After last week’s deep snow in the French Northern Alps the Foeh has blown in today and rain is expected at altitude tomorrow. So we don’t expect much snow to be left by Monday.
However not before we got in a few lift served turns, both on, and off the pistes of the 7 Laux ski area. There was 800 meters of lift served vertical and about 5-10cm of dense powder off piste with about 5cm having fallen above 1500 meters on Thursday night.
looks a bit leaky to me, they are having a fire sale though. The cantonal bankruptcy office are flogging a development where the developer went bust and a few (British) second home owners are threatening to sell up if the Isenau lift shuts because it’s where Ollie and Portia learnt to ski (that’s pretty much the flavour of the facebook group) and someone, absolutely anyone will do, should finance a new lift for them.
Meanwhile, Glacier 3000 opened today. There’s a reasonable snow cover and although it’s a bit thin around the main lift complex that’s more to do with wind which we’ve been watching stripping the snow from here. The lift guy was saying it will be open in the week which begs the question why we went today and queued (for a couple of minutes) with the freestylers while they exhaled smoke from their rollups at us.
You can get some idea of the snow on this photo, it’s the pre-aloes so it’s sub-2000m and there’s not much snow left from the earlier fall at that height. That’s the Jura on the horizon, no sign of snow but apparently the roads were interesting last weekend when people were caught without their winter tyres on.
This photo nicely illustrates the snowline at around 1500 meters
fresh snow fell earlier in the week. About 5cm @ 1500 meters, 10cm @ 2000m giving nice ski touring conditions but with some small slabs in place on north facing slopes - presumably formed by the snow transport last weekend under the influence of the foehn resting on a weak layer created during the cold nights preceding the foehn, but that’s a guess.
The zero isotherm has stayed above the 2000m mark with the exception of the border area with Italy. Briancon got its first snow of the season in town this morning. There is 50cm of fresh on the col d’Agnel at 2600 m so expect to see some ski touring activity over there.
There seems to be some snow down to 1800m in the Belledonne today. Otherwise
That’s a lot of snow at altitude now with some strong winds at the start of the weather system so expect some slabs to be in place.
Nice shots. The valley fog finally cleared out around here about 3pm revealing fresh snow… but only from around 1900-2000m and the cover is only really significant at 2300m. Which is a big change from a week ago when you could ski from 1500m. Some nice tours being done from Val Thorens (why are they not open this weekend like back in the old days), Col d’Agnel in the Hautes-Alpes and Galibier. Here is a video from the Grande Casse, nice line for this early in the season
Enough snow even below 2000m to be slightly problematic on foot in terms of route planning. Any south facing slope below 2500m is pretty clear now. Brilliant conditions on foot earlier in the week, probably the last non-winter work day this year for me I’d guess.