New Vallée Blanche video

Long time no blog posts.  However, this is because we’ve been pretty much flat out with guests this Winter….

We’ve had one of our best seasons so far – fantastic snow, and we’ve had some wonderful guests through the chalet again.  Hopefully made some good friends too…

I bought a Go-Pro camera back in December and have been out a few times with it.

In January, we skied the Vallée Blanche with our guests, John and his wife, Kathy, together with James Kaler, our trusted ski guide and instructor, and took the camera along with us.

What a day!
Amazingly clear, blue skies.
Fresh, incredibly deep, virgin powder.
Bonus! Precious few people had been down the route before us – so we had LOADS of fresh tracks!

It was, however, incredibly cold and windy on the arete…
So cold, in fact, that I even got frost nip on my ears, despite wearing some ear protection thingies…

In all the time that I have lived in Chamonix, I have never experienced powder snow as deep as it was this day…

Awesome.  Watch and enjoy!


Our video of the Vallée Blanche….

We’ve just finished producing a short video showing some of the skiing down the Vallée Blanche with a group of guests that stayed here in January…. Special thanks to Dave, Vanessa, Paul, Mark and Alan.

We skied the Classique route down the glacier with James, our guide – all 22 kms off-piste to arrive back in Chamonix town.

A great day’s skiing had by all!! It might take a few moments to load….

Read about the vallée blanche.

Our first Vallée Blanche of 2009

The excellent snow conditions here in Chamonix, means that the arête down the Aiguille du Midi has been equipped with ropes for the last couple of weeks – normally this happens around the second week of January.  
Anyhow, todayHelen and I were lucky enough to be invited to join one of our guests and his guide for a Vallée Blanche descent. 
Descending the arête - Chamonix in the background

Descending the arête - Chamonix in the background

The weather was beautiful…  Cold, crisp, and clear…  The snow – simply divine.

For those that have not yet heard about the Vallée Blanche…  It is an amazing 18 kilometre off-piste route down the Mer du Glace glacier.  Over snow bridges, around crevasses, down fantastic fields of powder snow….  

The scenery is incredible, but it can be a very dangerous place.  Every year, it claims the lives of a number of people.   Thus, it is essential to take a guide.  Those who don’t can die if they stray from the route, or stop in unsuitable places (such as on snow bridges or underneath seracs), or fall in crevasses…  Some of the crevasses can be over 50 metres deep.

Skiers heading down the Vallée Blanche

Skiers heading down the Vallée

We took the Classique route

We took the Classique route

Mountains, glaciers, crevasses.. and skiers

Mountains, glaciers, crevasses.. and skiers

Helen and Nigel having lunch on the glacier

Helen and Nigel having lunch on the glacier

The snow conditions were so good that we were able to ski all the way back to Chamonix….  (normally, the route finishes at the Montenvers station)

Looking down on Chamonix

Looking down on Chamonix