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Wayne and Gill Watson.
Alpine Experience
Alpine Experience

Off Piste & Back Country Skiing Specialists

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Wayne's Photos of the Day >

Chamois Galore!!!

For the first time in ages we faced a cold flat-light day and my plan when leaving my apartment was to spend most of the morning on-piste working on technique, which was what we used to do in days gone by when there wasn’t much on offer or the snow was too thick for our skinny skis. Anyway, after starting with a nice run on the Kern there were signs of sunshine towards the Charvet so we headed that way following the sun. Chris had skied it yesterday so we knew there was a pisted strip down the ‘classic’ route and it’s been years since I relied on a strip of pisted-by-ski-off-piste but today was the day for it. We then witnessed something I’ve never seen before when we came across only what could be described as a ‘chamois’ toilet’! It looked like a communal toilet and the entire herd must have relieved themselves at the same time. About 15-minutes later we came across the herd above us near the Couloir du Mont Blanc and there must have been 30 chamois together. A couple of them were unfortunately spooked and took off at speed running and jumping and it was all pretty impressive. (It made skiing pisted-off-piste worth it!) It’s been thirty years since I’ve seen that many chamois at the same time and it was a great sight. From there it was clearing towards the Fornet so we continued to follow the sun and skied the ‘L’ en-route to the Grand Vallon as the Glacier was closed due to high winds. The Grand Vallon was smooth enough for the most part and much better than I thought it would be but it was jolly chilly so we headed for shelter and a hot chocolate. (see photos and thanks Fay!) After warming up we finished off with a couple of runs in the Combe du Signal and it ended up be a really good morning, especially for one that looked like a potential ‘stinker’!

Chris and Thomas skied more or less the same as my team this morning while Andreas skied the Chardonnet, Familial and Kern. TJ was out there somewhere but I’m not too sure where he went.

Chris had a fright as he lost his radio in the Charvet this morning and went back to look for it this afternoon. He took my radio back to call it (we’ve done this trick before) but he couldn’t see or hear it anywhere. Eventually he found it at the bottom of the Manchet as he must have dropped it getting on the chairlift and the operator had it. What a relief as they’re several hundred Euros at least!

It didn’t really snow today and we’re hoping for a better effort on the snow-front tomorrow. We were thankful for the sunshine today as it did make a potentially tough morning so much better and fingers crossed for one or the other and stay tuned!