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Savoie inconnu 2018

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
This afternoon visited one of the Savoie mega-complexes. Seemed like easiest way to get up high for acclimatization to altitude -- since I'm about to start a short ski mountaineering trip.

My hope to also catch some mushy corn skiing did not work. Too windy -- so as soon as the sun warmed some water molecules on S-facing slope, they just sublimated. Or maybe the altitude was too high.

Better days to come for mushy snow.

Ken
snow conditions     
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Fortunately the altitude acclimatization aspect seems to have worked.
Just got out from a ski mountaineering tour with key climbing sections around elevation 3600m, and steep 35-40 degree ski descent around 3400-3500m -- didn't notice any altitude-related problems, and I did get through it all up and down.

Not in Savoie, so I reported some details on UKclimbing.com
http://ukclimbing.com/forums/skiing/ski_mountaineering_france_2018-683026

Ken

P.S. tomorrow going to try some alpine rock climbing with approach on skis (outside Savoie).
snow conditions     
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Today Sharon knew she wanted groomed-track cross-country skiing, so we went to Les Saisies yet again. Her no-wax ridge-bottom skis worked just fine in the mushy snow. She found that _more_ trails were skiable for her than said in the official snow report.
Fun time for her . . . "Quite a bargain for 5 Euros".

Fair number of people riding the lifts for downhill skiing, and cars parked in the village - (I think Les Saisies will be open into next weekend).

Ken

P.S. Meanwhile I did something unusual for Savoie ski time:
. . . rest . . .
After three days in a row of skiing and climbing.
Yesterday using skis to get to and from a multi-pitch rock climb (outside Savoie) worked rather well. See this report:
http://mountainproject.com/forum/topic/114266016/skiing-approach-to-multi-pitch-rock-climbs
ski holidays     
 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
Yesterday Sharon and I tried some ungroomed backcountry snow away in Haute Savoie, lift-assisted at around altitude 2500-3200 meters, mainly S-facing, but also some N-facing. All seemed supportive (without getting into any underlying "rotten" stuff), like nice transformed spring corn snow. If we had started and finished a couple of hours earlier, surface would have been perfect mushiness, but having it slow but very skiable worked fine for us.

Day before Tuesday on-piste around 2500-3200 meters at mega-complex to the south (chosen because Sharon wanted more altitude-acclimatization before trying a backcountry tour), and found rather fun corn skiiing with (better-timed) perfect depth of mushiness.

Ken
snow report     
 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Yesterday Sharon did her last day of cross-country skiing for this season. Was planning on Savoie Grand Revard, but checked website and found that they are (unsurprisingly) closed for the season. I suggested that she likely would still find snow on her favorite pistes there, perhaps walk around some base spots. But she checked for the higher-altitude option on the Alpe d'Huez website, which reported that three of their loops were closed, but two were expected to open.

So she made the much longer drive to this non-Savoie station, parked in the big Bergers day-parking lot. Walked into the ski pass office and they told her that cross-country skiing was not operating (despite the web report) -- no grooming had been done. After Sharon persisted and explained how far she had traveled, they said perhaps she could try hiking on the ungroomed trails. She purchased a single-ride ticket on the DMC lift. Next rode the navette / shuttle bus to Rond-point des Pistes, boarded the DMC lift carrying her skis and got off at mid-station. Found the SE corner of the Lac boucle trail, and skied out on that a ways to past the chalet.

Surface ranged from bad to OK, much impacted by walkers holes, and also snow-vehicle tracks + ruts. Turned around and skied back the same way. Decided with those conditions _not_ to ski down to the Alpe d'Huez base village, instead boarded the DMC lift at mid-station went back down on that.

Pretty views of surrounding mountains, nice to be out in the sunshine (but would not have needed to leave Savoie to do that).
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Tomorrow Sunday thinking we'll do some lift-served downhill skiing (maybe also some uphill skinning or kick-turn practice?) at
Meribel or Courchevel, having their last day of operation for the winter season.

Today we've got some infrastructure work to do (purchase some tools and a new portable refrigerator), so our gliding will be limited to rolling on asphalt close to Chambery -- Sharon on a bicycle, me getting another day of cross-country skiing with my poles with special tips for asphalt, and little wheels under my feet for skating. Preceded by some indoor climbing at Vertilac.

If might want to join for some of that, by all means let us know.

Previous two days I did a lift-assisted ski mountaineering tour, then an alpine rock climb with approach on skis, both away up around Mont Blanc. Sharon also away on Thursday rented on E-bike and did the wonderful anti-clockwise ride around the Lac d'Annecy.

Ken
ski holidays     
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
has any snow heads met up with you yet ken?
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