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Serre Chevalier Snow Report 2016/2017

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@Hells Bells, hope the col wasn't too slippery.........
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Great morning with @KenX, and Serre delivered the goods, finally.

We certainly were skiing more than the 15cm or so in the valley, though I see a local Chalet Co on FB is saying we had 40cm, think I put that down to kiddy enthusiasm rolling eyes

So here's @KenX


And more of a report here http://www.stylealtitude.com/serrechevalierweathercam.html
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 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?
@Weathercam , @KenX not jealous at all!! Mad
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Oi, gerrof moi freshies!!

wink
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Looking forward to coming out to monetier at Easter with the family. Will be a very different trip to last year when we did a fair amount of slack country skiing. Mornings will be riding my eldest in a sit ski and afternoons will be skiing blues and perhaps some reds with the younger two. Looking to hire someone to ski with me in the morning to help me on and off chairs with the sit ski and then ski with us. If any seasionnaires know someone who is reliable who would like to earn £30 per morning please put them in touch.
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@dan100, you could maybe put that on the Serre Chevalier, Buy it, Sell it, Rent it / Acheter, Vendre, Louer FaceBook
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Weathercam wrote:
@dan100, you could maybe put that on the Serre Chevalier, Buy it, Sell it, Rent it / Acheter, Vendre, Louer FaceBook


Ok thanks
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Here:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/822302667856904/

You'll need to join the group which Weathercam or I can do, or I can put it up for you Very Happy
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Weathercam wrote:
@Hells Bells, Col might be interesting in the morning if this keeps up along with wind at altitude, what are your plans?


Plans were to use the Col if it said it was open. It was so we did. There were a few hairy bits where the snow blowing across the roads reduced visibility to nil, but there was hardly any cars on it. It was better at the top as snow had stopped, although it didn't really improve much until we were almost at Vizille.
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Very Happy
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@Hells Bells, interesting journey!

We were having a drink at a friends hotel in Le Bez last night and she was waiting for her army clients to arrive and they kept ringing to say how bad it was - think if that was a weekend they would have shut it as the authorities know many tourists have no idea as to what they might be letting themselves in for by attempting to drive over, especially in the dark!

Meeting up with the CAF soon also be interesting to see what we end up doing this morning, one things for sure I'm touring with my ABS!

And been snowing most of the night though as we were walking back twas difficult to tell if it was the wind blowing the snow or it was actually snowing rolling eyes
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@KenX, gamble paid off, phew...........

Been a long time coming what with the dire conditions opting for a ski tour over lifts but the lure was too strong and finally everything came together to make for a great morning all though keeping up with the youngsters was hard with a pace of nigh on 500m per hour for a couple of hours and quite a technical ascent at times, but that was on the up and the descent saw the "old man" put in a good show Cool

And there was a new "Rando Chien" - that's him the lump in the tracks below.

Owner, Coraline is a vet in Briancon in the same practice we take our dogs too and we saw her last Nov for their return treatment!







Report and more pics and Strava Route log here
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
KenX wrote:
Here:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/822302667856904/

You'll need to join the group which Weathercam or I can do, or I can put it up for you Very Happy


Thank you. I will see what Mel from eureka ski can do then if she can't find anyone I will come back to you. Thanks for help.
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You know it makes sense.
And now for something completely different:



Full on ice racing at the Circuit de Glace in Villeneuve, the cars were mega spec, over 500bhp, 4wd, 4-wheel steering and studded 5" wide tyres which look a little odd.......
There were also electric race cars which was bizarre!!!
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
OH has been laid up with the "bug" for the last couple of days but being the fighter she is and knowing she's already missed out on a couple of powder days she wanted to go up the hill and find what she must have lost at the end of last season, her Mojo Toofy Grin

First couple of runs became pretty obvious that the locals must have been out in force yesterday for really what must have been the first decent weekend ski day of the season, as it was quite tracked out Sad

So even though OH was coughing and spluttering she was up for a bit of a hike to get to some nice fresh.

Was pretty damn cold, and I took my gloves off to take a couple of pics and hands were nigh on numb when trying to get my gloves back on!

She wisely took her time and did have a few rests





Really nice off the ridge (where the old chair finished) under the rock alongside the old "black" piste





And then further down, Mojo restored



After a quick snack for lunch back out with the dogs to walk up to the Motor Circuit on the other side of the river, where we saw one race and was most impressive, then we crossed over the river further up and were walking to the circuit just as everyone was walking back to their cars, did hope it was just a break in the proceedings and they would resume early evening again, but no that was it, fin rolling eyes
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 Poster: A snowHead
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@Weathercam, nice pics!
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Very nice pics Wc.

Arrived yesterday, but a bit too late to get out. Today is best described as fresh. Just stopped to try to find my toes wink
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Mosha Marc, it was pretty chilly last week too.
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Great pics. Adding nicely to the excitement building for my half-term trip with my lad. Smile
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Oh well feckin wind has trashed a lot of the good stuff, watching this vid you could be mistaken into thinking conditions were good rolling eyes

That said will be go back up tomorrow to "attack" another line, will just hope............


http://youtube.com/v/NM2rMoeb620
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Climbing up yesterday did look over towards one of my favorite routes and the snow did look better, though looks can be deceiving!

But we decided on giving it a go, and were rewarded with some nice turns, though still technical to ski as snow pack was continually different all the way down, with circa ten turns of nice powder, followed by a couple of crust then back to windblown etc etc

Climb out was faster than day before but had to take a much steeper line and crampons were essential.



KenX doing his thing


Start of the climb and straight up


Still a fair way to go


Once back at the lift bumped into Gavin Crosby again, and @Mosha Marc's, group, as Gavin had skied part of our route, but then had to cut back to get to the lift and said he wondered whose tracks they were carrying on and where they went Cool

Have heard that LG is pretty bad as well.

Might have a road trip Monday on the cards, as there is a little weather system Sunday that was looking very promising for Limone (Piemonte) yesterday with around 50cms (though this morning that's less 25%) as my mate has a guide booked and that's where they'll be going to if that happens from Aosta - and I have to take OH to Turin Monday - and think I have a dog sitter sorted Cool
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@Weathercam, definitely better than the previous day, although had to steer the skis most of the time rather than just letting them run!
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Hi @Weathercam, @KenX, @Hells Bells, thanks for all the updates on here - keeps the interest up. I'm coming to Briançon on the sleeper train for the week commencing Saturday 11th Feb with my 10 year old. He's out with Gavin Crosby in the mornings (and I have a couple of afternoons booked with Gavin too) so I'm flying solo most mornings. I know it's half term, so I'm sure you'll all be jolly busy, but if anyone fancies saying hello/having a ski/coffee/early beer, I'd be delighted to actually meet some snowheads in-the-flesh.
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@UkuleleDave, sadly, I'm now back in the UK until 10th March.
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Went round to Nevache and skinned up to Refuge Buffère and then on towards Crête de Baude - snow's still in very good condition there and not that wind affected at all.

Though has to be said the descent down from the Refuge to the valley is down a very steep narrow track, and as snow cover in the forest is a bit thin, the track really is the only option.

Once up at the Refuge there are numerous options, not least a couple back over to Serre Che as it's only 6.3km as the crow flies from the Refuge to where we are.

The peak in the middle is the Grand Area, to the left of the peak is a ski tour route up from the Bergerie on the Granon road and to the right is the Col de Buffère.




http://youtube.com/v/f6eSnCa6xIo
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@UkuleleDave, pm me Very Happy
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
So went over to the Prorel sector today for the first time this season and spent the morning hooning on the Teles in the sun on perfect empty pistes Very Happy

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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
We were over in La Grave on Friday; pretty good snow to be honest. Gavin had a chat with a guide before we set out and he advised us not to drop down to P1 so we lapped top to mid station for most of the day; great fun despite one of my skis deciding to grab the goods on its own.



But on Saturday Gavin found some nice trees to dodge





It took us quite a while to ski it all out too, sorry snowHead snowHead


Last edited by So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much on Thu 2-02-17 21:32; edited 2 times in total
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
wink


Last edited by You know it makes sense. on Thu 2-02-17 21:30; edited 1 time in total
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
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Too much wine at lunch time Toofy Grin



This was this afternoon at the CAF Avalanche Safety demonstration.

As you can see not just about using transceivers, but digging technique, stabilising the victim and preparing for heli evac etc

And tonight it's snowing heavily according to my sources and photos WhatsApped, though unfortunately not here but down in Limone, Piemonte, I should be there by 11:00 tomorrow having dropped OH off at Turin Airport, then I have a green card for a couple of days with a friend looking after the Rando Chiens - though think at best will only be around 25cm.
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I haven't been up the hill since I've been back from Limone, and yesterday Friday, friends reported 5-10cm of fresh.

Today I passed on ski touring with the CAF as I didn't want to sign up as maybe the weather would be grim, but I did have a plan just in case weather was not too bad, and that was to take the dogs on a long hike up to a valley and then along the valley to the start of the climb and hopefully score some fresh.

Driving out on the Izoard road snow was coming down heavy, and by the time I parked up at Cervieres I was glad I was carrying goggles and other bad weather gear, though in fact they were just snow flurries.

This is the cross country route to Les Fonts - my plan was to climb a ski tour route up through the trees in the middle of the pic and then on to the ridge.


Only trouble was that snow was quite deep.


And in the end it was getting too much so after a few turns became obvious Beanie couldn't hack it, or more to the point it would take a long while to get down, so only one thing for it.


Which did somewhat curtail my skiing, Kiki was finding the going tough out of the trees, but once in the lighter fresher powder was not an issue.

Fair bit of ice climbing going on as well.


Strava Route https://www.strava.com/activities/847142244
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Ding Dong Cool

Great slack country 4km descent this morning off the back, though was a tad concerned at the remnants of a big slab that had gone, first time I've seen one go there, but not that surprising after the recent strong winds and that slope is feckin steep.



More pics on the link in the sig.

Hopefully snow's a coming though forecast keeps changing every six hours rolling eyes
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 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?
Had a brilliant first day today in Serre Chevalier. Was feeling a little worried about conditions upon our arrival last night from what the rep said (she implied things weren't great) but it's been a fantastic day! All the pistes I've been on have been in fine condition, and mainly quiet. Haven't queued at all at any lifts. In Villeneuve and Monetier today, spending lots of time on my favourite kind of long, wide, cruisy red runs, such as Cucumelle - resort seems brilliant for these. Hoping for some fresh snow just so my partner can make the most of the plentiful off piste we keep seeing from the lifts, but it's all great on piste so far!
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@catclaires, yes friends are enjoying the pistes here.

I wrote this in the more general Weather OutLook thread but thought it was worth posting here.

I was pretty sure that around this time last year we had three to four days of rain in the valley so was looking back at our Jan 2016 blog and what's amazing is how much better the conditions have been this season compared to last year and that's down to the heavy snow falls back in November above 2,000 and then subsequent cold temps.

On the 25 Jan I wrote Yesterday it was T'shirt and shorts in the afternoon as the temperature hit 29C in the direct sunshine and 13.5C in the shade.

Then 31st Jan Woke up to around 10cm, this morning, and temps are slowly on the rise (+2.5 at 10:00), so now seeing light sleet which, if it continues, will gradually turn to rain.

And then looking at the Feb Blog

Feb 1st All the new snow we had here in Serre Che, yesterday morning, has disappeared, either blown or melted away in the unseasonably warm temperatures.

And then reading through Feb we had various snow falls with the weekend of 13 & 14 Feb being SnowMageddon down in this part of the world.

So it's all about making the most of the conditions and my focus is obviously off piste, for the piste skiers like last season this year conditions are superb though light could well be an issue this week, but we have a mixed bag of friends staying (two beginners and intermediates) and they're all having a great time.

That said I took advantage of the slightly milder conditions (+4.5) to go out on the bike cycling up to Montgenevre to see what conditions were like, where as the day before we did some great slack country, see Serre thread and found 4km of untracked!

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Desperate is way too strong a word but I am struggling to see where the next snowfall is going to come from? Serre Che fortunately seems to have missed some of the lower level rain experienced in the North but equally has missed out on a higher top up. What's the word on the street? Any expected freshies in the air? All of the models seem to indicate some snow but I know the weather systems around Serre Che can be very fickle. I made a serious blunder 3 years ago opting to ski in Montgenevre in 10cm fresh for the day and missing some epic conditions in Serre Che!
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@RetroBod, things look pretty desperate up there at the moment - does not look at all pleasant!

Looks like this is the start of the weather, and on past experience, going to have to be a case of "wait and see" as to what we'll get as the forecasts are never accurate even on the day.

We have two groups of friends staying close by and I keep telling them to try their chains now while the weather is not too bad, prior to them driving back to Turin in their hire cars on Sat, because if it's snowing, then the "no friends on a powder day" rule will be enforced!

Went up to the Refuge Napoleon yesterday and witnessed the aftermath of a massive avalanche, reports and pics on the link below in my sig, twas very sobering and semi ruined what was an excellent fun day.
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RetroBod wrote:
Desperate is way too strong a word but I am struggling to see where the next snowfall is going to come from? Serre Che fortunately seems to have missed some of the lower level rain experienced in the North but equally has missed out on a higher top up. What's the word on the street? Any expected freshies in the air? All of the models seem to indicate some snow but I know the weather systems around Serre Che can be very fickle. I made a serious blunder 3 years ago opting to ski in Montgenevre in 10cm fresh for the day and missing some epic conditions in Serre Che!


Weathercam will have a better idea but it does look that area of the Alps is due to get some snow. I'm keeping an eye out as due to come on 8th April with family so am obviously keen to see massive dumps
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Just got down after skiing with some guests, was very windy in Chantemerle, less so elsewhere, trying to snow all day but rain from around 1800m and below..... Perked up a bit after 14:30 and was snowing mediumly (about 5cm or so) so maybe it will happen tomorrow onwards as forecast......
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Just arrived out Tuesday. Son-in-law and his mates are settled in til Monday...beer, ski, beer, ski, eat, beer, ski, eat, beer, shower.....
I took off to Laus yesterday for a short stretch the legs couple of hours. Nice in the sunshine.
Today went up towards the Col des Peygus in poor weather. Went up via the Ravin d'Izoard which was a steep unpleasant ascent, especially alone and thinking I was on a shortcut between two sections of road. Duh. Good kick-turn practice. Had to turn around just below the col when visibility more or less disappeared and the snow got heavier. I saw nothing of the avalanche on the Col de La Roya which is the next col to the Peygus. Some old avalanche debris where I was but in the conditions very difficult to tell. You can never assume anything. The avalanche risk was supposed to be low yesterday and today.

Anyhow, hopefully there will be some more snow in the next few days. I drove down through northern France in the rain but it was all dry after Chambery. I just knew....
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