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Evasion Mont Blanc - Megeve/St Gervais/Combloux/Les Contamines - 20/21

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead

http://youtube.com/v/uqqOkwshu_Q
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Idris, stunning. We have walked not far from there in the summer, but there is a grandeur to the landscape in the snow. It looks perfect for skiing ... but obviously as a nature reserve there are never going to be lifts built.
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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?
j b wrote:
@Idris, stunning. We have walked not far from there in the summer, but there is a grandeur to the landscape in the snow. It looks perfect for skiing ... but obviously as a nature reserve there are never going to be lifts built.


It's a fair way from anywhere - When lifts are runing you can get into the lower valley with a bout 30min of skiiining from Contamines, on a route that isn't obvious.

Contamines is a fair distance, but it is way closer than Bourg St Maurice or Beafourtain, the road up to les Chapieux and Cormet de Rosland are both closed in winter.
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http://youtube.com/v/N4ul0BPAWN8
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
https://www.instagram.com/p/CMxjexJB7ea/
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Cote 2000 (Megeve) to Praz sur Arly


http://youtube.com/v/BhGYDMIJlFw
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
That must have been quite an interesting trek @Idris. However even getting out my IGN map of the area I couldn't work out the route you took.

It has been something I have occasionally pondered - whether it would be feasible to link Megeve and Praz-sur-Arly. I assume it must be something the powers that be have thought about, even if local politics has got in the way of any actual planning. On the map there are a couple of footpaths running down from the Rochebrune-Cote 2000 ridge into the intervening valley, and on the Praz side a small road; I don't know whether they could be the basis for pistes if there were a chairlift each side. The terrain on the Megeve side looks a bit steep in many places though, perhaps that is something to explore on a summer walk one day.
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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!
That looks amazing!

I suppose switch to Pre Rosset from the bottom of Cote 2000, then on to the refuge de la Croix Pierre (col de Véry), and finally via Mont de Vorès to reach les 3 coins?

Was it Friday? The snow cover has really suffered this week under 1500m even on North faces (not that it matters with lockdown now in place - no Spring skiing possible within the 6 miles range for me)
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Here is our route




j b wrote:
That must have been quite an interesting trek @Idris. However even getting out my IGN map of the area I couldn't work out the route you took.

It has been something I have occasionally pondered - whether it would be feasible to link Megeve and Praz-sur-Arly. I assume it must be something the powers that be have thought about, even if local politics has got in the way of any actual planning. On the map there are a couple of footpaths running down from the Rochebrune-Cote 2000 ridge into the intervening valley, and on the Praz side a small road; I don't know whether they could be the basis for pistes if there were a chairlift each side. The terrain on the Megeve side looks a bit steep in many places though, perhaps that is something to explore on a summer walk one day.


Many different ideas over the years - there is an old piste that conects Megeve to Praz. A direct back up the same way has always been stoped by land owners or envirmentalists - the nasty sort who don't live in the are and don't walk the mountains. The upper reagins where I skined across is a nature resrerve and there are loads of terrain traps, so you don't want no ski tourers back there getting stuck.

patrick! wrote:
Was it Friday? The snow cover has really suffered this week under 1500m even on North faces (not that it matters with lockdown now in place - no Spring skiing possible within the 6 miles range for me)


Thursday - yup the snow is almost gone now - I live at 1000m at the base of the Prarion and had to take my skis off 4 times to walk across the grass this morning.
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Thanks @Idris, seems you followed the ridge which explains some of your impressive views - but will have been hard work, more touring than skiing perhaps.

(And on looking at my map I had ignored a blue dashed line, assuming it was some sort of parish boundary, but checking the key it turns out to have been a ski touring itinery!)

I guess if the local landowner isn't interested, that rules out putting in ski lifts and piste connections. I imagine most of the ski areas in France are based on the established alpine grazing associated with the commune, which are unutilised in winter, and which readily get approval for the economic benefit. After which it might not be too hard to persuade the odd neighbouring landowner to join in the bonanza.

Anyway, your route got me thinking again about fantasy connection routes. That area north of Mont de Vores has a lot of potential - north facing with possible routes all above 1600m - but would require a minimum of three lifts.
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The possibility of a link between Megeve and the Espace Diamant has been discussed for many years and is feasible. But there didn't seem to be much enthusiasm for it over our side - we felt it would bring more Megeve skiers our way than vice versa, and the Espace Diamant was already quite big enough for most of us. More linked skiing, I think, than Megeve. The southern end of Idris's route is very close to pistes in Praz sur Arly, Notre Dame de Bellecombe and Les Saisies. I often walked up to the "Croix de Pierre" and the eponymous refuge from the Saisies side - but on foot in summer and autumn, not on skis. I do feel it's good that not every alpine valley features ski ironmongery. Megeve and Les Contamines are very close too - from the top of the lifts on that side of Les Contamines you look down into Megeve.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
pam w wrote:
we felt it would bring more Megeve skiers our way than vice versa, and the Espace Diamant was already quite big enough for most of us.

Difficult to say. I was surprised that a lot of the Megeve skiers didn't seem to make it as far as Cote 2000 - though that may change if a few of the drag lifts get replaced by chairs. I do admit to having a clicheed image of a "Megeve skier" as someone awkwardly snowploughing their way down a green slope, but wearing an outfit that made them look as if they had just come from the World Cup circuit.

Megeve to Les Contamines would be logical since they are on the same lift pass, however there is no way of skiing between them so it would have to be a two-way gondola/cable car. And would need those Rochebrune-Cote 2000 drag lifts replaced first.
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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
A little ski tour above Les Contamines


http://youtube.com/v/Q_PrD0kOOIU&feature=youtu.be
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.

http://youtube.com/v/PovmAOyKlfs
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
pam w wrote:
the Espace Diamant was already quite big enough for most of us.


Having spent a full week both in St Gervais and in the Espace Diamant in consecutive years, I would tend to agree.

We are definitely skiers who prefer to try new pistes than repeat runs, but the Espace Diamant was absolutely large enough for the full week. And ditto for the Megeve ski pass (by which I mean including La Giettaz and Les Contamines).

The slow lifts in both areas - and especially in the Espace Diamant - do probably make the areas seem bigger though, because you spend less time skiing and more on lifts. That's not really a criticism, just a fact.

If the two areas linked up but without any lift upgrades, it wouldn't be feasible to ski from (say) St Nicolas to Hauteluce and back in a single day.
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