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Grand Montets fire

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Fire at the lift station Sad

https://france3-regions.francetvinfo.fr/auvergne-rhone-alpes/haute-savoie/chamonix/haute-savoie-incendie-cours-gare-du-telepherique-grands-montets-chamonix-1539050.html
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https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=700897660267358&id=100010413903682
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Oh that's sad!
Argentiere is a great resort. I suppose when a fire like that starts there's not much to do but let it burn itself out. I can't imagine the fire brigade being able to get up there with any ease.
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From reading bits there has been Heli drops of water but it must be a tough place to fight a intense fire like this Sad
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Not great but at least no-one badly hurt. One cable snapped and the other at risk. They've evacuated some of the apartments/houses near the base according the the Mayor's office.
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Terrible business. There's no putting that out until it burns itself out and there is no way it's getting fixed before winter. Adios Grand Montets. Just when they were building a new lift as well Sad

Midi buggered, Charamillon at Le Tour buggered, Brevent buggered earlier this summer and now GM buggered. Compagnie du Mont Blanc are cursed...
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Meltus wrote:
...Midi buggered, Charamillon at Le Tour buggered, Brevent buggered earlier this summer and now GM buggered. Compagnie du Mont Blanc are cursed...


Buggar! Sad
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OH on facetime with her sister who lives near the tennis in Chamonix, not surprisingly, smoke very visible.

It certainly gets its share of catastrophic fires does the Chamonix valley!
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Reports say that the cable car station is destroyed, cables ruined, one cable car is lying shattered on the glacier. All in all pretty bad for the upcoming season, tho fortunately still saying nobody hurt and the fire is now out.
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@snowdave, locals suggesting several years for rebuild but who knows right now?
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https://snowbrains.com/chamonix-cable-car-fire/
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Seems that these places could do with a fire suppression system (e.g., a water mist system for commercial low hazard properties).
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Good to see nobody got hurt.

China recently built a whole rail station in 9 hours.

Argentiere should be able to repair it before next Winter.
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Has Plan Joran been affected? You’d hope that even if they can’t fix Lognan in time they could still run the new PJ lift to get people up.
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Blimey, that’s a shocker. No way they are rebuilding that, getting new cables, cable cars etc in 2 months...
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Yeah that's proper fecked. Not good news for anyone buying a top tickets season pass for sure.
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@bigtuboflard, as far as I can see the Plan Joran bubble is fine ... unless cables have been bouncing around.
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bigtuboflard wrote:
Has Plan Joran been affected? You’d hope that even if they can’t fix Lognan in time they could still run the new PJ lift to get people up.


With access limited it could be a good season to ski GM wink
I always thought it must have been an amazing ski area in the 70s / 80s before the crowds arrived.
These days it is just a giant mogul field (all be it a fun one)

Looks like it has taken out both the bottom and top cable cars - so the impact is going to be major and longer term.
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@Dave of the Marmottes, might not be buying the MBU this year...
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Compagnie du Mont Blanc released a statement saying GM will open via Plan Joran whilst they work to fix the two damaged cable cars (which they admit will take months).

Also, the Charamillon gondola at Le Tour will remain closed all winter as they don't want to fix the cable then they're planning to build a whole new lift next summer anyway. This however, is hearsay at this stage...

I have heard from lifties that there's fewer jobs going this winter.
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@Haggis_Trap, what's wrong with giant mogul fields? Anyway, it was been one huge, lovely mogul field when I first skied it in 1989...

@Meltus, just drive round to Vallorcine. Should keep the crowds away.

Actually, it is a bit shocking that so many of the CMB lifts have been out of action this summer.
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On the one hand, that really sucks for all those whose livelihoods are affected by this. On the other hand, the best skiing I have had on the GM has been from touring up from the Bochard before the top lift opens.@Haggis_Trap could well be right.
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Communique from C du MB;

In the early afternoon of Tuesday 11th September, a fire broke out during work to repair the roofing of the upper station of the 1st cable-car between Argentière & Lognan (Les Grands Montets ski area). This work was entrusted to a specialist sub-contractor.
The fire spread almost instantaneously throughout all the buildings of the arrival station, creating severe damage to the infrastructures of the two cable-cars.
Of the eight cables which equip the two sections of the cable-car, five gave way as a result of the heat generated by the fire causing one cabin at the top of the Grands Montets to plunge onto the glacier below, the second cabin being immobilized on its bearer cables.
As far as the lower section between Argentière & Lognan is concerned, one cabin is retained by its bearer cable & the other by the tractor cable.

Thankfully, there are no victims.

The investigations will continue during the coming days before the reconstruction work may begin, work which will take a goodly number of months.
To face up to this new ordeal, the teams at the Grands Montets with the backing of all the staff of the Compagnie du Mont-Blanc, will make every effort to permit visitors & partners to access the two cables car of the Grands Montets ski area as soon as possible.

Despite being deprived of its two cable-cars, the Grands Montets ski area will be open for the winter season with access via the Plan Joran gondola, ski on the Lognan plateau with the new chair-lift giving access to the new beginners’ zone as well as all the trails accessible from the Bochard gondola & the Herse & Retour Pendant chair-lifts.
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Oh Damn.

I booked my trip in a chalet just by the base station for January a few days ago. Hope that the Plan Joran copes with capacity for then.

Good that no one is hurt, at least.
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@acrim, the cable car had a max capacity of 750/hour.

PJ Bubble handles 3,200/hour so I'm pretty sure it will cope.
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under a new name wrote:
@acrim, the cable car had a max capacity of 750/hour.

PJ Bubble handles 3,200/hour so I'm pretty sure it will cope.


Good to know. Thanks.
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under a new name wrote:
@acrim, the cable car had a max capacity of 750/hour.

PJ Bubble handles 3,200/hour so I'm pretty sure it will cope.


And the bubble is running at way below it's capacity in Jan, so there will be no hassle at all then.

No top ticket next season though, and has there been any word on the state of the Hearse with the cable dropping on it?

IMO they need to install some sort of pop up catering on the Hearse deck, like the marquee bars you get in StA etc. Bet the Plan Joran restaurant are rubbing their hands together after a couple of years of being side lined by the new bubble drop off site.
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@midgetbiker, they had quite a few DJ and food events on the Hearse deck last season (and the season before). Would seem like a plan.

Would be good if the Plan Joran management actually employed enough and adequately motivated staff to cope otherwise it'll be a bunfight. Always seems busy enough to me.

Although I think Plan Joran's problem is more to do with extremely averagely crappy steak and chips for €38 than with being sidelined.
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Well this sucks. So that cable car is out, Charamillon is apparently going or not going to run (?) and then did someone say something about Brevent? Our flights are into Geneva so now I'm trying to think of another option that is

a) Snow sure in March
b) Has plenty of activities for non-skiers
c) Can tick some boxes with families

Meribel? Les Deux Alpes? La Clusaz looks nice but is it snow sure in March or it is a crapshoot? b) is important since my wife would be happier sitting in a spa. Maybe we just need to stay in Courmayeur but our favorite hotel there has jacked up their prices.
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ItaloSkier wrote:
. Maybe we just need to stay in Courmayeur but our favorite hotel there has jacked up their prices.


They'll be jacking them up even more now if they haven't already done so since yesterday - best get in quick!
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Lovely.

Also looking at Grindelwald. Best for skiing? Maybe not... thought it might be good for the family.
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@ItaloSkier, Charamillon likely to run.

Brevent will be fine.

How many times were you planning to use the top benne at the Grands Montets anyway?
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@On the rocks, doubt it.
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@Val Desire, sounds like the roofing contractor and their insurers are about to have some fun, I suspect that the cost of the 'fix' may well be more than their indemnity.
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Maybe its just an incentive for me to try some other nearby resorts, as well. MBU also offers up Courmayeur which is an easy hop over. What to do...
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@ItaloSkier, MBU annual pass not so much more pricey that we would not save any money by downgrading, as it were.
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Well, we just go in for a 6 out of 7 day pass. Buying a family pass of four - two adults, two kids (assuming they run a special to purchase the pass before November 30th is pretty cheap. I think we ended up averaging something like 230 Euro a person. Compare that to what you have to pay here in the U.S. at a "high end" mountain.
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What a shame. They do seem to have had some extraordinary bad luck over the last 20 years in the chamonix valley.

Looks like we may have got some of the last lift served skiing on the Montees for a couple of years. Hope they take the opportunity to upgrade their systems. Had a fantastic 3 days there at the end of April last season.
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ItaloSkier wrote:
Well this sucks. So that cable car is out, Charamillon is apparently going or not going to run (?) and then did someone say something about Brevent? Our flights are into Geneva so now I'm trying to think of another option that is

a) Snow sure in March
b) Has plenty of activities for non-skiers
c) Can tick some boxes with families

Meribel? Les Deux Alpes? La Clusaz looks nice but is it snow sure in March or it is a crapshoot? b) is important since my wife would be happier sitting in a spa. Maybe we just need to stay in Courmayeur but our favorite hotel there has jacked up their prices.

Pretty much everywhere is snow sure in March

Personally I wouldn't say Chamonix is good for families.

Activities for non-skiers could go two ways. Tignes for example has a fairly new swimming centre and sports centre - so you could spend a lot of time in those. Or you need to find a nice large town to stay in that has lots of shops and cafes.
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Quote:

Chamonix is good for families


(Somewhat self evidently)... depends what you want and whether where you stay ticks those boxes.

We are 3-4 minutes walk from Brevent/Savoy. So when my bro and his (then) young daughters stayed they could easily walk to lessons and come back at lunchtime for lunch. He could ski with us all day and non-skiing-Mum could do her own thing.

Exactly what was required. And non-ski activities possible in the afternoons when they were often not in the mood for more skiing.

But Chamonix does require a little research and thought, by nature of its situation and geography.
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