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TR: Grand Van, Belledonne
Posted: 23 December 2011 09:01 PM  
Total Posts:  2234
Joined  2003-10-24

Today we toured to the Vans in the Belledonne range above Charmousse. The plan was that over the last 48 hours the snow below 1500m has become unskiable and it is not that much better higher up. So with the Vans we have a route that is heavily traffiked - breaking up the crust and south-east facing so a chance of finding spring snow without it being complete mush.

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The bottom of the (closed) Casserouse piste doesn’t look wonderful, this is the Olympic Men’s downhill. They need to get a lawnmower down here during the summer. But it was skiable at least.

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The Eulier didn’t look bad and quite a few people had skied it but when we passed the snow seemed mushy.

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A few people had tried the Sorbier, we counted 6 in total. The snow looked ok in the sun but the slope rapidly descends into wind scoured shade at this time of year.

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At the summit JC had a nice cuppa tea with the Grandes Rousses as the backdrop.

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While we admired some other views.

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A fly past of Alpine Chuffs.

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and the rescue helicopter.

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Then time to ski down, here Guy is tackling the spring crud.

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Anny in the last couloir above the Col de Lessines before the climb back to the Chamrousse Cross.

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and a look back to the Vans bowl.

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btw this is what les Deux Alpes looks like today.

Posted: 25 December 2011 08:38 PM   [ # 1 ]  
Total Posts:  24
Joined  2004-08-22

Nice pics David, is that camera an early Christmas present?....

Posted: 26 December 2011 06:08 PM   [ # 2 ]  
Total Posts:  2234
Joined  2003-10-24
PaulC - 25 December 2011 08:38 PM

Nice pics David, is that camera an early Christmas present?....

replacement for last year’s Christmas present which broke when I dropped it. New camera is a Panasonic ZX3 which I got half price (in Switzerland of all places!) and it replaced a Panasonic FP1. To some extent I liked the FP1 better despite less features. The rear screen is broken and it seems quite complicated to fit a replacement.