Sunday, May 04, 2003

Easter in Chamonix

This Easter we spent a few restful days in Chamonix where we did some skiing and walking in the mountains. Most of the pistes were closed since Easter was quite late this year, and we are nearing the end of the skiing season in the Alps. But we did manage a day at the Grandes Montets, where the excellent weather allowed us to finally do the superb black piste Point de Vue, which runs from the Aiguille des Grandes Montets (3233 m) and back down to Lognan, all the time with a continuing and changing panorama of the Glacier d'Argentiere on your right hand side. Fantastic!

Mont Blanc summit (4810,40 m) from Aiguille du Midi

Then a couple of days before we went back to Bologna we had the good fortune to have yet another perfect weather day, which allowed us to ski the Vallé Blanche (with a guide) for the second time.

A not uneventful trip, however, since one of our group had some rather serious technical problems right from the start, and after rather a lot of toing and froing, our guide decided to call a rescue helicopter and have him airlifted out. As it turned out this was exactly the right thing to do, since the piste over the glacier at this time of the year is very dangerous indeed, due to the generally low levels of surface snow and the concurrent risk of encountering small and large crevasses.

The photos are all grabbed from a digital video I made during the trip (with a Canon MV550i), so the image quality is only moderate, but they still give quite a good idea of what our trip was like. We were five in all who completed the trip, myself, Patrizia, Sam and Mark from London, and our guide, Nicole.

Click on the image of the Vallé Blanche above to begin the photo series.