Kathy and Mark on an amazing Vallée Blanche play-day • January 22, 2013

Fantastico! Yesterday's storm becomes today's dream.

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While Mark is shoveling off the house walkway (only and inch or two of new), Kathy comes out and casually suggests a run down the Vallée Blanche. Why not? We had no idea it would be this good. Sure, it had snowed some the previous day, but down in the valley, or even in the Le Tour ski area where we were trying to find some fun skiing in the trees, there really was not a lot of fresh snow.

Anyway, with the skies clearing, and with a nice comfortable start of 10 am, up we went. It looks like we are not alone.


We thought we would head out to the Grand Envers route and have a look to see just how loaded the slopes really were. There were a few small groups ahead. Just the right number to set off the possible avalanches, but not track everything up.


Looking down into the first bowl.


Kathy traverses into the first bowl. Though someone did trigger some sloughs to the left, the snow felt pretty good.


Looking back up at the second steep bowl. What is normally an open bergschrund about a third of the way up the slope is almost completely buried.


Looking up at the third steep little bowl. Unbelievably deep snow. This is not the aftermath of a crash, but the result of over-the-head powder. With every turn we were blinded, and an open mouth was an invitation to a snow-tasting.


Lower down, it remained incredible. we are now getting down to near the level of the Requin hut.


Too much fun.


Almost down to the Mer de Glace.


The last little slope down to the flats.

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