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The view from............ Val d'Isere and the Espace Killy

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi Steve, any suggestions for pistes/areas to go for AM PM or more importantly where to avoid early and late.

Im keen to tackle Face this year seems to be best mid morning from what I've read?

Thanks
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
^ yes to mid-morning!
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
therock - hi and welcome to SH's. Firstly yes the Face is always best (even in mid Winter) doing sometime mid morning - after a solid warm up and if there is any ice about it will have hopefully softened up or vice - a - versa if its soft it will not be too churned up. So I always suggest up Olympic a warm up on the OK Orange, back up the Funi and then hit it about 10am / 10.30am something like that!

But in general for this time of the year am / pm considerations... its partly dependent on the weather and freezing level but North facing slopes you'll find better snow (take a cheap compass to get a feel (its the direction Mont Blanc is away from Val direction more or less) however start low and work your way higher and finishing in the afternoon up on the Val glacier and you can't really go wrong! And DONT DONT bother skiing down into town really later in the afternoon on any of the slopes as its pretty painful for much of this stage of the year! Hope that helps!

A nice downtime

The morning was the usual routine with the kids (it was Olivias last day at school before her holidays started) and then I headed up to the meeting point. However it was a VERY unusual start to the day in one particular way - MIST, heavy and thick MIST... so very rare to see that in Val - well at resort level anyway)


...and this was after it had cleared up a little!

Anyway I only had young Sam this am - one of the kids was having a day off skiing (a sensible idea I thought of the parents!) and the other girl decided she wanted a ski with her friends.

So off we went and with a 10.30 rendezvous at the Signal the only option was to head up Solaise and we had a fund ski about... eventually we dropped over the top into the Fornet and there was actually some powder about and until the sun and heat and humidity got to it the snow was light powder! Brilliant fun to be had.

After hot choc stop we did some more laps before heading back to town via the bus from Fornet! However the pick up from the parents didnt go according to plan as they got lost coming back so ended up being 30 mins late... oh well at least by now the sun was shining and the mist / clouds had been burnt away more or less!

I treated myself to lunch in town before heading home for a few hours of totally 'me time' - basically vegging out... before heading back into town to run a few errands and then collecting the kids!

And that is that for today!

So I will be doing my dailies on here and social media for another week before heading off to Val Thorens for the EoSB - in fact with some of Clares family arriving next Friday night probably next Thursday will be my last update - we shall see.

TTFN



The CATEX station at the top of the Pyramides lift in the Fornet for protecting the pistes that lead from this lift and the lift itself!
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Thanks, that is useful.

Been lurking on here for a while now just don't post very often.

My watch has a compass app on it, always wondered what I would use it for!
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
therock - no problems - enjoy

Glorious

With no kids to get ready for school or anything it was an easy start to the day...

There was also no fog but we had had a serious freeze overnight so it was set up for a classic Spring skiing day.

Anyway I headed to the meeting point and today it was just young S and being his last day we headed to Tignes and did all the things he loves doing - jumps, the skier cross, crocodile alley and all the usuals although we did have to wait a little while as lots of the slopes just didnt soften up quickly enough! The only downside was that one of the little booters at the side of the Edelweiss piste sent him flying and he landed badly on his thumb giving it a real whack! Anyway apart from a sprain he'll be OK! We also took hot choc break at The Corner in Tignes VC and I was rather naughty as I treated myself to a bacon sandwich!!! Yummy!!!! So nice!

I sat in the sun at lunch before meeting a regular client of mine in the pm for a session... I always give him a session or 2 a few times a season and today was another one of those days... it was a hot afternoon therefore I headed to the Fornet and up onto the glacier working on a few things... we decided to tweak posture as he was doing the classic of opening up the ankle and straightening the back therefore his weight was dropping back... that and a few other tweaks and it was good afternoon I thought!

At home Clare was pulling her hair out with the kids - a little bit of cabin fever I think - end of holiday fatigue meant not too much entertaining was going on - oh dear! So after bath time etc I treated Clare and I to a treat - the yummy steaks I picked up yesterday - coupled with some wedges and washed down with a beer - perfect Saturday evening!

So tomorrow am I have a morning off - not had one of those for ages and then teaching in the pm! More sun forecast for tomorrow!

TTFN



Got asked to carry this up Tommeuse to the top by the liftie this am... so these are the controllers they use for the lifts... well most of the lifts have these plug in remote controls ... top (lh side as we look) dial is the on off button for the lift, emergency stop button in red in the middle then there are three speed setting (PV = petit vitesse, MV = moyen (middle) vitesse (speed) and GV = grand vitesse... so normally sits on GV but if liftie senses someone about to have an issue then drops to MV and if problem and person needs more time then drops to PV etc).
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Read the conditions

No such thing as a lie in when you have the chance when there are young kids in the house, they say... well thats what it was like this am - 0600 and it was up and about - arghh!

Anyway not all was lost as we enjoyed a family breakfast of some pastries - yummy.

Clare then took the kids swimming and I caught up with some jobs that needed doing at home!

To be honest after a hard freeze last night (apparently -15 up the top of the Bellevarde overnight!!!!) it was cold out there in the morning until the sun got going! So it was nice to be at home!

At lunchtime I got going and it was back with 'R' and we work on some edge control work which was pretty apt in those conditions - basically anything west facing was still bullet proof and north facing not that much better either! In fact there was quite a lot of whacks to people and on a day like today break and fractures can be quite common and we saw the heli in the snowpark on the way back home at 4pm!!!!

After some work in the stade we headed over to do some laps on the Trolles piste into Val Claret... some really good work was being developed but boy was Trolles slick even in the afternoon and we witnessed one person (fell at slow speed) who slide the WHOLE length of both top and bottom pitches of the bottom half of the trolles... pride before a fall as 'R' did something similar later in the lesson too! Whoops a really 'whipper' day!

Meanwhile at the other end of the spectrum there were some east facing slopes that had taken the heat all day and a small slide even came down across Piste L today - I am led to believe it WAS open at the time but it was small but just indicates whats happening out there currently!

I meant to say that a couple of days ago as part of the Belgium National Champs there was a skier x / boarder x course PROPERLY set up on that track coming down from the top of the Grand Pre lift - managed to get a run on the course just after it was reopened - pretty fun!

Anyway back to today... after skiing I headed into town for a quick drink in the sun with some old friends of ours who have now moved to Morzine but it was nice catching up with them for an hour or so... nice to see you chaps... see you around this week!

Finally... SnowTrax sent me a photo yesterday to upload - challenge for 'Wheres Wally (Where is this)' for today! Its quite tricky but lets see if anyone gets it!

Anyway TTFN


So quiet in the resort today... this was Val Park about 2pm!!! Incredible NO-ONE hitting the jumps....


... but someone must have as the chopper was in attendance to get an injured person out of there by 1545 or so!


So where is this?

Anyway folks TTFN
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
We did piste L late afternoon yesterday and there were numerous wet slides, some getting to the piste. None were too serious.
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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!
Quick reminder, it’s the Step Up today.

A mahoosive kicker, 100+ alcohol fuelled seasonaires, what could possibly go wrong?

It starts at 11am under the Thomeusses lift. Food, booze and a great atmosphere. One of the resorts best fun days.
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A nice new team

Rather hectic start to the day as Olivia needed to get to the the Village for her ski lesson and kids club and I was taking Ben as well so it was all go, go, go! Anyway we got all our ducks lined up and made it out on time into the glorious sunshine. Again like other days of recent it had been a cold night overnight so it was nice that the sun was getting going but it was still a chilly start to the day!

Anyway with the kids in place I was at our meeting point to meet a new team whom I have never skied with before and we were off!

I had 4 chirpy kids between the ages of 8 - 10 and all solid green and easy blue standard of skiers. We had a fun morning and being the first day I was mostly sussing them out and allowing them to find their feet whilst working on some technique. A hot choc at the Bellevarde restaurant was a necessity and then we were off again!

Apart from the parents picking the kids up late it all went according to plan!

I took lunch at home and did some jobs before having to head into town to run a few errands! It was not until 1730 that I got home and was able to start the evening usuals of bath and bed time routine.

Of course Clare and I had to catch up on last nights 'Line of Duty' and here we are once again!

A special mention must go out to Tiger and the golf last night - awesome to see - so happy for him!

On the flip side I have been seeing the horrible developments going on in Paris this evening - horrible to be in a country where such horrors are development and so much national sadness can already be felt!

On another note there was the meeting of the commercial owners of shops etc in town today... amongst other interesting things talked about was the state of pavements around town (I was only moaning about that the other week wasnt I!) and there was also the realisation that French resorts such as Val need to do a lot more to attract and retain visitors against increasing competition from places such as Austria etc - hmmm yes quite!

So that is it for today!



P.S. This coming Thursday or Friday (not sure exactly yet) will be the last update for this season and I will be back for monthly updates as usual over the Summer!
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Getting the stinker out the way

First thing to say.... no entries for the 'where is this' competition above?

Anyway I opened the curtains this morning (it was tricky getting out of bed this morning!) with a little apprehension BUT to my happy surprise it was NOT too bad out there (I was expecting rain and thick clouds!).

The same set up as yesterday morning with the kids and we were off. I had the same team as yesterday and they were a little slow getting there but we got going non the less. We did some technical work as we made our way over towards Tignes and Val Claret. I enjoyed my ski down to The Corner for a cuppa (they only charge €1 for a cup of tea (bargain) and an amazing stacked hot choc with marshmallows etc for kids is only €3 too!)) and then on the way back Crocodile Alley as well as a run through the snow park were the order of the day!

After the lesson I had a short ski back home and then got on top of some paperwork before collecting Ben and then embarking on the evenings chores!

The weather tomorrow should improve somewhat and there is not likely to be much in the way of a freeze for the next week or so especially down here in town so I am predicting that the slopes will recede quite dramatically in the next wee while before we get towards the end of April! The slopes up high should remain really good for a while longer and we will get some decent Spring slopes off piste opening up nicely!

TTFN


Now that could be an easy 'where is this' question.... either way you can see some of the slopes even at altitude are getting thin in places with the effects of the sun!


Looked quite promising first thing this morning!!!!
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Yesterday's where is, Borsat Chair.
Today = Tignes side from Top of Toviere where it splits, Piste H and the sort of start of trolles but it's still very blue.
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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.
Tuesday is looking down at the start of Henri, the blue loop that avoids the red Crocus section.

The previous one is really bugging me. I think it's looking West from Pissaillas, but couldn't put money on it. The lift would be Cascade.
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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
Quote:

First thing to say.... no entries for the 'where is this' competition above?


on the Borsat chair?
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
endoman - no and no... sorry!
bar shaker - no and no again.... sorry
franga - again no.

ANY MORE GUESSES?

Well I've seen it all now!


Spot the skier on the mountainside in the distance in the middle! Quite a walk for those 50 turns!


Should be super easy... is this photo taken going TO or FROM the fornet?


YES you are not seeing things that IS someone dressed in a kilt, wearing ski boots and carrying bagpipes!!!!

So today was again a day of two halves. Having dropped Ben at creche I was up to the meeting point in the glorious sun. We had had an OK (not too hard) freeze but I thought that getting up to the fornet would get the best snow... with the kids early and raring to go we headed up the Solaise side and did some runs up there before taking the up and over (think the unofficial quiz above might have been given away there!) towards the Fornet. I decided to gamble on the kids being able to ride the Col poma and after a couple of false starts they all finally made it up (phew). The kids nailed their first descent of the Moraine piste and to be honest the slopes was in AMAZING condition... it was JUST like mid winter snow on it - truly brilliant and as usual no-one was on it! Brilliant!

A very quick hot choc break before making our way back to town via the bus from Fornet and then dropping the kids off atop the Bellevarde and that allowed me to ski home. I then once again had a chilled afternoon and got some jobs done before collecting the kids and undertaking the evenings duties!

Tomorrow will be a similar today but in the evening Clares brother and eldest son arrive to stay with us for a few days... so should be able to get my blog fitted in at some point.

TTFN
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
That's heading to Le Fornet. Piste is flatter on that side, and the slope is running from right to left.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Quote:

P.S. This coming Thursday or Friday (not sure exactly yet) will be the last update for this season and I will be back for monthly updates as usual over the Summer!


Before your daily updates end. Just wanted to say a big thanks for another season of informative, interesting and entertaining posts. Not forgetting the excellent pics. I've enjoyed even more than usual, as for the first time in over 30 years I had to miss skiing. So your thread made it much easier to imagine being out there in the mountains and my favourite EK places in particular.
Have a great EOSB and summer. snowHead
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LAST ONE

Firstly thanks PeakyB for your kind words. In the season that I hit my 1,000,000 page view I can't believe it has been another season (whats that 8 now or something) that this thread keeps going - long may it continue!

Anyway thelem you are of course correct - I like to think that that was an easy one for you all!

However back to the 'where is this' from the last few days and with no more entries then here are the answers.

Sunday 15th is looking south towards the Arcelle lift.
Tuesday 16th - well that is a tricky on in those weather conditions but it is in actual fact looking BACK up towards the top of the Bellevarde from where the Diebold and 3J pistes split... so the wooden fence (snow trap) on the right is between the Verte and Diebold pistes.... tricky eh!

So back to today...

After getting the kids into bed slightly early last night as they were knackered they rewarded us about being slightly earlier out of bed this am so we were all up on a 'schoolday' just after 6! Arghhh!

Anyway it meant we had plenty of time to get the normal things sorted and get the kids to creche etc!

My team arrived on time and with a strong Foehn wind blowing and the clouds spilling over from Italy it was definitely a day to go towards Tignes (unless you wanted to get the little bit of fresh powder up the top of the Val glacier and battle the winds - no thanks with the kids!

So we headed all the way over to Tignes and did the skier cross course but there was hundreds of Club des Sports kids from Tignes and Val and umpteen normal ski school groups about so the lift queue was huge! Anyway we got one lap in - it was a lot of fun! The kids loved it!

A yummy drink followed for hot choc break at The Corner and then it was time to head back towards Val and we just had enough time to fit in a descent of the Combe Martin so the kids were thrilled with their first black slope (OK its short and pretty easy but it builds positivity!)

Lunch was taken with SnowTrax and 'K' in their apartment - some yummies from Chevallot... it was nice just to sit down and chat rather than being swamped with kids and or work or 'life' duties for an hour or two! Lets hope they manage to fine something to buy in Val so they can move here permanently! Yippee!

I was on kid collection duty so it was all go, go, go for an hour or two and then getting them through bath time and into bed! We are just awaiting the arrival of Clares brother and his 6 year old son who are here for a few days.

One thing to note from today that is something that I have been meaning to say for ages - that relates to rental kit... I notice that when people rent ski kit that the quality varies so much! One of the problems in renting 'cheap' kit is for example that the skis dont clip together very well. That is happening with the kids I am teaching in the morning this week... they are quite young but their skis barely clip together as they brakes are old and too malleable now... it is annoying as you spend the whole time trying to get their skis to clip together and then as soon as you get to the gondola doors they have scissored apart again - arghhh! So if the quality of rental skis was always as good as Snowberry's then that would not likely to happen.... sorry mini rant over!

AND THAT IS THE END FOR UPDATES FOR THIS YEAR.... thanks everyone for dutifully tuning in to these dailies and I will not only be back again next season for more updates BUT I will also be back monthly for updates through the 'off' season to tell you latest info etc. For those on the EoSB I will see you next week - safe journey out. For everyone else - enjoy the Summer!

TTFN



Forbodding clouds rolling across from Italy towards the Fornet!
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Thanks for all the updates Steve - have enjoyed them hugely! Have a great time at the EOSB
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Thanks Steve. We shall be out next March all being well.
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@Steve Angus, thanks so much for keeping this going for so long- it has sort of become part of my daily routine- a bit like listening to the Archers!

Have a good rest over the summer, we’ll look forward to catching up next season. Will be in touch. Love to Clare and the kids.
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Thanks for all the updates Steve. Didn't manage to get there this year but your updates make it come alive. Have a great summer.
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Thanks Steve, having finally made it to Espace Killy this year, after reading your updates it really has helped with bearings etc. Great ski area and we will be back!
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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!
Thanks one and all (especially the newbies out there such as Subseaeng (Welcome to SH's)..... ); I have made it to Val Thorens for the EoSB... may the fun and games start! See everyone here on this thread next month for a monthly update as to what is happening in Val d....
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Have loved reading your thread again this season. Thanks! Just back a few hours ago from 7 days skiing in Espace Killy. Was fantastic as always. Roll on next season.
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@Steve Angus, always a pleasure to read Steve, especially for us not in the Alps!! Are you working the cricket world cup at all??
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@Steve Angus, thanks for another season of great updates and photos, it's the most enjoyable read on Snowheads. Hopefully I will make it back to the EK next season. Enjoy the Eosb!!
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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.
I second that! snowHead
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