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Portes du Soleil - Avoriaz/Morzine/Les Gets/Chatel/Swiss Side etc - 20/21

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Still snowing at 1200m tonight, went up MC about 2/3 of the way at lunch today. Snow a little heavier than last few weeks but still great fun


http://youtube.com/v/Q665S5jQjxw
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Great tune Very Happy
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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?
Completely random choice Cool
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ESF have cottoned on now:
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Some heavy roof tops out there and tricky viz



Probably light sleet fell in the village but here at 1300m I reckon 40cm has fallen so far (driveway estimate)
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Looking great Sad
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@DJL, yep shame there are so few here to share with.

Met Chris who runs the Bar Bush and had a chat about local business, he was upbeat about a feb opening and says they are surviving on the government subsidies. A few places are doing take-away with music on the terrace, but now you have to actually stand on the snow / road to consume beverages.

Not as fun as it should be
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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 have to say the conditions last weekend made me forget about the general situation: snow, sun, mulled wine... I can see how sleet, wind, heavy snow would make one feel miserable.

Hopefully tomorrow's dump will give way to another sunny weekend. Keen to do the Mont Caly rando with the kids!
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@patrick!, miserable would be no skiing at all......but yeah despite the big snowfall last weekends conditions were better than today, while yesterday was very nice too. All change.
Looks like Friday afternoon / early Sat will be very good again.

That Mont Chery face is steep in my view....it's just relentless incline. Weird ratio for me is that if the conditions are good then I'll go max speed down something that took ages to climb up. Suppose it depends on a lot of factors, brought into sharper focus by not having lifts.
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Steep Mt Chery from Mt Caly? It's a nice hike without the snow, I was hoping to get the kids snowshoeing up while I carry their planks and boots. No way I can get them to climb the SW and then S face from the village - plus the little one would be unable to ski down.
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@patrick!, not as steep approaching from mont caly side, but the problem there is the car park is another popular starting spot on weekends, so the route up to the forest section was very tracked out. I found the best (untracked) snow was below the carpark.

Still snowing heavily at 1200m, heard a lot of blasting yesterday from Nyon / Chamossiere side
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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.
Level 4 tomorrow

https://meteofrance.com/meteo-montagne/alpes-du-nord/enneigement

Google translate

"Since Tuesday afternoon, snow has fallen in abundance. The instability of the snowpack is generalized.

Accidental trips: The preventive trips made this Friday were systematically positive. These are powdery-looking patches, present in all directions, with breaks of at least 40/50 cm (last snowfall), then washing away all the recent snow layer laid on the loose grains formed by the cold of early January. Even low-lying embankments start easily. The cracks spread very far as skiers pass. It should also be noted that below the altitude ridges, the wind has formed very large accumulations.

Spontaneous avalanches: With the return of the sun on Saturday morning, purges will spontaneously occur on the very steep slopes, near the rocks. Given the large quantities of snow that can be mobilized, a punctual departure could be the cause of a large avalanche. This risk decreases very markedly in the afternoon."
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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
We'll stick to the piste, or a path following a ridge... no appetite (as in: "no aptitude" tbh) for deep, untracked snow anyway Smile
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Best day of the season. Video on usual channel. We took it easy in the bowl.

Typical busy weekend, everyone out enjoying the sun.

Started snowing again, could see 15cm tomorrow
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Another good day....much quieter, our tracks almost covered in from yesterday.



Took the bus for the first time ever up to Chavannes 1500m, makes sense to not leave a car there and just ski down from Nauchets to the village after a little hike.
Was surprised to see this sign inside, saying the area is closed for skiing etc.....yet they are ferrying 50 people up every 15-20mins....all day, hundreds and hundreds of people doing exactly what the sign says is not allowed Puzzled

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Poster: A snowHead
The Swiss side was delightful today. Fresh tracks until you stopped, quiet and hero snow on the lovely big motorway pistes In Les Crosets. We were well aware how lucky we are to still get days like this with lift assistance. Stopped by Swiss border guards in Morgins, told them where we were from and where we were going, they waved us through. That’s good enough for me rules wise
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@Nelbert75, that’s interesting, good to hear. I remember you’ve already used the season pass on prodains / French side.

Aside from any moral issues crossing the border, does anyone know if the half price (July purchase) PdS pass is refundable if you never use it?

Assuming the French side doesn’t open I’d have to do at least 5-10 trips to Swiss side to get value, if a full refund is an option.

Must be nice to get on a lift though
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Polo I must admit I have had a fair few spins of the Prodains Express since Christmas, and two trips to Morgins, using my €500 euro early bird pass. have hiked arare way but often been on the prodains lift twice in a day without any issues It’s money already spent for me, and if things continue without the French side opening, I’ll still consider it decent value for money if I get a few more Swiss trips in. Especially given next weeks forecast
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@Nelbert75, sounds like it's worth it for you being morzine based. I'll try to find out whether mine is fully refundable if unused....if not I might as well use it for prodains / morgins as you said. Lifts eh? what a luxury that would be

Had a rare chance to hike with an old mate today trying out his new splitboard (Zero G in Cham still have limited stock it seems). Given all the recent avi danger we took a very mellow line up from Mont Caly to Mont Chery.
Snow is still good, getting too tracked out in busy places and a little heavier in the sun, but still very nice to be up there.



Somehow the last time I explored this side a few weeks ago I didn't go past Les Chevrelles restaurant....which to our amazement was serving food and drink all day on the terrace / snow.



Great views across to Pointe d'Uble and Pointe de Chalune....could see plently of lines over there in the real backcountry.....am building up to it.

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@polo, wow, I didn’t think anywhere was open! Is it just takeaway drinks etc. We used to love getting stuck there inside with the snow blizzarding outside and enjoying a shared tartiflette etc washed down with a pichet of red ..... that was walking up with the dog after skiing. Seems a lifetime away.
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There have been a few places open, eg Bellevue thurs-sat apres ski, but not many are keen to stand around on the snow in the cold / dark. Also several places doing take-away / delivery food in the evenings, eg Boomerang.
But Les Chevrelles is the first place I've seen doing food and drinks (and dessert) during the day. I've never been inside, looks nice....very welcoming owner. Amazing that hardly anyone was wearing a mask, felt like some surreal alternative utopia, all standing around outdoors enjoying the fresh air. You ordered on the terrace (no seating provided) and it arrived soon after....food was coming out in tinfoil trays and looked alright.
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Is there anybody out there? This thread is slipping off the front page, so here's a little bump from Hirmentaz.

Hiked up carrying the wife's skis because her touring gear was elsewhere....nevermind, it was a lovely day and we can all take inspiration from the little dude I snapped waiting patiently for his Dad at the top, after 400m vertical climb, proving anyone can do it.



Looking north towards Lac Leman / Luasanne


Good cover facing south at 1500m
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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!
@polo, love your photos.
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@Pamski, thx, am still in touch with your ex neighbour Tim ....he's very generous lending us his old/spare skis. Will get out on the slopes with him soon hopefully
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@polo, please pass on our best wishes to Tim. I am still in touch with his neighbour Zigi. You are lucky being able to be on the snow! We haven’t spent January in the UK for years, and we don’t like it very much!!
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Well, I guess I'm still here. 20,000 vertical meters of touring so far this year but tbh I'm not sure anyone is really interested. One of the best early seasons that I can remember. Now that the avalanche risk is reducing this week is promising, at least until Wednesday.
I have lots of photos, but ultimately one snowy ridgeline is much like another. A bit like head cam footage that doesn't get edited. Great for those involved but dull for the rest of us.
Let's hope Macron and co don't put and end to it this week...
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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.
Ps. None of that is aimed at you@polo, .
You're input is always appreciated, especially on the Wx thread
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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
@zzz, that's a lot of vertical.....no idea how many I've done....easily 20 outings, at about 400m each....so 80 million Very Happy

Get what you're saying about the photo's / vids but I enjoy all that side too. Looking like a significant amount of new snow coming down tonight and tomorrow....enjoy the last of the really cold stuff for about a week
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You know it makes sense.
Yes please don't stop posting - it makes us discover new routes and areas, and plan the next weekend!

Busy in Mont Caly this Saturday (late) morning - the girls had a nice warm takeaway (chocolate, crepe) while us boys headed up towards Mont Chery. Our current set up is that I carry my son's skis up and he snowshoes (he's still way to small for any available touring ski, although I might adapt a second hand ski to an old diamir binding I have lying around, and buy a skin by the meter). We never reached the top though, the weather was quickly changing, but we enjoyed a short downhill on our way to the Perrières lift for training.

We really need to give Hirmentaz (and Thollon) a try, for a change of scenery.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
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@zzz, most definitely interested. Not really motivated to post on SH as not a lot to contribute being stuck in London. Smile
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@Ozboy, noted
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We like photos and enjoyed polo’s video of his expedition at the CdCorbier.
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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?
@zzz, @polo, as did we, love the photos and all your reports, and sorry you are not there @Ozboy,
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yeah come on zzz start spilling the beans on some more Chablais hidden gems, I'll do the music.....tho I'm defecting to GM in the morning
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Has anyone got any info on unused season passes?
I have two adult and one child PDS season passes and I can't imagine (sadly for us) that they will be used.

I believe the refund was available until 18th December, any ideas on whether a credit note may be issued for next season or is that likely to be dependant on whether the lifts 'open' to the public at some point before the end of the season despite us not being able to get there??
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@bobhitch, it’s been hit and miss but I know some people have been given credits towards next season for non flash sale passes by emailing the main ticket office, however they have put the brakes on this until they know whether they will open at all.
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Some friends in the UK had had credit notes issued against 2 Flash Sale passes.
They can spend these on any SERMA product.
This was early Jan, so after the cut-off.
The cut-off incidentally, is non-enforceable in the case of non-provision of services.
If the service is not provided you are legally entitled to refund / credit irrespective of what date you apply for it.
I think it was used as a sales gimmick to encourage people to buy passes in the post-flash, but pre-season period.
If the lifts do open (unlikely), then refunds will be pro-rata based on the % of the season open ( against the published opening dates).
Where people have used their passes, say for the Prodains Express to rando up higher, then as far as I understand, eligibility for refunds is not so certain.
To SERMA's credit ( in terms of treating their staff properly), they made sure that all saisonnaire contracts were in place, so that they are all entitled to chomage partial (furlough). My friend who is park shaper says they all just work 1 day a week, and they still get paid at 75%.
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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!
Well, it’s hosing it down with rain and is forecast to continue for the foreseeable. Much of the snow pack is about to become pretty soggy and then, I would imagine, pretty solid. Perhaps it will consolidate the base!
Avalanche risk is 4 on all slopes and at all levels. A large land slip has closed the road to Thonon. A bit of a shame because the weather and snow has been fab this week. Snow to low levels at night and sun during the day. A couple of great days of touring, one around the Nyon/Chamossiere area where there was no one around (they were all on Mount Chery Toofy Grin ) and one a little more off the beaten track near Abondance.
I think skiing is off for the next few days, and after that, M Macron and his cohorts will decide.
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@WindOfChange, hope you are right about the discounted PdS passes, makes sense, I'm not going to use mine at all and see what happens. Tried emailing them but just got an automated response.

After the 50mm of rain thurs-sat below 1800m, there was 5-10cm fresh snow down to 1400m by Sunday morning, so made for a nice easy hike up Chavannes and then down under the Nauchet / rainbow.





Nothing close to the powder of previous weeks, but great fun to ride, easy to turn etc. Much quieter than previous weekends so had first tracks down even at midday. Skied all the way to the village but snow a lot crunchier lower down. Video on the usual channel.
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@polo, Update, they have not got a full refund back to their cc on the 2 flash passes ( not a credit note ).
One of Mrs WoCs good friends works in the Office for SERMA, and she thinks that they'll just end up refunding anyone who asks, and has not used their pass.
Personally I don't want a refund, I am happy to swap it for a 21-22 pass, as this means I do not to worry about the Flash sale for next year, and should be covered against price rises. So I mailed them along those lines, just saying I was happy to swap it for next year. Like you, just automated e-mail response at this point.
Les Gets must be in a micro climate as over this side its been peeingdown below 1650.
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