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Chamonix 2018/1019

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
How difficult is ENSA? Looking at videos the entry looks a tad tricky but the rest looks ok? Manageable for an intermediate LVL HP:er?
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I did this a few years back. Entry is def the biggest challenge, still not sure I'd recommend for an intermediate though?
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Frim Avalanche Academy
Stay safe.
“Very high avalanche risk in #Chamonix tomorrow. 4/5 and a very delicate snowpack. Please exercise caution. Slopes can be triggered even if you’re not on them ! Stay on low angle slopes or ski outside of the valley”
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Thanks for the heads up must be more snow expected than forecast
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@Wallski, no, just what has been forecast for the last couple of days.
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My office in les bossons this morning. Still coming down pretty hard and not due to stop til tomorrow night. Snow report yesterday said the new snow hadn't bonded very well to the existing snowpack so stay safe!
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Have friends in Les Houches reporting the same - I'm now thinking about a road trip for a few days from here in barren Serre Che maybe arriving Mon night and staying Tuesday night
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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!
Looking rather fine out my window Happy
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I’m heading to Chamonix on Wednesday for three days. Great that this top up has arrived just in time. I had half considered driving over to Courmayeur for a day but given the tunnel is the price of a day ticket and I’m not expecting their conditions to be any better than in the Chamonix valley I think I’ll stay relatively local.

As a side question, and I know it’s likely been done before, where is the best on mountain restaurant in the valley? I’ve not skied in Chamonix for about 10 years but back then both Brévent and Flegere were universally terrible. And pricey.
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bigtuboflard wrote:
As a side question, and I know it’s likely been done before, where is the best on mountain restaurant in the valley? I’ve not skied in Chamonix for about 10 years but back then both Brévent and Flegere were universally terrible. And pricey.


On Le Tour the Alpage de Balme on the mountain is good as are the Cafe Comptoir and Arrete Bugnette at the base of the Vallorcine Gondola. On Brevent/Flegere the best is probably Le Panoramic itself at the top of the summit Gondola. On Grand Montet head to the base again for the Marmotton or the Cremerie du Glacier. If heading to the latter research how to find it first and you might want to booknahead.
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Thanks @22 dropout! I’ll get those on the list.
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@bigtuboflard, not sure who is running the Panoramic these days, we’ve eaten there a few times summer and it was OK. Nothing else up B-F.

Taniere up Les Houches is cute and friendly. Alpage (Refuge?) des Balmes, Ecurie de Charamillon.

Defo need to book the Cremerie.
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Arrive Les Houches tomorrow night and also stay Tuesday.

Ironically a mate arrives tonight and he has a guide booked all week but was for ice climbing.

I'll be in deep do-do if I go with him though, as it is OH thinks that plans have been laid well before today's decision Very Happy

At least guide who I know well will be able to advise on a safe easy tour for us when I meet up with them Tues night for the Wed.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
under a new name wrote:
@bigtuboflard, not sure who is running the Panoramic these days, we’ve eaten there a few times summer and it was OK. Nothing else up B-F.

Taniere up Les Houches is cute and friendly. Alpage (Refuge?) des Balmes, Ecurie de Charamillon.

Defo need to book the Cremerie.

Thanks again. Can you download on the cable car up to the Panoramic in winter? Guessing you can but OH is a definite blue and easy red at most skier so doubt she’d want to do the run back to 2000.
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
bigtuboflard wrote:
under a new name wrote:
@bigtuboflard, not sure who is running the Panoramic these days, we’ve eaten there a few times summer and it was OK. Nothing else up B-F.

Taniere up Les Houches is cute and friendly. Alpage (Refuge?) des Balmes, Ecurie de Charamillon.

Defo need to book the Cremerie.

Thanks again. Can you download on the cable car up to the Panoramic in winter? Guessing you can but OH is a definite blue and easy red at most skier so doubt she’d want to do the run back to 2000.


Yes you can download. Sometimes that’s the only option and they won’t let you on at the bottom with skis if avi danger is high!
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 Poster: A snowHead
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@bigtuboflard, if it’s a blue sky day, the view are worth the trip.
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under a new name wrote:
@bigtuboflard, if it’s a blue sky day, the view are worth the trip.
yes I reckon so, it’s been a long time since I’ve been up there, but never eaten there. Looking forward to it.
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
About 40cms in town when we left this pm, sis in law reporting 70 in her garden 10 mins ago and another 24 hours to go ...
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@under a new name, yes been getting lots of images/vids sent via Social Media.

Just hope this road trip pays off.

Plus friends in Les Houches' dog is the daughter of one of ours and sister of the other if that makes sense and they go bonkers together.

They did say Les Houches was really good this morning, then snow was heavy and tracked by the end.

I have a few contacts up there and the hubby of where we are staying is a guide, so hopefully, I'll get a route(s) worked out.

Not knowing anything about any tours up there was looking at routes from Le Coupeau opposite Les Houches in the trees and maybe just above towards the Aiguillette des Houches but think that might be suspect up there?
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@Weathercam, I am not yet a regular tourer (soon to change when we move up there permanently Happy ) so not the best guy to ask.
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Good to see Chamonix valley floor finally looking white, instead of its normal grey.

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Hi there,
Good to here that the snow has arrived,
Just a few questions, i will be staying in Cham for 4 night the first week in feb, there is a group of 12.
We haven’t booked any ski hire or lift passes. We were thinking of just paying per day and maybe skiing each area or would you recommend skiing just one area for 3 days if so which one we will have a mix of all abilities.
Our hotel is near the office de tourisim. Is there a ski hire shop anyone could recommend? and that is close by,
Where is the best place to buy lift passes?
Thanks
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After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
I think you would be bored out of your pants if you ski the same area for 3 days. The individual ski areas are not that big. For mixed ability skiers I would recommend le houches and le tour. We took a low intermediate skier to grand montets and he struggled a little. Courmayeur is definitely worth a visit
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Looks like its raining in the valley, looking at the webcams?
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@staffsan, I think it’s mostly been snowing ...
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@under a new name, Thats great! Are you there now?
And, although far out, forecasts are still looking great (Cold and snowy) from 21-22 and onwards and as far as i understand they have been doing so consistently for the last couple of weeks or so!

http://www.meteociel.fr/tendances/27625/chamonix_mont_blanc.htm
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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.
@staffsan, no, but we live in Geneva (and have apartments in Cham).
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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
@under a new name, Nice. Your apartments dont happen to be needing a tenant or two for second half of march, no? Very Happy
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Just driven thro cham (14/1 @ 9pm) It was snowing.
I’ve stayed in @under a new name, apartments they are extremely nice totally unlike a normal cham apartment.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Grands Montets if fantastic... well, aside from one glaring issue this season but still plenty for an advanced skier.

I'll second Cafe Comptoir in Vallorcine.
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@jbob, you are too kind, Sir.

@staffsan, SHs rates...?
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@under a new name, "SHs rates"?

(<--- Swedish snowhead)
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@staffsan, Snowheads rates = a modest discount snowHead
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@under a new name, well then yes! Cool
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Back from my trip. Thanks to all for their recommendations. Snow was fine Thursday to Saturday and then did not stop falling Sunday which made for a fun day at Le Tour.

If you're in or around Argentiere, I would highly recommend the Boulangerie L'Al'Pain for breakfast pastries/croissants or a lunchtime snack. Also had a nice meal in Le Dahu.
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Back from a good trip to Chamonix and Les Houches

@under a new name, and we did do a nice tour.

More detail and pics here

https://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?p=3342191#3342191
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Sorry forgot to add found a crackin AirBnB in Les Houches, very flexible with dates etc

Big apartment great views, and only €60 for the whole apartment.

https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/4535428

330 Bellevarde Road, Les Houches, Rhone-Alpes 74310, France

The only issue is if it snows you need a 4x4 as the access road, about 1,500m is well over 20% and locals with snow tyres were having a real hard time in that period when it is just freezing so very slippery.

Once there walk back down is only ten mins.
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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!
For anyone interested in some of the standard touring destinations, here is a brief update.

Crochues-Berard was fine after the light snow last week, with the exit not much harder than usual and powder all the way down the "real" skiing. Significant snow since then so cover will be splendid now. Make your own decisions regarding avalanche risk on north facing slopes.

The skin across from the Bochard lift to the Rachasse Col is icy at the end requiring crampons or ski crampons.

There is a brand spanning new track all the way up to the Passon. Skin track all the way to about 25 feet below the top. An absolute kick turn frenzy of about 50 turns to the top in the gully! Somewhat taxing. There is good cover all the way down to the bushwhacking, where it all gets a bit Scottish.

People zooming all points on the Argentiere Glacier, the major cols having decent cover.
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Getting bus from Courmayer to Chamonix tomorrow looks like it arrives at the main train station, is it straight forward to get a bus from there to Argentiere ??
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Yep. No'2
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