was enough new snow to give a great feel underfoot and we left ‘Alpine’ tracks everywhere during another maximum-turn morning. I’d like to give Piers, who skied with ‘Alpine’ for the first time today, a mention as he fit in immediately and skied very well indeed. Sun is forecast tomorrow and we’re expecting some more snow on Thursday. What a winter!

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