Risk 3, maybe 3+ with wind transport continuing. We decided on our old fallback of the Col d’Aigleton. The south west side is reasonably sheltered and doesn’t get too much wind loading, even if the north-east side can be prone to avalanches. The weather station on the col was registering 60cm of fresh.
Ken over from the States picked me up at 8.15 sharp and we headed up to Prabert for our RDV with Anny. There was only one car in the carpark although another two soon arrived on the scene. No-one had been here yesterday and only two skiers had laid down tracks this morning.
The road only had about 5cm (at 1100m) and there was no base below 1300 (where we used to park before the road subsided). The snow got deeper as we headed up to the Venetier valley. Here the other two skiers seemed to have disappeared into thin air and we were left breaking the 600m vertical to the Col in 30-40cm of fresh. A quick discussion about conditions before the final slope, the wind was blowing from the north and forming slabs on the south side of the col. Things might be sketchy later.
A lot of snow transport at the summit and some evidence of slabs.
The initial slope was a bit crusty but it was nice to get out of the wind
but the snow got better and better
Back in the valley we refitted skins and climbed to the lacs des Venetiers. The powder was getting humid on south aspects.
It is pretty rare to get first tracks in the Venetiers!
We then plunged into the sea of clouds for the final “border cross”.
1400m of vert. Job done!
The Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KPcSw7cKddA