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How an aged retired guide gets around the mountain

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
So there we were, just the three of us having a break, keeping out of the chill wind at the Frejus Cafe taking in the peace and quiet and (usually they have house music blaring out) acknowledging how fortunate we were when all of a sudden we heard this engine.

Four days previous we heard a snow-mobile screaming up the Chemin only to find it an hour later stuck in deep snow, this time it was a big Polaris coming up with rat tracks instead of wheels. I soon realised who it was, he used to own Le Pi-mai 1985m (for those that know Serre Che) and even though he's sold the business, he and lady wife still live at Le Pi-Mai most of the year including the inter-season.

He leaves it at the parking at Pontillas in front of us and then uses it to get up the hill, though I'd not seen it with the rat tracks on!

He used to be a Mountain Guide and we often bump into him all through the year along with the dogs, and this was just another one of those occasions Laughing

He'd obviously decided to take his beast further up the hill and it was really impressive how it handled the snow, the ultimate toy, especially after seeing the snow-mobile stuck. Though I think he may have been bashing a track for the snow-mobiles (15 of them) who go out twice a day with clients up the Chemin.

I worked out roughly that it's circa $30k's worth of kit, he is a bit of a boy Laughing



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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Shame some muppet seems to have photobombed him wink
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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?
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 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
@MorningGory, very good
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@Weathercam,
So have you ordered yours yet? wink
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
@DB, thing is, I'm 90% sure you need to live/own a home up the hill in order to have a snow-mobile / Polaris, otherwise here would be like Sweden / USA with swarms of them.

Though have to say an Electric Fat-Bike could be more of a potential investment option as I don't think the same rules would apply, but you'd need someone to have bashed a path up a trail for you, and then find a damn good anchor point to lock it up whilst you ski-tour.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@Weathercam,
The last thing we need is loads of them or more snow mobiles-messing up the backcountry.
I'd have thought an electric fat-bike would be too dangerous on icy roads and pretty useless offroad in deeper snow.
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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!
@DB, the French are very very strict on any type of motorised vehicle accessing trails.

The Refuge Napoleon just below the Col d'Izoard used to run events in the evening where you'd be bussed up to where the road was closed and then you jump on a snowmobile and drive the 10km up to the Refuge, have dinner and then drive back down, so quite an experience, but the authorities stopped as it was considered bad for the environment.

Here they have a similar operation, where they go up to Le Pi-Mai (but it's closed now), they leave at 14:30 and then the evening excursion at 17:30.

And like the snowmobile commercial excursions, they have fatbike outings as well (led by a VTT guide), along with dog sledging, all using the bashed down trails up through the valley, there's no ice just crisp snow, though currently, it's wet and soggy as it's raining.

It's all part of other activities on offer apart from using the lifts!
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Suppose if you have access to a bashed trial then an electric fat bike is going to be less environmentally damaging that most other forms of transport.
Would be good if they provided bashed trails along the valley floor and secure anchor points for the bike. Can you pedal those things in touring boots though?
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
@DB, now these are electric and have just won an innovation award, French Company and are getting a lot of publicity.



https://www.moonbikes.co/

Wonder if I can blag one for a test Very Happy
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