Tara & Oliver Vallée Blanche, Grands Montets, and Crochues-Bérard • Feb 18-19, 2009

Tara and Oliver, who hail from Seattle, joined Mark for two days of fine skiing in the Chamonix area. Our first day was full, starting with the Vallée Blanche, then zipping up the Grands Montets lift to ski the glacier on the back side. On day two, we did a fn variation of the Crochues-Bérard tour, passing through a tiny notch on the Aiguille du Bérard to find great snow in the upper Combe de Bérard.

Other Recent Trips

Starting at the Aiguille du Midi lift station in Chamonix. Oliver is practicing his "front-packing" technique.


At the bottom of the first significant pitch, great snow, though a bit windy up high.


Much lower down, in the gullies below the Refuge de Requin, Tara smiles.


Still smiling...


We are almost to the top of the short boot-pack at the foot of the Mer de Glace.


With the day still young, we continued on to the Grands Montets, where we caught a late lift to the top. Mont Blanc in the background (with the lenticular cloud), the Drus on the left.


With his big skis, Oliver likes to point them downhill and just go...


...but Tara likes to squeeze a few more turns out of the hill.


Our next day was spent touring. Here we are at the top of the Flégère lift complex, putting on skins for the ascent up to the Col des Aiguilles Crochues.


The final boot-pack up to the col.


Almost to the col.


The snow is great on the north facing slopes, and not even too tracked out!


A short shuffle leads to a bit more down hill before the skin up to the Aiguille de Bérard.


The short downhill, as promised.


This is the spectacular final ridge below the Aiguille de Bérard. The Aravis are the group of peaks in the background. We are looking west.


Through the notch in the ridge, and starting down the Combe de Bérard.


Fantastic snow.


Nothing more to say!