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

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
[url]|https://thumbsnap.com/iX38WDM7[/url]
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Better weather than forecast

It was nice to have a relative lie in this morning and better still that Olivia did not rise until 8am... anyway I headed to the meeting point at 9am only to get a call from the client saying that after a particularly heavy one yesterday they were running a long way behind schedule - queue an extra 30min chill time!

Anyway after another freeze overnight we decided to play it safe and start at the bottom again before heading back up to the magic carpet when it softened a little.

It turned into a pretty successful morning all in all.


The ski test area on the snow front as the snow line recedes day by day.... but another couple of weeks left in the snow I am sure.

Lunchtime was a pretty eventful hour or so as Clares family were all leaving then so I headed up to see them off and it was a frantic set of hugs and au revoirs as bags were thrown in the bus etc but they got off OK!

The afternoon was spent with a nice couple from London who would normally ski with Clare but having her family here this week and them leave today Clare moved the booking over to me. Anyway they wanted to work on slush and moguls so that is exactly what we found in abundance! Doing a few laps of Tommeuse there was some fun and games to be had before the main event; a trip down the Face. This was again rather slushy as you can imagine but they conquered it admirably!

My periscope was done after skiing and the weather was moving in. It had threatened to move in all day little by little but it finally dropped a few flakes but nothing at all substantial. There was a persistent breeze around town all day but I am not sure whether it will all come to much!

https://www.pscp.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1mnxeVgZpPaKX?autoplay&t=4

bar_shaker - hmm I know that viewing having worked in an apartment in the building there in the Summer..... anyway lets hope the rock and snowfall barrier at the bottom does its thing when that rock decides it has had enough of watching from above!

This evening has been rather relaxed and I played with Olivia for a while which was super and now it is time for another series of Britain Got Talent!

Tomorrow is another day on the hill; Clare is heading down the hill for an Easter Sunday kids egg hunt and party and I am working in the am and doing some jobs in the afternoon!

TTFN
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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?
Happy Easter

I dont know if Olivia knew it or whether it was just a fluke but there were some tiny steps that arrived at our bedside far too early this morning and she had her Easter egg and present in hand.... she was far too excited and the day ended up starting far too early despite Clares best attempts to put her back in her bedroom for an hour. Anyway yes it was Easter Sunday!

So despite the early start, with Clare not teaching today it was a rather relaxing start to the day. I got geared up for my lesson and although it was a grey day it was time to make the most of it. With a minimal freeze and thick clouds lurking around it was going to be tough to get good visibility and the best snow available. However what I was not anticipating was that there was a good few cm's of snow to play with (perhaps 3cm in places) which was just about enough to give a nice cushion!



Anyway it turned out to be good morning working with young Guy who is going for his BASI L1 this coming week along with his Dad and friend so it was a sort of double combo lesson in one. We worked on piste performance (short and long turns) and it turned out to be a very enjoyable morning.

When I got home Clare had already left to go down the valley to a friends Easter egg hunt / party so it meant I had a VERY rare few hours to myself. I had a chilled lunch then went to see a friend in La Daille (did my Periscope):

https://www.pscp.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1yNxaPLvvabJj?autoplay&t=26

.... and generally had a few hours to myself which was lovely!

After making some phone calls it has been a rather relaxing evening.

In local news things should be a lot quieter on the slopes this week although there are some school holidays (UK and France) still happening AND also the other piece of news is that the Cugnai lift has broken down and the engine needs replacing which means it will be out of action for the rest of the season but I dont think that should affect people too much!

Monday morning tomorrow but it is business as usual and (unless things change) I have my last full days teaching of the season tomorrow (just half days for the remainder of the week after that!).

TTFN
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Lovely and sunny but a little chilly

It is easy to get complacent at this time of the year and assume it will be scorcio just because of the sun is shining. So today was one of those days...

It started with tiny feet creeping into our bedroom early doors once again but being Easter Monday the creche was closed so Clare had Olivia for the day and there was no need to get up particularly early so we all turned over for an extra 30 mins sleep - yay!

I made my way to the meeting point and I was back with the whole of the family that I have been skiing with last week and this and despite a couple of lift pass issues we were off. It is certainly quieter out there this week than last so there are no lift queues which is welcome to see! With some fresh snow (about 5cm for the most part) up there and with colder temperatures the snow conditions felt MUCH more like Winter again! There was also a stiff breeze blowing once again so despite the sunny skies it was colder than it has been!

Anyway we had a fund morning and I taught the kids (and parents) a few little tricks and we even found some nice powder to play around in.

I headed back into town for lunch and then met my afternoon lesson which was the same lady as I taught last week. She felt as if she had regressed a little since last week so it was my job to freshen things up and we recapped on a few things from last week and she did so well.... the only blip was she had a brain freeze on the top part of the L by the top of the Datcha but that is the way it goes sometime. I must say that the snow on the glacier run was AMAZING all afternoon!

Anyway I think by the end of the afternoon she was pretty happy and more confident again!

https://www.pscp.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1yNxaPborkbJj?autoplay&t=20

I headed home and have had a pretty relaxed evening. Tomorrow I am just working in the morning and then have some chores to do in the afternoon and then heading out for dinner with a client after that... and then Wednesday evening is our end of season ski school 'curry night' which is always fun!

Tomorrow should be a little chilly and perhaps cloudy and I am teaching some family friends of the family I am with. Meanwhile in town the Adventure Film Festival starts which is fun (but dont think I am going to get a chance to go and see any of it - oh well!)

TTFN
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Winter has returned I think

It was definately colder this morning and there was some clouds floating around. I headed out to the meeting point to meet the friends of the older daughter from the family ive been teaching last week and this.... their first time ever on skis. They were on time and eager to get going. With no real freeze down in town overnight the snow down low softened up quickly and it felt quite warm as the clouds were not too thick. However at altitude there had been a fairly solid freeze and it was not going to soften up anytime soon as the clouds were thickening and there was a stiff northerly breeze once again. However it took an hour and a half before we got up the mountain and by the end of the 3 hours the girls were doing so well and in fact they even got some turning in down the steep and longer magic carpet.... A very successful first lesson - bravo. It was chilly up there though!

I had the afternoon off and did lots of chores at home and around town so it was a very successful afternoon.



The clouds thickened more and more and it was jolly chilly but then about 4pm it started to clear up and is has now left a chilly night and it could be as chilly as -10 by the morning in town and up high colder - wow!

I have just been out for dinner with a fellow sh, his friend and his son (who is doing is BASI 1 this week here in Val) and have had a very enjoyable time indeed - a jolly good laugh. I always forget how yummy the pizza's are at Chez Nano - recommended!

So this Friday will be the last update for this season (although the season still goes until the 1st May) and that will also be the last periscope too!

Talking of Periscope!

https://www.pscp.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1mnxeVNEgVLKX?autoplay&t=1

So another short but sweet end of season update for today.

TTFN
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You'll need to Register first of course.
Cheers Steve, great to chat tonight.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...


The snowline is retreating

After a VERY cold night last night it is hard to imagine how how the snow has receded so much (as is normal) in these Spring weeks. As can be seen in the photo above! It was -10 on the thermo on our balcony at breakfast time this am and obviously colder up top - seriously folks its mid April!

Anyway it was never going to warm up that much but the sun tried for a few hours this morning but there were a lot of people caught out by the cold and I was back up to 5/6 layers for 'mid season' temps (I sometimes am on 12 layers in the depths of Winter so today was not that cold!).



So I met the girls (who it was apparent had skied way too much yesterday afternoon and were knackered) and we headed straight up the mountain and onto the long magic carpet. To say it was firm was an understatement. I had one hope for the snow up there this morning and that was that the south facing long magic carpet might take some early heat and soften up.... well it did.... a TINY bit! Anyway we had a few good runs refreshing some of the things we worked on yesterday and then it was time for a warm up / drinks break at the Ouilllette and then we took a run on the Madelaine which was fairly firm still. Anyway the girls did very well so it was a good morning!

I headed down and did my periscope:

https://www.pscp.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1DXGyrWvQjkJM?autoplay&t=1

I headed home for lunch and Clare was over in Tignes having lunch with some friends so I got the house to myself for a couple of hours and dipped my toes in the water as I started my annual torture of doing my year end accounts / tax return for the French authorities - yikes I hate it but when it is finished each year I know the season is over and it is party time!

So in other news several members of the French National Ski Race Team are training (the technical team) on the Orange this week so if you want to see some really good racers and how they train then head up there and admire from the Marmottes lift... SERIOUSLY good skiers!

Also today was the 'monoski world champs' which is a joke and unoffficial competition that the Mountain Echo Magazine put on each year. Imagine 1980's one piece flouro with beers and BBQ (OK a chilly day for it) and some fun head to head racing on monoskis and you get the picture.

Finally the resort has released its final / virtually final as not many people will be here next week, numbers of visitors for the season..... so nearly 1,380,000 skier days have been recorded this season which is some 80,000 more than last Winter.... pretty healthy numbers.... I wonder what next season will bring!

This evening we are off down the valley as it is the end of season TDC Ski School curry night.... normally it is our mid season party but that never happened this year so it is doubling up as our end of season party instead. So off down there in a moment.... should be fun.

Tomorrow should bring snow and more cold temps but it will start to warm up slightly in the afternoon and continue that trend back up towards normal temps by the end of the week.

TTFN
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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!
I just got back from Tignes, had a great long weekend.

I'm a nervous skier so mainly stuck to blues and greens, focusing on carving and improving turn rhythm/shape. Stayed mostly up high and was impressed with the snow quality. I think that I improved a lot this week, bar my confidence wobble on Saturday/Sunday where it was slushy and mogully and I had a lot of falls. Heading down Santons for lunch seemed like a good idea at the time...

Had great fun on the runs coming down from Grand Prè, Borsat and Marmottes. Lovely quiet pistes with a small layer of fresh snow with hardpack underneath.

Favourite day was Tuesday as there was limited visibility earlier on and many of the runs were deserted. Fresh snow too!

For the last run of the trip I thought I would take the red Crocus run off Piste Henri down to Le Lac. I enjoyed the red then the run seemed to get very narrow/steep/icy. Cue noticing that the piste markers had changed to black and I was on Trolles. Guess that's what I get for not checking the piste map and instead hoping for the best! Shocked

Made it down in one piece (only one fall!) but I think it was a little beyond my skill level at the moment so not something I'm in a hurry to repeat. The scariest part was my fall on the section where it narrows and sliding towards the cliff edge. Fortunately still had my skis on and was able to dig them in. Grateful to the kind gentleman who stopped to check that I was okay.

Just before that run I had seen somebody being rescued by helicopter from the bordercross area underneath Grand Pre. So lucky it wasn't me...

Al in all was a great trip. Happy to have managed five days on the slopes with only two days of annual leave. Very Happy
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Nicer day

We had a really lovely evening last night and our colleague, it turns out, doesnt just live 'down the valley' in Seex (this side of Bourg) but back up the other side of the mountain towards the Col du Petit Saint Bernard.... anyway it was not only a heck of a drive but also heck of a view back towards Arc 1900 and the Aiguille Rouge! Anyway plenty of yummy curries were on offer with all the trimmings but we go the quantities of rice TOTALLY wrong.... I could you not there was enough rice to feed about 200 people. Alas a few beers and some good company it was a nice way to spend the evening.

On the way down we picked up a few colleagues in town and I noticed that it was cold enough that they were able to put the snow cannons on on the snow front - wow that it is first for me.... seeing them on in April!

So this morning we woke up to blue skies and cold temperatures again but with the sun it would likely warm up. Olivia made an early morning appearance again but was sent back to bed but anyway the day started early.... as it turned out I neednt have rushed (I had a few things that I needed to get done before work like put the car away) as I got the call that they were running late!

When we finally got going the girls did so very well and we did the whole of the green triangle (and a second on the Grand Pre) and they are starting to come parallel at the end of the turns so it is great to see!

The quality of the snow out there was amazing and it really felt like mid Winter snow - amazing. The temperatures hardly affected the snow quality but as temps rise tomorrow it could change back to Spring like snow again! Watch this space!



I popped home at lunchtime (taking my snowboard home from the office where it lives in the Winter as I dont think I will be needing it again this Winter) and had a myriad of jobs etc to get on with. Our cleaners arrived just as I got home so I was rather penned in for an hour but after that it was quiet as Clare headed to Rize Cafe with Olivia to have a drink with a friend and her son.

I cracked on with a few things including my Periscope:

https://www.pscp.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1dRKZAjVOMVxB?autoplay&t=26

Amongst a couple of minor pieces of local news the Adventure Film Festival is drawing to a close but that was not before there was a cool stunt performed in town yesterday evening to promote the films!



Also the French technical ski race team continue to train in town and also the road up to the Pont Saint Charles is now open so bit by bit things are opening up for the non Winter!

Tomorrow evening will be my last daily update for this Winter and also my last daily Periscope broadcast. Of course over the Summer months I will be doing a blog once a month updating on all the main things that have happened but I hope everyone has enjoyed another season of updates and info.... my target of getting to 1000000 page views is getting closer bit by bit.

Oh and calbris despite the odd incident I am glad you enjoyed your holiday.

TTFN
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Ps meant to post this video which summarises the fun that was had at the 'Step Up' charity day the other day: https://www.facebook.com/1130303713650017/videos/1985326374814409/
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@stephap, how did you get on?
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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.
Thats a wrap for another season




Well as I write the last of my daily updates for another season I cant quite believe that another Winter has slid by.... 11 years in Val. The Summer will be a busy one with lots on but hopefully some family time too! I will be writing a monthly update on here to give you all the latest info on what has been happening in Val so fear not you will get your fix. However I will not be doing a Periscope (not that I am planning anyway) broadcast.

So anyway back to today and it was back to business as normal as the sun was shining and the temps were much warmer than they had been the last few mornings... still below zero but not too far below. The lack of much power in the sun yesterday afternoon meant that the snow had not firmed up too much overnight which was welcome. Anyway I headed to the meeting point and once again they were running later but we got going pretty quickly. They have decided not to open the Bellevarde Express in the morning this morning but I dont know whether they will open it next week or not.

However we got going and the girls were pretty fresh this morning so I decided to ramp things up a little. A walk down the steps at the top of the Olympique then a ski down Verte and we were off. We fitted in a couple of laps on the Borsat lift / run and the snow could not have been better it truly was mid Winter like.... stunning. So a couple of laps on there and then a trip from the top of the Marmottes lift down the steep top section and once again down the Verte followed by a cheeky run through the fun run it was then time for hot chocolate break. I noticed at this point that the Borsat lift had developed a technical problem and had been shut down - it was not to open for the remainder of the day!

I overran a little after hot choc break and this was not helped by my poor decision to try crocodile valley... which I had not anticipated it being quite so firm down there - woops. It took a lot longer than planned and there was a couple of falls but hey they enjoyed the challenge!

So I had lunch with Clare at the top of the mountain as we were heading off for the SDPSC - more on that in a moment and fitted in my periscope:

https://www.pscp.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1OwxWAakvkQGQ?autoplay&t=9

So yes after lunch it was time for the TDC end of season annual fun competition with a random name that no-one really seems to know the origin off... the SDPSC (Super Duper Pooper Scooper Championships).... I know I have no idea where the name comes from as it has nothing to do with what the name might suggest. So my colleague Joe as the reigning champion had to organise the fun and games.... we had a couple of runs through the GS courses up in the stade and then a slalom run through stubbies up there and then that was followed by a chinese downhill from the top of the Grand Pre down to the bottom of the Fontaine Froide lift by whichever route one chose.... it was a rather run afternoon. I didnt win but I did win stack of the day as I went rather 'big' on the chinese downhill and hit a dropoff way to fast and double ejected.... I had to scramble to get one ski back on and hobbled across the finish line carrying my other ski.... I now have a sore coxic (sp?).... anyway it was a rather fun afternoon.

Not to much else is happening in town as we enter the final week of the season next week and the resort is getting very quiet now. I have my final lesson of the season tomorrow and then onto my French tax return arghhh. Clare and Olivias birthday next week along with my best mate coming out for a ski - it should be a fun 10 days or so!

Finally a quick welldone to endomans son on passing his BASI L1 today.... congrats!

And I think that is about all really.... another short and sweet update at this time of the year.

So take care and please keep tuning in once a month or so over the Summer and then I will be back for a daily writeup again from mid November onwards as we enter Winter 17/18!!!!

TTFN
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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
@Steve Angus, Many thanks for your reports this season. Have a great summer with lots of family time.
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You know it makes sense.
Thanks for the reports and help Steve, see you next year no doubt. Suspect it will be a little busier for you.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Steve Angus, is it that time already? Thanks for another season of great reports and hope you all enjoy your summer.
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I can't believe it's all over already. Thanks again for such a brilliant blog throughout the season Steve, it's my favourite read on Snowheads (closely followed by Chocksaway's great updates on Tignes!).

Glad your season went well, I hope all the Angus' have a fabulous and relaxing summer - and all the best for the new arrival. (Don't forget I said it's a boy Wink)

I will look forward to the monthly updates and start the countdown to 2017/18!!
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Fatntasic spring skiing in Val today. Great snow, warm sunshine and empty slopes. Belvarde face at 9.15 - perfect snow and saw no one else the whole way down. Looks like winter returns Tuesday night.
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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?
Have a great summer@Steve Angus, see you next winter!
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Thanks for all your great work @Steve Angus, and pass our thanks to Clare for her patience with Tilly and Charlotte, an exciting year for you ! See you next season Smile
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