Thursday, 31 January 2013

St Orson's Fair

We went to Aosta today (in Italy through the Mont Blanc tunnel) to the St. Orson's Fair (no I don't know what he did).  There were 17 of us so rather a big party.   Angie had arranged lunch for us all otherwise I am sure we would all have gone hungry.   There were lots of stalls, some food stuffs, sausages, cheeses, honey, but mostly wood carvings.  It was fun but I feel that I do not want to see another wood carving for some time.  I was looking for a salad bowl but they were all the wrong size, too shallow, too ornate, too expensive ..... so I bought some cheese and some honey.   Interestingly. there was a lot more snow the French side of Mont Blanc than the Italian.   MB is the divide, and often one country gets the snow and the other is bare. 

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Accompanied skiing

I was looking after the relaxed group and managed to lose 4 people on the first run!
i went up the Mont Joux chair thinking I may have missed them but they were not there so I skied down and met them at the bottom.   Two had crashed and one had had huge problems in getting her skis back on. Fortunately, everyone was OK and we regrouped and had a lovely morning.  We had coffee at the Gouet where we met Bill who had lost his intermediate group and his mobile phone.  One of our party rang his phone and it was answered by a French man but the phone kept cutting out.  Eventually Bill decided that it was probably gone for good but when we got outside there was the Frenchman holding his phone!   He hadn't realised where we were but was trying to contact us.  How nice was that!  He was the man who looked after the skis at the Untitled Restaurant at the top of the Mont D'Arbois lift.  So that was a good end to the morning's skiing with Bill reunited with his phone.

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Back again!

I drove back from Geneva in fresh snow and sunshine.  Today (just my luck) it's cloudy and visibility was poor and off piste heavy.  It is now snowing lightly.  The grandchildren were very good and easy.  We had fresh snow and sunshine in Norwich on Saturday and it was a beautiful, crisp, cold day.  It then rained overnight and all the snow went.  The puppy was not so good.   I'd prepared pigs' cheeks for supper and put them in a bag with seasoned flour to cook later.  Rufty managed to get them off the counter and eat 8 of the 14.   John had to go to Waitrose again to get us something else for supper.  The puppy spent the afternoon sitting outside the back door, looking forlorn.  He is not in my good books. 

Tuesday, 22 January 2013


We had 3 hours skiing this morning and now we're off to Geneva and home to look after the grandchildren.  It was bright blue sky, sunny, cold and about 10-15cms of fresh snow.  Let's hope it's as good when we get back next week.

Monday, 21 January 2013

Jimmy's 75th

Yesterday was our friend's 75th birthday.  About 30 of us had lunch at a lovely restaurant just outside St. Gervais.  We arrived at 1p.m. and left about 5p.m.  It was a beautiful day and the sun shone on Jimmy.  Today was grey and cold and snowing off and on.  Tomorrow John and I return to England to look after the grand children whilst Elizabeth and Caroline and their husbands come skiing.   I'm in Putney looking after Anna and Lizzie (10 and nearly 8) and John goes to Norwich to look after Emily and Tommy (nearly 10 and 5) and Rufty ( the cockapoo who is not yet a year old).   At the weekend the other grandmother takes over with Anna and Lizzie and I go up to Norwich to help John.   We are back here on Monday.  I expect they will have brilliant conditions and we'll have cold, grey rain!

Saturday, 19 January 2013

snowing again!

We skied this morning but the temperature has risen and the off piste was heavy.  The snow on piste was perfect.  We did rather a lot of walking, including climbing over a fallen tree, and then had to wait 20 minutes for a bus but it was worth it.  It is now snowing again.  Still, you've got snow at home.

Friday, 18 January 2013


John and I skied today with Gordon and Johnny (the manager of the Rond Point).  It was very cold but sunny and the snow was perfect.  We found lots of untracked powder which was great fun.  We all had tumbles:  Gordon into a tree well, John onto a piste de fond track, me with a tree and Johnny into a stream bed.  We started at about 9.30 and got back about 2.30.  The temperature on our balcony this morning was minus 13C and the streams in the centre of town are freezing over.  It's supposed to get a bit warmer over the weekend with some more snow.

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

The way home

John admiring our tracks.   As you can see there is still lots of powder if you know how to find it.

Sun and snow

It was a beautiful day today but very cold.  John had to go shopping at Metro this morning so I skied with Gordon.  We went off the back of the Epaule ridge down to St Nicholas De Veroce off piste, and then came back up and did half of the ridge again.  We then skied off the back of the Petit Epaule down to get the facilly bus which took us back to St. Nicholas.  The snow was perfect and there were few people about.   John then phoned to say he was coming up.  We tried the Gouet for lunch but people were queuing so we went to the Alpage which was lovely.  I had the fish soup as usual - it is delicious.  We then skied home off piste to the door of our apartment.  You don't get many days better than that!  It was very cold and in spite of wearing lots of layers we all suffered, particularly my hands.  I don't seem to find gloves that are warm enough.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Ski Cross

The World Cup ski Cross is being held at Cote 2000 this week.  We watched some of it today.  It appeared to be the individual time trials.  We were told that the Finals of the 4 abreast was today but it has been snowing most of the day and they've now been postponed until tomorrow, though we don't know the time.  The course starts from the top of the first chair lift to the bottom down the Ladies downhill course.  There must be about 15 high jumps with very sharp angled turns between them and then a steep run off at the end.  It's exciting to watch though there were few spectators  (it was snowing and cold).  We then skied home off piste (I managed a face plant in a ditch and lost both skis.)

Monday, 14 January 2013


Freezing fog this morning and trying to snow.  I skied for a couple of hours and then came home.  It now looks to be clearing!   The snow was lovely but visibility was nil. It's my Book Club this afternoon - we are studying Dylan Thomas.

Sunday, 13 January 2013


Another 10 cms of snow.  Cloudy at first but the sun came out later.  John and I skied with Gordon McNeil and Rob Holder ( the Australian who used to work in Ski Concept)in the morning.  We were too exhausted to ski in the afternoon.   We went over to Jaillet and skied off piste to Giettaz.  I missed the climb up to the piste so we decided to go along what we thought was the piste de fond.  After walking up hill both on skis and carrying skis we decided that that was not a good idea, but it was too late to go back.   We got to the lift in the end. We then went up the lift and skied to Praz Sur Arly.  We took a route that John last did with a guide about 7 years ago.  Consequently we got too low and ended up walking up hill (yes, carrying skis in thigh deep snow) then discovered we were walking up the wrong hill and retraced our steps to walk up the hill on the other side of the stream.  Apart from the walking up hill we had a great morning's skiing.

Saturday, 12 January 2013


Today was an almost perfect powder day - light, fluffy and sunshine. The only drawback was that it was Saturday and therefore quite busy (for Megeve). We skied off the back of Epaule, Mont Joli and back home via Planelet and La Maz. The only questionable snow was on the way home where the sun had caught it. Tomorrow more snow is forecast.

Friday, 11 January 2013


40 cms in town and more up the mountain. We had a splendid morning skiing through the trees off the Princess and Etudiant lifts. It was deep and hard work but great fun. We had a staff lunch at the Espace Mont Jeux and everyone made it ( except for Jason who went to the airport to pick up his cousins.) We have quite a few beginners and they were all enjoying themsleves.
It's supposed to be nice tomorrow so we're hoping Mont Joli will be open.

Tuesday, 8 January 2013


I skied in Contamines (for a change of scene) with Phil and Rebecca who worked for us at the Rond Point two seasons ago. We saw 11 chamois racing across the top of the ridge. They move so fast! It was a lovely day and very few people around. Some snow is forecast for Friday.

Sunday, 6 January 2013


We skied at Jaillet yesterday with the grandchildren. It was brilliant sunshine at the top but cloud in the valley. We skied over to Giettaz to try out the new chair lift which is a big disappointment. It is in 2 stages and no faster than the old one. We had lunch at Bonjournal. The children all had a ride home in the new horse drawn taxi from Jaillet to the square. John and I (boringly) got the bus back.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

New Powder & Sunshine

Snowed on Jan 1st and overnight.  Yesterday had about 15cm powder.  Cloudy and snowing lightly.  Poor visibility but great tree skiing.
Today bright and sunny.  Nobody about first thing - see pic below taken from Petite Fontaine chair.  Crowds came out later but a lot of Parisians are going home.  Looking forward to the next six weeks of deserted pistes until they come back again.
Lots of powder still unskied if you know where to look.


Beautiful day today. We skied powder at Cote 2000 and then had lunch at The Staduel. After lunch we skied with the grandchildren who insisted on skiing powder and then fell over. Great fun.