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The view from............ Val d'Isere and the Espace Killy

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Cubanpete Glad you liked your first day! More to follow
Dr John enjoy your beer - about to head out and get mine off Rab.
mooney058 I meant javeliN turn....... you lift the inside ski at the start of the turn so you are standing on and balancing on the new turning ski and then rotate it around the arc..... as a result you end up with the top ski crossed over the downhill ski since you keep the hips / upper body nice and quiet (aka separated!).
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Steve: as you requested it, here's some constructive criticism of your video: The action you're trying to show occupies a very small fraction of the frame, if you can zoom smoothly to follow the skier the viewer will get a much better impression about what the skier is doing. When you show the first skier with a circle, you include three skiers in the circle - I was left wondering which one you were talking about. I got the impression that you're drawing and talking at the same time; does the software let you do those in two separate takes so you can concentrate fully on one? A lot of the time the video is paused; I would rather you let the same section run through and then repeat it a couple of times (with maybe the second run through in slow-mo) as some of the things you're trying to show are to the untrained eye quite subtle. Finally, with something like turn shape, if you're able to actually trace the path the skier is taking and compare the two traces I think it would be more persuasive. Or, if you can, do a series of super-imposed stop frames in the style of Ron LeMaster.

Hope that helps! This sort of thing is hard to get right, so please carry on.
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Kieranm. TDC (Steve's colleagues) have an I phone/pad app that this subject (turn shape) is covered very clearly, professional quality camera work etc. Steve uses an iPhone the zoom on the iPhone is digital and not very good quality.
The app is cheap as chips by the way.

Steve are you taking my off piste group next week?

I don't think the conditions look that good for next week looking on 9 day snow forecast. With the faceting you mentioned last week it sounds pretty dodge if we do manage to get a decent dump? They're (S.F) are predicting about 10 cm at mo so just a bit more than a dusting?
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Chris ski H thanks for the plug about the TDC app which we launched only a week or so before Xmas....... it is called 'How to Ski' app.... on the Apple App store. Yes for filming for these purposes I used my iphone hence the issues of zoom etc..... this was my first attempt at using my new app 'Coaches Eye'. Normally I would use a proper video camera when filming clients for in depth analysis on the hill side!

No Chris next week looks like you have Nicko for the Off Piste........ I am sure he will sniff something out for you all to enjoy next week - there are 3 of you booked on it at the moment but sure that will change! Think the faceting will be only a localised issue so don't worry to much.

Anyway must dash.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Sorry for going a bit off topic, but Chris ski H, Steve Angus, which off piste course is being run next week? What sort of level is it aimed at? Heading out Saturday, and could be very tempted if there are spaces ..... Toofy Grin
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This 7+ minute video was I believe shot yesterday:-


http://youtube.com/v/V9oh5k1OiXU
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Can anyone offer advice - I know all kids will be different and could be down to specific child, but I'll be skiing (afternoons) in March with my daughter who's 9 and will be going through her 3rd week of lessons in 3 years.

Question is are the home runs back into town as bad as people say on other threads? I've never stayed in Val D'Isere before, always skied over from Tignes but was with a group of guys and didn't really notice anything too difficult away from the blacks, so are we best coming back in on the blues via Le Fornet / La Daile / Le Laisinant, or best just to download in a bubble? Last thing I want to do is to knock her confidence.

Looking at the map is Santons an option?
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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!
Santons is an icy halfpipe of doom, and the rest are pretty gnarly for beginners. I'd bubble it down with the nipper.
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^ yep, don't risk it. Santons (when it's open) is horrible and the 'green' into La Daille is the hardest green run in the world. Definitely download with her.


Last edited by You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net. on Wed 9-01-13 17:33; edited 1 time in total
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reded78 wrote:
Can anyone offer advice - I know all kids will be different and could be down to specific child, but I'll be skiing (afternoons) in March with my daughter who's 9 and will be going through her 3rd week of lessons in 3 years.

Question is are the home runs back into town as bad as people say on other threads? I've never stayed in Val D'Isere before, always skied over from Tignes but was with a group of guys and didn't really notice anything too difficult away from the blacks, so are we best coming back in on the blues via Le Fornet / La Daile / Le Laisinant, or best just to download in a bubble? Last thing I want to do is to knock her confidence.

Looking at the map is Santons an option?


We're here this week, fantastic week by the way, bluebird every day, bit of snow forecast for Friday. Conditions on piste are fantastic and the warm (ish) weather for me has had no effect.

Getting back to town from the olympic side.......Santons is never open, and even if it were i believe its harsh....the face is fine at the top say 1km, then Shocked
eeek, its tough, for anyone who isnt an expert it's a case of try to make it down. We saw an instructor fall yesterday, slid for around 100m, its not super steep, just sheet ice in places, if you hit it, gulp hold your breath and try to find an edge. My OH is a good intermediate, and found it very tough, lol she did 100 yards on her ar*e Toofy Grin .

I certainly would not take a child in her 3rd week, no way jose, just download, or ski down to la daille and get the bus, much nicer.

Hope you have a good week, we have LOVED it, I now see why people rave about the espace killy, just superb...
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Ta Tordi - that certainly seems to be the consensus on many other threads and websites.

I’ll just have to take the 9 year old to La Folie Douce for an afternoon boogie on the way home!!!
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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.
reded78, no worries. Maybe water down her jagermeister in the Folie! wink
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Is OK, she likes it with Red Bull anyway!
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
SkiG Not to far off topic so don't worry. It is one of our TDC (the ski school I work for) off piste clinics. It is an 'Off-Piste Adventure Week' (see: http://www.tdcski.com/val_disere/off_piste_valdisere/off_piste_adventure_weeks) and has four people booked on it at the moment so there are spaces. It is €325 per person for 5 x 3 mornings. Let me know if you are interested and I will send you further details.

So what a great night last night was.... REALLY yummy dinner at the Phat Frog - authentic asian cuisine - I would recommend the duck wraps amongst other things on the menu - yummy!

The seasonnaire clinic sign up was a great success and we are now nearly up to 60 people wanting to do the program so Kieran and Ben will have a hell of a job trying to sort out all the groups etc....... thanks and good luck boys!




Another (probably / possibly / hopefully the last) sunny day in the French Alps. I decided on a change of scenery and we headed over to Tignes. Going 'Round the World' is such a nice loop around from Val Claret to Le Lac.

I was thinking about the location and set up for the new Aeroski lift that is going in this Summer...... they have got to do a hell of a lot of work to get it right and to make sure the wind does not affect it to much....... if the capacity up is to great then they may have over capacity problems on the slopes at the top of the Toviere in a similar way to the top of the Bellevarde where the new Fontaine Froide lift has made it just a little TOO busy!

Anyway it was a nice morning.

There is obviously a bug going around Val at the moment as a couple of our team had to go home at lunchtime with serious upset stomachs so there has been quite a lot lesson juggling going on this evening.

My afternoon was a fun one spent with 5 girls from YSE and helping them improve their skiing..... we run a number of promo lessons a season where we take chalet staff out for complimentary lessons (all in the name of PR obviously). These girls had only started skiing at the start of the Winter as they had come out here having never skied and being the 'crazy' Xmas and NY period they had hardly had a chance to ski so far. Anyway I took them up the Solaise and eventually they progressed to the point of being able to handle the Madelaine. Anyway they all seemed to really enjoy themselves as they all wanted to sign up to the seasonairres program in Blue Note afterwards!

Talking about chalet staff etc........ can I just add my voice in support of the Le Ski court case that is going on...... I normally try and be neutral and stay out of things but I really hope that UK chalet companies are able to keep on offering the wonderful hosting services that they have done so for a number of years...... 18th Feb the Albertville court will decide!

Anyway folks take care and see you tomorrow........ boarding in the morning and off piste in the afternoon on skis - should be fun!

P.S. Yes reded78 as others have said.... download, download, download..... definitely the way forward.... three weeks of lessons puts her in the category of early intermediate (probably). Best to not chance anything.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Thanks Steve,

I actually emailed Sara this morning to have a chat about it. I'm having a bit of a dilemma, would be great if you could have a minute to give me your thoughts (and anyone else!!). Started a new thread to avoid spamming this one (which I love!!) http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?p=2194764#2194764 on the Bend Ze Kneessection.

Conditions look amazing, 56.5 hrs til takeoff!!
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SkiG Commented as requested.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
SNOW! Hopefully get some freshies tomorrow. Good day with friends doing a season here; solaise, fornet, ok/orange then 2 hour lunch in la die. Sensible après, girding loins for a gentile (??) session tonight. See you in the Alex around 6.30 if you're in town.
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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?
Dr John wrote:
......, girding loins for a gentile (??) session tonight.


Ready for your Bar Mitzvah?
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Quote:

There is obviously a bug going around Val at the moment as a couple of our team had to go home at lunchtime with serious upset stomachs

Oh no, not another of those Val D'Isere bugs. Sad Hope you escape, Steve.
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
No bugs here fingers crossed.... Smile

Cloud am, very light snow since around 2pm, still going, flatish light obviously, but still good enough for another top day.

Highlight was the face at lunchtime, so different to the end of the day, some slight icy bits but otherwise a blast... Skullie

Should be light snow pretty much all night, looking forward to a good day (last) tomorrow.
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rogg, haha, waaaay past that age. Mind you, past the age to be in dicks tea bar until 3am, but still did it.
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Well you don't often see that......... perhaps VERY early and VERY late season BUT that is about to change tomorrow as it has been snowing pretty hard all afternoon and all evening and should continue all night long........ YIPPEE.

Well it was certainly a lot colder today and you could tell around the resort that people were not totally prepared for it...... I was not cold but caught a little bit by surprise initially.... welcome back to Winter!

So on my board again this morning I headed up to the Val glacier and although the ambience up there was lovely as the cloud cover rolled in the flat sections are tiresome on a board. Anyway we had a blast and worked on (amongst other things) Ollies and Nollies. At the end I took them down Piste L and once again I reminded myself that it is a jolly tough blue piste it really is!

Anyway lunch time there were a fair few glum faces around with various persons not feeling 100% and thank you pam w I think it is just a general bug and not Val specific and yes thank you I shall try and steer clear of anything.

In the afternoon I swapped my board for my off piste ski gear in conditions that were definitely worsening and the light was getting flatter and the clouds more and more threatening. Right on queue it started snowing about 2pm as I headed off with my off piste clients who are out in Val from the UK company Inspired to Ski ([ur]http://www.inspiredtoski.com/[/url]). I was running an off piste session for 4 of their guests this afternoon and we decided to head for the Charvet.

The conditions were definitely getting worse but we pushed on anyway. It turned out to be a great fun afternoon.... the good thing about poor weather is that not as many people venture off piste and today was no exception. A HUGE slide (my blooming battery on my phone died (well got too cold temporarily) just as I tried to take a photo) had come down in the last few days and had crossed all the way down to the river at the bottom so we had to do some interesting de-touring around the bottom but we got there in the end. There was a lot of signs of creepers that had been moving and releasing all over the place in general but with this cold temperature there was no danger this afternoon.

Yes neilkav the Face at lunchtime (well to be honest at any time apart from last thing in the day) is a totally different prospect from end of the day isn't it? I always say to people (many people have an aim of wanting to ski the Face at some point during their stay) that you are best hitting it about mid morning...... after you have warmed up and are ready, not too tired (or hungry) and before it gets crazy with people way out their depth attempting it and before it gets either too scraped or (more in the Spring time) too mogulled!

Anyway folks fingers crossed this snow continues... don't suppose it will look like this tomorrow!

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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
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Steve, I've been reading your posts after I stumbled across this website a week ago. Your best one had to be this afternoon when I found out its been snowing heavily! I'm due to get the Eurostar to Tignes tomorrow night and was a bit worried about the warm temperatures and the lack of snow. This has cheered me right up. Keep up the great posts, it's nice to read about a job/lifestyle I can only dream about Smile
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andyc182 WELCOME TO SH's!!!!

Glad my posts are getting you excited..... sure you'll have a fantastic week in Tignes and....

MORNING UPDATE........ its still snowing heavily this morning and I would have thought we have had about 20cm down here in the Village overnight - should bode well up higher!

But fear not EVERYONE - there never was and never is a 'lack of snow' here in the Espace Killy - we have had a VERY good December in terms of snowfall and we were just having a couple of weeks without snow fall and yes the temperature went up quite high but it really did not have too much of an effect on the overall conditions here...... there is plenty to everyone happy.

HAPPY SLIDING!
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What a cool photo - courtesy of Radio Val d'Isere this morning!
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Powder skiing through the trees the way to go today, waist deep and face shots every turn. Followed by long lunch at L'Arolay in Fornet and Alex and/or moris for beers in an hour. Getting avi'd up for fresh track hunting tomorrow to make it final day of possibly best skiing week ever.

Steve Angus, were you lapping la daille this morning? think I saw you before we dived into the trees.
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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.

What a difference 24 hours makes - compare the picture above to the picture taken 24 hours beforehand!

Dr John : I was down in La Daille for a short period this morning - not quite lapping but yes I was there!

As reported earlier it had snowed a good 20 cms overnight and the av risk was back up to 3. We headed up the Olympic (it was 10 mins late opening which is not bad given the clearance work they had to do). The wind was OK, the snow GREAT but the vis was varying between non-existant and not bad at all. Anyway we got some great powder action in - first time they had ridden a board in the powder and they loved it. We did the Diebold and 3J a few times and then the weather really moved in so we stopped for a break at the Folie..... when we came back out the weather had not improved much so they decided to call it a day so we headed down.


Sally pulling the moves on the board during one of the few breaks in the weather.

This afternoon we went out for a TDC team ski and we had an EXCELLENT time. We were looking for new lines and routes to take with off piste clients and sharing the collective wisdom we all had for the various routes etc. A couple of new lines from the 'Bus Stop' down through the Laisennant trees.... ditto down the side of Super S to the Super S bumps trees and a new route I had never done before to get into the avalanche couloir! A very fun, tiring but satisfying afternoon!

The snow had a definite slab on the top and the constant wind we have had as this snow continues could cause quite a lot of problems - we shall see! The snow was sluffing a fair bit and was not really bonding too well to the layers underneath - so stay safe out there folks in the next few days!

We finished it all off with a couple of drinks in the Blue Note and have popped home to change and then we are all out for an impromptu TDC dinner at Le Lodge - our favourite restaurant in town!

So it is still snowing out there and it supposed to carry on a little while longer and then hopefully the clouds will clear tomorrow.... could be a mix between clouds and sun tomorrow - we shall see.

Our chalet guests are in for two weeks so I don't have to head to Geneva tomorrow - yeee haa..... instead I am teaching snowboarding again tomorrow and then shall probably have the afternoon of to catch up on a massive pile of emails that have collected in my inbox! EEEEEEEK
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As always Steve, great updates - can't wait to get out there on the 19th Smile

To be fair, I'm that desperate for snow I'd spend all day in that zero-visibility.... maybe I'm a sucker for punishment but there's something strangely compelling about riding just by 'feel' and knowing you could possibly straight-line it into certain death Laughing
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Great to see the season in full swing and great snow! Looks like a fair amount coming your way over the next few days as well. Can't wait to get out to Val again, but need to wait until March Very Happy

Booked into a ski new gen off piste course. Can. Not. Wait. Very Happy

Happy sliding and keep the info coming Steve... it's great.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:

BACK TO THE BEST...

I had a fun morning teaching in IDEAL conditions for a first timer snowboarder under the Village lift.... soft snow, no-one around and perfect visibility. It was a lovely morning and Mick did SO well for his first ever lesson....a real technical thinker that took everything in his stride, processed it and then did it - a pleasure to teach...... and at a shy short of 60 doing mighty well for his age on a snowboard!

I went for a short little slide around at lunchtime and found some nice powder around..... but wanted to have a restful afternoon so did not stay out too long!

Spent most of the afternoon trying to organise my 2 seasonnaire groups that I am running this Winter..... calling, leaving messages, collecting payments etc etc etc - takes ages. But nearly sorted.

A welcome to fellow snowhead Chris H who arrived in town this evening along with Dave who is hear for his ISIA (BASI Level 3) Off Piste course...... just spent an hour and a bit running through how the touring skis etc all work. And showing him how to put the harscheisen on and off..... as well as giving him some wise words about what the snow pack is looking like out there..... go Dave and best of luck.

So check out the following picture (not taken by me):



THAT IS WHY PISTES SUCH AS SANTONS ARE CLOSED .... the pisteurs are worried about the natural slides that can come down EVEN after the Gasex's have done their work on the Banane slope above..... however this slide came down (fortunately) in the middle of the night and not during the day....... even yesterday during the day there were dozens of people ducking the ropes at the top that said 'closed' .... imagine what would have happened if someone had been standing there when this snow came down? The snow was over 4 metres deep in the basin.... a real terrain trap!

Finally for today I was reading the following article on www.pistehors.com - a roundup of the avalanche activity so far in the Alps..... the following line really made me wonder....

Quote:
Following the New Year a teenager was killed skiing off piste with his dad at Gourette. The incident caused a polemic in the resort when it was discovered he had an expensive helmet camera but no avalanche beacon.


So tomorrow I am on the board with the same people as today.... should be fun..... possibly some more snow (and in quantity possibly) for tomorrow - we shall see.
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Hi guys, just back from a fantastic week, had a ball!! Steve Angus, I had lessons with one of the guts from British Alpine Ski School, had a great few hours with him and got a bit of my mojo back thankfully!!

Long day today, thought the 3 hour smooth transfer last week was too good to be true (went with Skiworld, flew Monarch via Grenoble), set off late, was 3 1/2 hours, mental bus driver and Grenoble was its usual bedlam, so much so a load of flights were delayed, guess the fog didn't help. We left around 45 minutes late.

Both myself and Mr jocrad have come down with Val d'Isease as the Skiworld guys were calling it - horrible hacking cough, dry throat, hot/cold sweats. People been dropping like flies at The Lodge. Anyway, Mr jocrad has not got a chest infection, probably breathing through a wet Buff neckwarmer due to the snow coming down all day yesterday hasn't helped. I'm off to my bed soon, back to work on Monday after 3 weeks off!!

Anyway, loved VDI, I am sure we will be back.... Very Happy

Looking forward to hearing how the rest of the season goes
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Quote:

one of the guts from British Alpine Ski School

Laughing
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Oops, 2am start yesterday, can you tell!!

Very Happy
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Quote:

On another note ..... last night a rather drunken 21 yr old British man thought that he would recreate the scene from the famous French ski film "Bronzés font du ski". In a nutshell the un-named guy climbed one of the lift pylons on the Rogoney lift at the Rond Pond des Pistes... climbed onto one of the chairs and fell asleep. The Police Municipale were unable to rouse him through snowballs and shouting and the fire service had to be called in to go get him down...... his embarrassed girlfriend was not to happy when he finally was brought back down!


Should I actually admit that I knew this guy....... um, not sure. Apparently he and his friend climbed up and when his friend saw the Police, his friend managed to jump over to the pylon ladder and get away leaving poor Rocky to realise that he was too scared of heights to make the leap. Three piste bashers turned up to spread some light on the situation, police tried to talk him down and he was too scared to do it. His friend did come back but pretended not to know anything about how he got there although he did help to throw snowballs at him to stop him from going to sleep! The Police had to call the Pompiers from Tignes with their bucket lift to come and get him down. He is s very lucky lad - not only did the Pompiers not charge him for their time, the Police thought it was the funniest thing they had seen in a long time and didn't arrest him - probably helped by the fact that by the time they'd got him down he had all of 20 minutes to get home, grab his bags and get on his bus to Geneva and out of town!

Quote:

Both myself and Mr jocrad have come down with Val d'Isease as the Skiworld guys were calling it - horrible hacking cough, dry throat, hot/cold sweats.


Yup - I got that one too but was staying in an apartment on my own for 10 days so don't think it is anything to do with the hotel - more to do with dry air so your natural defenses are lowered. Only just started to feel better after a week of it but it is the first time in quite a few years that I've managed to get ill in Val. You are lucky you didn't go down with the gastro that was going round too!

Great time as ever, although was a great relief to get rid of the New Year crowds on the Saturday - hadn't realised just how busy it was until they'd all gone and I had three days of bliss.
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The staff were saying it was going all round resort, at 8 Euros a time for cough medicine I'll bet the pharmacy was raking it in. The air was so dry, the weather app on my phone said only around 18% humidity all week until the snow hit!!
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Our final night in val and off to the Arlberg tomorrow starting with 6am bus to Geneva:(

Will be back next year with so much more to explore. The slopes are in fantastic condition and the dump of fresh snow provided some amazing powder. I much prefer this place to Zermatt,les arc or courchevel.
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Excited now will be coming out next Saturday. Got a private lesson booked with tdc sunday pm..fingers crossed they can sort my bad habits!
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jocrad yea the dry air does not help... but as Scampi Dellahanti says it tends to strike in many ski resorts and more importantly at random.... in the old days the water processing plant did not cope well which made things worse but now I genuinely think it is the massive influx of visitors from all 4 corners of the world that combine in the party atmosphere of Val d'Isere and the bugs spread as easily as they could do anywhere..... touch wood it has been many years since I caught 'whatever IT is.'

Cubanpete yes the pistes are in GREAT condition especially since the last dump of snow - possibly the best conditions I have ever seen actually on piste!

Tinkling - looks like you are booked in with Kieran at this stage! He'll whip you into shape!

COLDER

What a lovely day on the slopes...... working on some steeper and variables terrain in the morning and then at lunch when we got back into town we stopped to watch the oldest at 3 finishing her first week of lessons off... she is with the Jardins des Enfants here in Val and they outsource their lesson to the ESF.... Sara looked ever so cute and and done so well for a three year old in her first week....





In general the sun really did not break through the clouds today and it REALLY felt cold today... I think the last few weeks of above seasonal temperatures had turned me soft!

In the afternoon I had Mick from yesterday and it became apparent that he had really practiced what we had worked on yesterday but he was using his mates stiff board that was too stiff for him.... we swapped boards and he used my soft teaching board and he really kicked back bottom.... we did the greeen triangle and he loved every second of it - BRAVO!

This evening I have been out for a drink with fellow SH Chris H and he is looking forward to a week off piste with TDC.

This week more snow is forecast on an off with low temperatures so it could be an interesting week.... at the moment I only have a half day teaching tomorrow so have a LONG list of admin to catch up on - so the glamourous life of this job will have to be put to one side!
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Steve Angus, he's setting up a spam link. In a few days he'll be back to edit his post and insert the link. I'm sure the Mods will delete him.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
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Cheers Rob.
ski holidays     



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