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Serre Chevalier Snow Report 2017/2018-and useful links.

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Out around 10 this morning, and up to top of Yret, which was far less cold than I expected, mainly due to lack of wind up there, which is unusual. Cucumelle busy, but bypassed the usual coffee stop at PiMai, and headed to La Ferme at top of Frejus bubble for the boot faff instead. Decided to take Barres and Mea drag lifts . Pistes almost deserted and snow was excellent. Skied around Clot Gaulthier area for a while before excellent lunch at Echaillon. Returned to Monetier after lunch and a fast ski straight to the bottom to walk the dogs.
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Well trying not to outdo @Hells Bells, Toofy Grin

@KenX, picked me up around 08:50 and we arrived at Monetier to see the group of FreeRiders that were there yesterday - turned out if I understood correctly that they were a group of 24 lads and lasses who I think were aspiring Guides. Anyway a group of 24 can really trash the snow, so we made sure we were on the lift before them.

Going up Yret some very good skiers were all ready taking some great lines either side of the chair, but the sight that blew us away was this white hare who run up the whole way, then up and over the other side before running across the next snow field, he must have done 2km!

We did think about doing the Yret chair but opted for Montagnolle. Just as we were ducking under the rope there was an ESF instructor with a group so I was damned if I was going to let them have first tracks so @KenX and I made some sort of apologies as we skied through them to ski what could well have been my best ever descent in Serre Chevalier!

Ok if one is being hyper critical / fastidious, powder could have been lighter and deeper but considering it's more that two days old and not uber high in terms of altitude compared to some runs elsewhere it was pretty good.

This shot was about half way down.


We then had two or three ESI instructors on their own ripping down after us. The run out was interesting with two huge avalanches having come down, probably the reason that Yret was not open sooner, though I suspect that they were caused by controlled blasting.

We did a second run and a lot more had been down it but we still scored some nice intracked as you can see with a bit of canny route finding Cool


http://youtube.com/v/DjyXH1WFDT8

Going to have to work a little harder now to score untracked me thinks.
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@Weathercam, looks like you scored!! How steep is that line on average?
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@leggyblonde, 30-35% at the top before opening out to a more mellow 20-25%. I'll stick up my Strava track shortly.

https://www.strava.com/activities/1351828692 only recorded the first descent well but you can read the terrain map, 2.5km line of good skiing before the long run out.
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smiling at how your photo makes the run off yvret look so shallow. Weathercam - I can see you are heading off to Japan. Are you not going back to SC.
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@dan100, yes does look mellow, though Montagnolle is only steep at the very top.

Have to go back to UK next week to get flight to Japan then will be back in the valley end of the month.

So this was today's little excursion, one of our favourites, though we normally ski it in Spring snow and was not too sure about what condition it would be in and how many might have skied it as it was very tracked out at the top.

However by the time we arrived at the cut off point where people have to traverse to get to the lift the whole line below us was untracked.

Snow was cold but powder was extremely variable depending on which line you took; if you watch the vid carefully you will see and hear Toofy Grin


http://youtube.com/v/5btPOCKPn7w



And what goes down has to come up
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Pretty damn knockout today and has been a great five days.

Today was a big slack country tour off the back of the Col de Mea and down to the Vallon de Chambran and then traverse up the valley and then a tough climb back up to where we were yesterday.

Used the drone and captured some excellent footage as well as filming our tracks from yesterday.


http://youtube.com/v/P8ELOnnGVx0
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After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Great footage @Weathercam, bit weird skiing along with that thing buzzing behind though!
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awesome!

your Montagnolle footage has been making me very jealous as well - was out in Serre Che last week (2nd-6th) with loads of snow but no chance of getting down there, my absolute favourite run too

how easy/difficult is it to control the drone to get that footage - do you always have to keep it downhill of where you are?!
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@willh, still a big learning curve.

There is an "active track" feature where it should follow the object/ person selected as it does for a few seconds at the beginning of each ski sequence but then it dropped the skier and I had to take over and fly / film manually, so in effect I could ski down and get the drone out and film skiers coming down the hill.
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Just sat in Turin airport after a lovely weekend and my first meeting with some snow heads KenX, Hells Bells and Mr Hells Bells (Julian). Pistes in great condition. Plenty of snow for the season and more on its way.
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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.
@dan100, nice to meet and ski with you. Another 20-30cm up in Monet overnight, lovely morning, although pistes were a bit chopped up and claggy after lunch.
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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
Good to have you here Dan, nice conditions again today with about 20cm of fresh.....
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You know it makes sense.
Weathercam wrote:
@willh, still a big learning curve.

There is an "active track" feature where it should follow the object/ person selected as it does for a few seconds at the beginning of each ski sequence but then it dropped the skier and I had to take over and fly / film manually, so in effect I could ski down and get the drone out and film skiers coming down the hill.


Reading up on it, it seems like you'll have to fly it manually as the software won't let the drone lose height while in follow mode, alright for skinning up though!
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
So, we went out on Tuesday morning, knee deep powder on piste, cloudy but no wind. Poor visibility so we kept to the trees. Good skiing, but a binding malfunction made the day a little short. Wind got up overnight, and our front door rattled as it faces the Col du Lauteret. ON Wednesday morning the chairlift opposite the apartment had disappeared in the blizzard. So it was the day to stock up the food and the wine and walk the dogs. I also finished the tax return. This morning we headed out around 10am, only to find that although the piste linking Monetier to Villeneuve was open, the chairlift back was closed. Even though it may have been a bus home again we head over anyway to find the piste completely deserted. RESULT !! We stopped for hot chocolate at Pi Mai and we were the only customers. Skied around for a couple of hours, then lunch at Echaillon, and started to think about heading back. As we passed the Vallons chairlift, it had reopened, so we had the best of both worlds today, and skied back to the village. It was definitely an 'I Love Serre Chevalier' day. Happy
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 Poster: A snowHead
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Hells Bells wrote:
So, we went out on Tuesday morning, knee deep powder on piste, cloudy but no wind. Poor visibility so we kept to the trees. Good skiing, but a binding malfunction made the day a little short. Wind got up overnight, and our front door rattled as it faces the Col du Lauteret. ON Wednesday morning the chairlift opposite the apartment had disappeared in the blizzard. So it was the day to stock up the food and the wine and walk the dogs. I also finished the tax return. This morning we headed out around 10am, only to find that although the piste linking Monetier to Villeneuve was open, the chairlift back was closed. Even though it may have been a bus home again we head over anyway to find the piste completely deserted. RESULT !! We stopped for hot chocolate at Pi Mai and we were the only customers. Skied around for a couple of hours, then lunch at Echaillon, and started to think about heading back. As we passed the Vallons chairlift, it had reopened, so we had the best of both worlds today, and skied back to the village. It was definitely an 'I Love Serre Chevalier' day. Happy


Thanks Hells Bells, 2 days to go, I arrive on Saturday and first day on the slopes Sunday.
Any local input on the latest forecast please?
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From the shop floor:

Untitled

Hopefully we get the forecast 30cm Very Happy
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
5cm in around 20 mins here!
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It's been dumping up in Monetier since about 2pm. The fence has vanished again. At least 15cm on the car after we came back from our dog walk which was clear when we left. @KenX, it looks like way more than 30cm right now, but we'll see. Happy
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@Hells Bells, we've got about 25cm so far and still hoofing down, Lynn's out trying to find Cody..............
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@KenX, Laughing . Hope he's back soon.
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@Hells Bells, Cody's back, Lynn's still out there! Shall I phone her? Very Happy
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Laughing Laughing I was going to suggest we brought Bentley and Lola down to flush him out.
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@Hells Bells, Laughing
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KenX wrote:
@Hells Bells, we've got about 25cm so far and still hoofing down, Lynn's out trying to find Cody..............


Sounds familiar
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@dan100, all good, she's come home now Laughing
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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.
Looking for a bit of advice or tips on driving from Turin airport to Briancon. Google maps saying approximately 1 hour 40 mins. We need to let the owner of our apartment know our e.t.a. It's
a Saturday, so transfer day. Will this make much of a difference? Any recommendations on the best route to take to avoid bottlenecks etc. Flights due to land at approx. 16.10. We have driven from Grenoble to Briancon before via Col du Lautaret but never from Turin. Was hoping to make it to Briancon before shops shut to collect a few provisions. Is this realistic or would we better stopping off enroute. Thanks in advance for help, advice and recommendations.
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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
@wishfulthinker, it is nothing like travelling from Geneva to Tarentaise and there are no real massive traffic jams and probably less than you would experience around Grenoble. Which Saturday are you arriving? If it is half term, the Col du Montgenevre may be a bit busier than normal as traffic will join from Frejus tunnel. Route from airport is sometimes busy as far as Rivoli where the ring road joins the autostrada. There's only really one route. Google Maps shows the exits you need (with photos), Autostrada as far as Oulx Circ NE, then Claviere, Montgenevre, Briancon. You should be fine to get provisions in Briancon as they don't close until 8pm. Casino Géant will be the nearest to your route. Car Hire will be your biggest hold up I expect. Get someone to go and sort car while the rest of you wait for luggage, although offloading is usually pretty rapid.
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You know it makes sense.
@Hells Bells, That's great, thanks for the info. It is half term when we travel.
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i travelled on friday night weekend before last and it took about the time estimated. Nice to have a sat nav if you have a portable one just to make sure you have the right turnings on to the autostrada. took me about 70 minutes from landing to clear the airport mainly due to the hire car checkin
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Ken/Helen you need to step up to the mark on weather reporting as Weathercam is away Very Happy Very Happy Not back now until 1st April. Hope the snow keeps piling up. It would be nice for the kids to see all the slopes open.
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@dan100, Toofy Grin

However think OH is updating the weather page with info supplied by KenX

Tis truly feckin bonkers here - resort shut this afternoon.

I'm quite stressed as have been trying to sort guiding out and it's very complicated given the weather and different abilities of groups, and it's very busy, that said have now secured one of the top guides in Japan, just hope we get a bit of a break in the weather.

This is mainly for Ken to instigate FOMO Smile

Cveto brings to Hokkaido Ski Club qualifications and experience that are extremely rare to find. He has worked as a professional mountain guide since 1999 and is accredited by both UIAGM International Federation of Mountain Guides and JFMGA – the Japanese Mountain Guide Association, which he is the first and only non-Japanese national to have been accredited. Cveto has now lived in Japan for 26 years, arriving after travelling by bicycle across China and Tibet. Originally from Bled, Slovenia, he was a member of the Slovenian national cross country for 9 years and seven-time winner of the national cross-country competition.
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@dan100, too busy skiing!! There are slopes open right now that I haven't seen open in a long time. 97% open this morning. Yesterday and Saturday afternoon were very warm, damp and windy. You could see the snow disappearing in our garden .Top lifts were closed, so we gave skiing a miss. Headed off across to Chantemerle this morning. Lovely and sunny this morning but a bit colder, and quite windy at top of Yret, and Cucumelle. Snow was OK, but off-piste wind-blown high up, and lumpy and hard where it had frozen overnight below. Pistes in good nick, but harder than recently, particularly Lacets down to the shitty blue chair (Frejus). Met up with Lynn and KenX at Serre Ratier and headed over to Prorel and down to Briancon Midstation. Lovely snow on Briancon side where it had softened in the sun, and almost spring snow down to the midstation. Returned via gondola and new Rocher Blanc chair to Serre Ratier. The red (Petit Alp?) back to the bottom of Prorel chair was horrid hard moguls. Worst conditions I have skied in 3 weeks. My knees were objecting after that so downloaded in Ratier gondola and had a beer at the Royale before bussing it home. The driver's banter made up for the 2€ bus fare we now have to pay. Our final day tomorrow.
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Hope they stay open till April. Hoping to show th kids a bit more and they can ski though they will be having. A heavy burst of lessons again.
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After 30cm of fresh on Saturday, high winds and rain made a mess of that, but we've had a couple of cracking blue sky days since and the pistes are in fantastic condition Smile
Hoping to drop off the back side of Serre Che tomorrow to explore the S-facing off-piste down to the Partias valley and then there's another 30cm due on Friday, hopefully colder this time and less wind!
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One for @KenX, Toofy Grin



Have fun tomorrow, will be thinking of you as we go cat skiing up a disused / closed down resort Laughing

Where's FNC convening ?
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@Weathercam, #fluffy Very Happy
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After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Yet another sunny day in paradise! Arranged to meet with Greg to ski down into the Partias valley, had a wee ski round the perfect pistes to warm up, then dropped in off the Col de la Ricelle, almost spring like in the sun!

IMG_2679

Down at the lake we donned skins and hiked up the Col de la Trancoulette, Greg near the top:

IMG_2686

Once there, we decided to do something I've been wanting to ski ever since I've been here, the descent down the Trancoulette valley to our our front door!

Nice view!

IMG_2684

Skiing through the summer village of Ratière on the way down:

IMG_2687

And after a nice cup of tea at home, LynnX kindly drove us back to Chantemerle to collect our cars...........
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Click on link to watch Relive video of the climb and descent:

<blockquote><h4>Relive 'Lunch Activity'</h4></blockquote>
<script></script>
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@KenX, mission accomplished, well done!

Shame I could not have been with you but other things to do Toofy Grin
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