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The view from............ Val d'Isere and the Espace Killy

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
gav_in59 wrote:
Hi Steve(or anyone else who could help),
Three of us are in resort from Sunday for one week. We are looking to book some lessons but dont want a full weeks worth, we have seen one company offering three mornings which sounds good.

Do you know what options we have. We are a mixed group so will end up in seperate classes but all want only 2-3 days lessons, not the full week. We have one beginner snowboarder, one intermediate snowboarder and one intermediate skiier.

Any advice would be helpful.

Thanks


Hi and thanks for the query... firstly not wanting a whole weeks worth of lessons is quite common.... the company that you are likely to have seen offering 3 mornings in the small group 'clinic' format is most likely to be the ski school I work for. www.tdcski.com. Not that many schools offer something between a weeks worth of group lessons and one off private lessons at the other end of the spectrum.

Finding options for the snowboarders is slightly more tricky though.... try Pro Snowboarding as a starter and see how you get on.

Hope that helps. Good luck!


Steve
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Hi, Thanks for the reply, ive passed the ski details on to my friend. Pro Snowboarding replied and have space for a beginer on a 3 day group lesson but are not offering an intermediate class next week. Also contacted Freedom but no reply yet, i think they only offer 5 days but quite reasonable for £189.

If there are any other Val related pointers I'm all ears, first time to Val this year, although have skied across while staying in Tignes.

Appreciate you help.
Thanks
Gav
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
gav_in59 wrote:
Hi, Thanks for the reply, ive passed the ski details on to my friend. Pro Snowboarding replied and have space for a beginer on a 3 day group lesson but are not offering an intermediate class next week. Also contacted Freedom but no reply yet, i think they only offer 5 days but quite reasonable for £189.

If there are any other Val related pointers I'm all ears, first time to Val this year, although have skied across while staying in Tignes.

Appreciate you help.
Thanks
Gav


Thats cool... sounds like you are well on your way to look at options.... just mention me so people know where the referral came from - not that I get anything from it but nice for people to know thats all!
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Boom a bluebird

Well the storm calmed down last night and by the time I went to bed it had totally stopped snowing and the skies were pretty clear.... so this morning I was not too surprised to see that there had (only) been about 7cm (official figure) in town of the fresh stuff but up high and especially on southern and eastern slopes due to a slight wind it was more and in some places nearly 15cm but in general about 10cm! So with the sun shining and the first pow day of the season there was a lot of excitement and eagerness to get up the hill.

The bus down to the La Daille so that I could take the funi and then the meet up at the bottom of Tommeuse was rammed but I just got on.

Anyway the morning was a very pleasant one as we headed to the Gratalu run to work on carving and despite the slope getting busy with 'clumps' of people and the fact that ENSA was running a race course setters course down the side which meant the slope was thinner than normal we lapped around and around working on technique. I was really happy with the changes and some good stuff going on - well done.

The day had been cold at minus 15 first up but slowly warmed up and by lunchtime in the midday sun is was a stonker of a day. Looking around there was some powder turns to be had but I also guess that there will have been quite a few people with ski damage this evening as with a thin layer of powder overlying the rocks and hard pack underneath it is not a waist deep powder day!

I had a tight turn around at lunchtime and spoke with the care agency as I think they might have found someone to move in to care for my mum and then I also had to chat with the care home where mum is staying at the moment - go, go, go.

The afternoon was a different story as the clouds built slowly. I had one of the Irish ladies I had been teaching last week and we initially lapped around on the Arcelle which was in pretty good nick before later on heading to do a couple on the red Cugnai... I choose that one as I knew it would not have been pisted so that she could work on dealing with 'non-predictable' piste conditions. It was a good afternoon and I think she got a lot out of it.

This evening I have been busy sorting my mums affairs out as well as finally fixing our satellite tv sky problem - the cables had come loose at the back, the connector plug on the balcony had also come apart AND the satellite dish had moved a little - no wonder it was multiple issues and a 'simple' fix could not be identified and Aaron from Satellite Val came and sorted me out.... yippee!




Now that IS a tricky one - which piste is this?

https://www.periscope.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1zqKVWrZzpaGB?autoplay&t=14

Sorry to be brief tonight but have quite a lot still to sort out tonight.

TTFN
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Sorry meant to post this interesting picture from Radio Val d'Isere showing weekly bookings in terms of number of bed nights week by week this season versus last season.... now whilst the overall % this season is (somehow) up about 6% I wanted to share it with you to see how different weeks vary in popularity e.g. Xmas week is not that busy a week in reality compared to half term weeks for example!

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St Jacques / Col de la Madeleine ?
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Is that near the bottom of Cairn?

For your cable car vs gondola question: A cable car has two cabins, one goes up with the other goes down and both come to a stop at the ends at the same time (the cable stops too). The cable reverses direction for them to return, and each cabin has it's own loading position in the station.

With a gondola there are usually many cabins, and they go around the vertical axle so they cable always moves in the same direction.

Cable cars are often used in windy places because when the winds get particularly high both cabins can be held in the station so there is little for the wind to catch.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
steveangus we are making another return trip to Val and i have a couple of quick questions for you .

1) We have some beginners joining us this year , which is the FOC run in the center , is it Village
2) We have boarded the valle perdue many times , but i dont think i have ever been able to locate the Trifollet run , I know its below Tommeuses , but is it easy to find ? and is it usually open
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I think I can answer both of those:

1) There are a few, marked with dotted lines on the piste map. Village is a chair for the first day green slopes, Rogoney goes a bit higher for a short blue at the bottom of Plan M.
2) It branches off Verte shortly below Tommeuses and was shut last time I was there. According to https://www.valdinet.com/lifts/status it's shut at the moment too (Bellevarde area)
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mrkn - darn it - thought that was quite a hard one... obviously not. Its St Jacques just before it merges onto the CdlM

thelem - welcome to Snowheads!!!!.... yup that really sums up the difference between the two (gondolas and cable cars) nicely thanks. However also a cable car (in the same way as a funicular train) has the cabin going down used to help pull the other cabin up the hill to counterbalance (to an extent) each other.... so a cable car is (age allowance) quite power efficient.

It just gets under my skin a little when people talk about (for example) the Olympic cable car - it doesnt exist! Minor silly annoyance but it is still an annoyance! grumpyoldman.com!

gwatts10 and thelem - to clarify the Village and the poma (Savonnettes) lifts yes are FOC... however the Rogoney and Rogoney Stade poma (I think this one too now) are no longer totally FOC as they are included in the 'Solaise' only lift pass that was brought in this year to allow people to get up to the new magic carpet learner slopes up top of Solaise.... so there are fewer options now totally FOC! Also the Trifollet run you can get to in two different ways.... down the Valle Perdue then as it opens out and before the 'lower' part of the Perdue peel off left and it is there OR you can head down the Verte piste below the Folie Douce.... after about 500 yards as you 'enter' the tree line there is a bridge on the left as the piste gradually flattens off and bears right... head left over the bridge. And yes it is still closed for the time being!
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Can you help? Are yo looking for intermediate snowboard lessons in Val D'isere next week?

I am wanting to book an intermediate group snowboard lesson for next week but no companies in the whole of Val D'isere can offer an intermediate group lesson unless there is a minimum of 2 or 3 people wanting to join. Currently I seem to be the only one looking for intermediate lessons in Val D'isere but this cant be true!?

If anybody is looking for group snowboarding lessons, 3-5 days starting 16/17th Jan please let me know and we can conctact the same company and get a group set up. I have found one company offering 3 days, 3 hrs per day for 190 Euros, if a second person signs up they will run the group.

Fingers crossed.

Thanks
Gav
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.

Threatening up there first thing but would take until the end of the day before it finally started to snow!


Oh yes by this evening it was hammering it down

The big one

It has been an interesting day weather wise.... threatening nearly all day with wind (quite strong) strictly above 2800m or so (drop 100 below that and there was no wind and as soon as you got to about 2800m it was really quite windy - weird! So there was the odd glimpse of blue sky and sun but generally it was heavily overcast all day long.... it FINALLY decided that it just had to start snowing about 4pm though and BOY has it snowed hard all evening long and probably non stop for the next 24 hours or so! So far there is about 10cm more snow out there and by morning it is likely to be a LOT more!

This morning I met (slightly later as someone - no names Brian, took a wrong turn (having done it MANY times before) at the top of the Toviere) the team and we had a lovely morning working on carving and in particular working on activating the ankles, knees and hips and in doing so the need to laterally seperate as much as possible. It was fun. The highlight for me of the morning was swapping my skis with Brians as he was on pretty nippy and turny SL skis whereas my skis are more GS orientated.... yeehaa it was fun!

The afternoon was spent with the same booking as Monday and we worked on piste technique on red runs and there were some funny moments and challenges galore.

I tried to do my Periscope later in the afternoon too but for some reason it only recorded for about 30 seconds and died so lets forget I even tried to do that. However I think the problems are more widespread as the whole of Val has been without phone and internet lines (well most of the resort anyway) all day and the problem continues - something to do with a workman severing a cable during roadworks or something but that is a totally unfounded piece of gossip I hasten to add.

.... and I think that is all the news for today.

Ill finish today with some photos and my analysis I managed to snap of people coming down / past me as I waited near the bottom of the Tommeuse lift this morning. Just to outline what I see when I watch people ski / snowboarding along!


Standing on the heels and dropping the weight on the inside of the turn causing the skis to split... even on a very flat part of a run here.... minor errors will be amplified on more challenging pistes!


Classic counter rotation means the board is being 'steered' from the back foot. Also as the rider is not balance along the 'length' of his tow edge he will find it hard to do things such as carve the board. The turn shape from back foot steering will not be rounded so learning to ride off piste in deep powder will be nigh on impossible!


The inside hand dropping down and back means the left shoulder is going to be used to 'pull' the skis around so there is insufficient seperation. This will again mean issues on steeper slopes!

TTFN


Last edited by And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports. on Thu 12-01-17 23:42; edited 1 time in total
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Steve Angus wrote:
a cable car (in the same way as a funicular train) has the cabin going down used to help pull the other cabin up the hill to counterbalance (to an extent) each other.... so a cable car is (age allowance) quite power efficient.


Doesn't the same apply to any lift? The gondolas going down hill will counterbalance the unladen weight of the gondolas going up hill. I'd have thought a much bigger difference would be the air resistance of two large cabins vs a lot of small cabins. The Olympic probably gets called a cable car more than most gondolas because it has such large cabins (although they have seats in them, which cable cars don't usually get for some reason).

That's a shame about the change to Rogoney, I've used that in the past when I've arrived in resort shortly before the lifts have closed and I've wanted to get a feel for the snow under my skis but it's not worth a whole day pass.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Steve Angus wrote:



The inside hand dropping down and back means the left shoulder is going to be used to 'pull' the skis around so there is insufficient seperation. This will again mean issues on steeper slopes!

TTFN



It must be interesting seeing how everyone skis and thinking how you'd get them to improve. One of these days I will have to book a lesson with you!!


Last edited by You know it makes sense. on Fri 13-01-17 2:19; edited 1 time in total
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
The Olympic is almost a hybrid between a gondola and a cable car. It's set up as a continuous ropeway like a gondola with cabins that detach from the line but it is also hung from suspension ropes with a separate haul rope like a cable car. Nor is it a DMC where the haul rope and suspension ropes are combined and live.

No doubt there is a good reason for that particular design ?
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gwatts10 wrote:
2) We have boarded the valle perdue many times , but i dont think i have ever been able to locate the Trifollet run , I know its below Tommeuses , but is it easy to find ? and is it usually open


Closed the whole week the last 2 times I've been in Val d'Isere. I think it's in often in avalanche risk from slopes on the left. People ski it anyway, I guess they think they are immortal. If you descend from the flatish area near the Tommeuses base and keep left you will find it.
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Peter S - think you are now the inhouse technical expert on the 'runnings' of ski lifts... It replaced a cable car and certainly has cabins that are cable car'esque size! It is a good Dopplemayr 'ropeway' design - they make the best lifts in the world these days id say!

dogwatch - yea keep left as you say and you'll find it - defy gravity after you do the famial and stay left and your on it. But yes it can be avalanche prone but more often than not it catches a lot of sun therefore (as it is rocky underneath) the conditions on the slope are often less than ideal so you need good coverage and when you dont get that it has to be closed for people safety as well as the avalanche danger from above yes!
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Morning update

Well folks the snow has come!

Some photos (not mine from the last 12 hours or so)


Chains are necessary on all vehicles up and down the road from Bourg...


Daybreak - thanks to Romu at Radio Val for this one

So we have had about 20+cm down here in town but it is drifting into 30cm + in other places.... up top - who knows. All I know is that a lot of PEDA is taking place and the CATEX stations were all systems go about an hour ago but now it will be the GASEX's that are going. High winds out there. There will be a severe slow and delayed openings that is for sure but things will open up. Cabins on the Solaise are still off the cable and I should think the same applies to the Olympique but I cant see from here.

I (fluke) have this morning off but am teaching this afternoon.

Watch for further updates!
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You'll need to try much harder with your quizzes to catch us Tignards out Mr Angus !
Back in the uk for a couple of weeks but will be in touch for a session w/c 30th Jan, your diary permitting.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@Steve Angus, thanks for a fantastic four days of great skiing/learning. We so enjoyed it- lots to work on for the coming weeks. We are snowed in here in Val Claret (actually strong winds are the issue) with only Bollin and Tichot open- also we both have bad colds so we couldn't have planned the week better. Great teaching, great weather and great pistes- what more can we say?

BTW- Brian was thrilled to swap skis- I think it was a highlight for him!

Back under the duvet now...hopefully out early tomorrow to enjoy the new snow.

Thanks so much again, will be back to demonstrate our progress in a few months!
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mrkn - dont temp me - will have to make it impossible! Only have Monday 30th Jan pm and Wednesday 1st Feb pm free by the looks of things... possible the Fri / Sat too but might also be having to head back to the UK then... not sure.

lynnecha - MY PLEASURE. THANK YOU. Boo re being snowed in... pretty full on over here too. Not too many options for lessons out there! Get better soon!. Yea swapping skis is fun. Yea hopefully tomorrow will be a pow day for you. Yup send me some video of the progress you make!!!! TTFN
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Hold on tight

Well the snow and wind (not too bad initially started rolling in late yesterday) and by this morning there was a good 30cm out there although the wind was creating havoc so in some places it was drifting a lot more.

I was heartened at breakfast time to hear the Gasex's going off (remotely activated from down in town) but the pisteurs (it soon back apparent) could not make it to the catex stations because of the wind was so intense. I heard that there had been 250km/h winds at the top of the Grand Motte so obviously it was less windy lower down but still it was raging out there.

I had fluked the morning off anyway (working later in the day) so I caught up on lots of bits and pieces and had a relatively peaceful few hours. Clare took Olivia to creche and she too had the morning off so it was nice to actually spend some time together!

There was very little open initially and the wind was going from OK to dreadful within the space of a few seconds. Anyway by mid morning I was gearing up to meet my seasonnaires - the first session with my first group and we battled as best we could for the lesson. There is always something you can work on no matter what terrain is available to any level of skier e.g. one legged skiing on the nursery slopes for racers etc so I was not too phased that we only had the savonettes.

I have been in this industry and teaching for over 20 Winter seasons now and 11 winters teaching in Val and I have NEVER been in the situation where, at times (it did vary) we were confined to just the savonettes as not even the Rogoney or the Village could open. If I had had a stronger group then I could have taken them up to Fornet as the cable car there was running and skied the Mangard but it was not an option. Anyway ce la vie we managed our best.

I came home and warmed up with a nice cuppa before Lou and her daughter (a few months older than Olivia and as she was born in 2013 she has started school already) Mea popped around for a play date.

And that pretty much sums the day up.

The good news was that the internet finally came back online after Orange and SFR had had a technical problem for over 24 hours with most of the lines in resort which reaped havoc.

So the snow has continued all day long and should continue all night tonight although less intently and throughout tomorrow so I suspect that the roads will be less than ideal tomorrow but thank goodness it is not a busy one.

There is a jolly good chance that everyone will need to have chains on to go down as well as up the hill tomorrow so be prepared and allow plenty of extra time!

Talking of tomorrow I have to head back to the UK for a few days in relation to sorting things out for my mum so will NOT be posting tomorrow through to Tuesday inclusive.... sorry!

I did however manage today to fit in my Periscope before the battery on my phone died (bearing in mind I have a second back up battery attached to the back of my phone the cold eats the power up!) about 90% the way through my broadcast but you get the drift!

https://www.periscope.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1eaKbRVDknkKX?autoplay&t=26


This image REALLY doesnt do it 'justice' to what it was like out there today but there you go!

So there you go - see you all in a few days time.

P.S. The PIDA is starting at 7am tomorrow but nevertheless expect it to take quite a while tomorrow for everything to get going (if at all) with this wind.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Battery dying? Sounds like an excuse to get out of doing a snow angel. 😂😂😂👍
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smagsmith wrote:
Battery dying? Sounds like an excuse to get out of doing a snow angel. 😂😂😂👍


Ha ha - ill give you a snow angel... well maybe send you to a place you'll see angels - ha ha!
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Back in the game zone

Well folks thanks for bearing with me... it has been a very hectic few days heading back to the UK to sort out some family matters but I got back to Val late last night and straight back into a days teaching today!

So it was a cold but sunny start to the day.... however at altitude there was a stiff wind blowing... not quite enough to shut lifts down (I dont think) but a pain in the backside non the less.

So I met up with my am session and we headed up Solaise.... It was nice to have someone that had most elements in place to make a great skier and we developed things that were already present but needing further development and more exagerating. It was a successful morning and we lapped around and around the Arcelle and the snow was in perfect form.

At lunchtime (as Clare mothers is still here) I met with her as well as Clare and Olivia and some other friends and their kids and went to the creperie in Val Village. I always assumed that they only do sweet crepes etc but it is way more - salads, savoury crepes etc.... it was nice snack lunch!

By the afternoon the sun was getting quite strong and it felt quite nice out there.

I met my afternoon seasonnaires for their first session (I have 3 groups this year) and this group is pretty strong... some have even done their instructor exams (BASI 1 and 2). So anyway we worked on piste performance short turns and after my experience of the great snow in the morning on Arcelle I once again looped around there for a few hours. As usual with my seasonnaires I always enjoy doing a 'trick of the day' with them... something simple for the first session... backwards skiing.

Anyway that pretty much brings you up to date.... so tired this evening that I will make it a short one... back on form tomorrow.

TTFN




And of course todays periscope too:

https://www.periscope.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1vAGRdqoRMaxl?autoplay&t=1

TTFN
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Steve Angus wrote:
So it was a cold but sunny start to the day.... however at altitude there was a stiff wind blowing... not quite enough to shut lifts down (I dont think) but a pain in the backside non the less.


Cold seats on the chairlifts? snowHead
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Catch up

Well it was a very rare morning when both Clare and I did not have to get up at the crack of dawn.... I was just down to work this pm with seasonnaires but I filled up my morning with a whole host of jobs that needed doing and catching up with emails etc. It was a jolly successful morning at that.

I could have gone to watch the Europa Cup on the Joseray piste (the red run that goes down the side of the Face) but I didnt... perhaps ill see some tomorrow as there is another GS tomorrow.

I fitted in my periscope at lunchtime and also got my photo jig going... I thought it was a rather nice photo even if I do say so myself!



https://www.periscope.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1gqxvZgOeXzxB?autoplay&t=1

The afternoon I took out my 2nd seasonnaires group and they were a jolly nice lot... solid certainly on greens and blues to an extent but there were a few jitters around when it got a little scraped off. One girl had taken a big fall the other day and was very scared that is for sure. However I like to think that I set a climate that got everyone set up and we had a fun session and as usual my 'trick of the day' always puts a smile on their faces. It was relatively chilly up there but no / little wind (certainly up the Bellevarde side) which was cool!

By 4pm it was time to head home for a cuppa.

Not much else to report this end.

TTFN
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
A day of two halves

One of the best thing about this job is that no 2 days are the same and today really emphasized that.

I (along with 3 colleagues) we are set to go at the meeting point on time this morning at 9am but there was no sign of the client and his associates. The client is someone who often skies with TDC so he was a 'known' but what was unknown was that he was here this time on a boys trip with 14 old school mates and they came to the meeting point in dribs and drabs and to say there were some large hangovers floating around the place was an understatement that is for sure.

Anyway after much faffing and trying to work out who was really coming or not, who was still in bed etc we finally got going just after 9.30. Those regulars in Val d'Isere will know that many ski schools start lessons at 9.30 and in doing so you hit rush hour, get busier pistes and lift queues rather than heading out at 9am. So we basically got right into traffic from the offset and it was gone 10am before finally started skiing. A session working on a few fundamentals was the go before we dropped off the side of the piste (the session had been billed as an off piste session but they both admitted beforehand that they were probably not ready for such 'extremes' yet a while) and tried some of the Jardin du Borsat.... it was educational to say the least.

Lunch was taken at Tartine and they do a darn good Calzone takeaway mini pizza there.!

The afternoon I had another one of my seasonnaires groups and this (on paper) was my weakest group. However they suprised us all as we and we ended up doing some pretty tricky pistes and there were smiles all round by the end.

Whilst some of us were out teaching others were lucky enough (they drew the correct straw) to head on a heli exploration day as as a ski school we are looking to branch out to take heli ski trips across to Italy and so today was time to scope out some options... im not even going to share the pics as it will make us all sick!

In local news the second of two Europa Cup GS races took place down the Joseray piste (down the side of the Face) and by all accounts all the racing went according to plan.

The official launch of the new Solaise gondola took place today as well (I thought it happened a couple of weeks ago but I could be wrong). Anyway the STVI also unveiled not only cabins 89 and 90 that have glass floors but also the new (today) cabin 91 that apparently looks like this in side (complete with personal music system and glass floor as well as heated seats)



The forecast for traffic tomorrow is a pretty hefty (for this time of the year although should not create traffic jams I dont think) of 26000 cars entering through Albertville towards Moutiers.... so perhaps allow some extra time on the transfer folks just in case!




Look amazing on the racing front!

Finally my periscope for today too!

https://www.periscope.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1dRKZXQWeXvJB?autoplay&t=4

TTFN
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
A quiet day

It was a swift start to the day but then slowed down again. Olivia awoke quite early and came into our bedroom for a nice wake up call and in doing so woke Clares mum who has been staying with us all week and has been utilising the sofa bed. Anyway that in itself was not too bad as it was around about 7am but once awake I remembered that it was my turn to get breakfast sorted so I rapidly threw on some clothes so I could pick up some yummy chevallot goodies for breakfast.... pain au chocolats, pat d'ours, brioche choc chip to name but a few. Needless to say we had a nice family breakfast.

After a lazy hour or so we headed out to have a family ski on the Village lift... it was nice as both Clare and I could ski with Olivia and Clares mum could get some photos etc...

My periscope was taken on the Village lift today and then after some family time at home we all went for a walk around town and a nice family dinner before Clares mum has just left on the train back to the UK.... farewell and thanks for all your help!

Apart from that it has been a very quiet day it really has! For once I am totally stuck for things to think about to talk about. Tomorrow I have another day off (as is often the way in January - plenty of down time before we start ramping up again for Feb HT) so shall be taking Olivia swimming and then I think we are going to have a family roast dinner tomorrow night - yum yum!

So I shall sign off for now!

TTFN



https://www.periscope.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1MnxnrQgDekxO?autoplay&t=3
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
What a great day

Well there is really only one story that I know is all over the place and everyone knows about but that is Dave Ryding in the World Cup Slalom in Kitzbuhel today. Coming 2nd is absolutely incredible especially when you consider there is no funding for UK Alpine athletes (in effect) and when you compare it to the power houses of Austria et al where it is their national sport. As people may know 60,000 odd people watching the race today - it is the Austrian equivalent of the FA Cup Final. It has been an awfully long time in the coming this but I have always said that Britain is way better than the laughing stock most people think we are when it comes to Alpine ski racing. If only there was more support out there our athletes could bring home many many more podiums etc. Im hoping that such a result will highlight the potential out there.

But anyway no need to have a full on rant here - ha ha.... but today belongs to Dave and many congrats.... some people have said that he should have won - the problem was that that course was really rutted and not running as true the further along you went through the race... Hirsher had such a storming run and Dave would have known he would have thrown it away if he attacked too much and straddled / crashed out or whatever so played it safe and went for a more certain 2nd place.

... and to top it off Englands cricketers came away from their last ODI match today with a win.... it was pretty thrilling and I dont think they were the better team on the day but alas they won. Lets see how they fair next week in the T20's - that will be exiting stuff!



.... and I like this too!

Anyway apart from watching lots of sport, having some family time and taking Olivia swimming (oh and also having a nice family Sunday lunch) it was a very relaxing day indeed. I focused on 'how to get to Val d'Isere' in my Periscope broadcast today.

https://www.periscope.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1djxXZoXmwRGZ?autoplay&t=2


Up high it was another stunning day out there.

So although I was not skiing today the snow conditions up there remain excellent, some lovely weather and wonderful piste conditions. Off piste there is some nice stuff still be had although it is getting harder to find and in many cases the wind has stuffed it up but there you go! However one thing is for sure that danger off piste is never too far away. Regular visitors to Val d'Isere and Tignes will know that the 'bowls' off the sides of the Creux piste (which is the blue run that broadly speaking follows down to the side of the Tommeuse lift) can be lethal and indeed people have drowned in the Spring time after becoming submerged by avalanches into those bowls as there are lakes in those bowls in the Summer). Anyway Henry from Henrys Avalanche Talk (HAT) posted this photo showing how easily you could stray to the convexity of these bowls just off the sides of the run and if you were standing in the wrong place then this would be a HUGE slide to get taken by.... you would definately be buried and I bet the depth of snow at the bottom is a good 2m down there so quite possible fatal! Take care out there.



TTFN
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Hi Steve, just wanted to pop on to say thanks for the great lesson on Wednesday, you gauged it just right in terms of what i was looking to get out of it. Spent the rest of the week thinking about putting it all into practice. Can't say I've done many superman jumps since though Laughing It was also great to know what i am doing right as well which is equally as valuable as knowing where to improve.

I did manage to ski down something much tougher than le face, i went down sache (i think?) i think that run has every type of terrain and condition in one single piste! Hard work but glad i did it, its all experience as they say.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@ Steve, wonder if you could assist please?

Over in Val for half term week again and unfortunately my wife needs to video conference back to the UK for work meeting one day. Unbelievably, we are being advised that the apartment booked does not have wi-fi (although trying to confirm if we can pay to access it), but in the event that we cannot, could you advise of somewhere my wife could go to access a robust wi-fi (payment is not a concern) in a bit of a quiet location? Will save her having to fly home early if we can get this set-up. She has contacted a number of hotels and the Tourist Office but with limited success...

Thanks
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Why not just tether off your phone? @Robbarber, There's 4g in a lot of spots in Val and worst case 3G.. 4G will be better than any hotel wifi anyway probable. Not sure on her / your phone package but I get 2G a month roaming included.
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Apparently the Solaise gondola has wifi - that would make a great video conference!
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Russeh - thanks so much!!!! Glad you enjoyed. Yes the Sache is a tricky run eh... Try Foret in Fornet too for a challenge and perhaps Epaule du Charvet but the Sache goes on and on and on doesnt it!

Robbarber - which apartment company are we talking about here... if someone like Mountain Rooms then I am surprised but if P+V then I am not surprised at all! If the call is during the day (assume it is) then if I were here then id head to a large hotel bar like Aigle des Neige and they have booths there and that might work as good wifi throughout those expensive hotels but failing that then as Alex A suggests why not tether from her phone - there is LOADS of 4G available throughout resort!

thelem - you have to get on and off every 6.5 mins though!
Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy
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A varied day

Olivia had us up early again this morning but the sun was shining and it was beautiful sun rise so it was not so bad!

My am was comprised of a session with a lovely young lady from London who had not skied for (apparently) 16 years which means she was a teenager the last time she skied but boy she was pretty natural. Say one thing and she did it. We started cautiously on the magic carpet up Solaise and took it from there. It didnt take long before she was coming parallel on the Madelaine so I was rather impressed with my teaching.




Photo courtesy of Radio Val

It felt pretty warm out there today and the sun shone hard all day but there was a thin veil of clouds at time which took the 'sting' out the sun. However bearing in mind it is still January it still does not have any effect on the snow quality thank goodness!

My lunchtime periscope unfortunately had a sound glitch so I had to take a second go at it...

https://www.periscope.tv/SteveAngusSnow/1zqJVWelPwVxB?autoplay&t=10

After the worlds fastest lunch ever eaten (I had to go to the office to pick up off piste packs at lunchtime) it was time to get stuck into an off piste session... one of three with 'dad, son and son's girlfriend' The challenge was going to be to find some nice snow but not too far from piste that we were going to have to hike ages for it. The other issue is that the wind has wrecked the nice snow we had last week but I like a challenge so taking on things such as the Cugnai was the order of the afternoon and what a beautiful descent it was - the snow was pretty darn decent actually. OK no powder but some lovely chalk out there and a little souffle in places too!

I got home and have been stuck behind the laptop all evening - it just seems to be one of those evenings.... ho humm!

Nothing particularly interesting happening in local news this end I dont think so ill sign off for now as Olivia I think has just woken up as she has a sore throat so this might take some sorting out.

TTFN
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Dear collective,

We are out to Val in March as two families each with one 4 year old and two nearly 3 year olds (at the time of going).

This will be their second ski trip this season and they all went to village des enfants in Avoriaz.

Are there any such ski schools/instructors that will take children under 3?

Thanks in advance for any help!
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Page23 wrote:
Dear collective,

We are out to Val in March as two families each with one 4 year old and two nearly 3 year olds (at the time of going).

This will be their second ski trip this season and they all went to village des enfants in Avoriaz.

Are there any such ski schools/instructors that will take children under 3?

Thanks in advance for any help!


Hmmm the short answer is no im afraid..... we only take our daughter (who is also coming up 3) out as a) we are both instructors b) live here and c) can do VERY short low intensity 'fun sessions' at a time! At age three you can get private lessons but that is about all im afraid! If I were you I would do 'snowplay' with them - e.g. snowmen building and the 'learning' at that age is them getting used to getting around in the cold and snowy environment more than anything! Good luck!
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@Steve Angus is that the top of the Solaise in the picture, with the old top station for the Solaise Express in the middle? If so, it looks like the new top station is further along, so you don't have to get that annoying rope lift any more?
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
thelem wrote:
@Steve Angus is that the top of the Solaise in the picture, with the old top station for the Solaise Express in the middle? If so, it looks like the new top station is further along, so you don't have to get that annoying rope lift any more?


yes it is, and yes it is, and (again) yes it is and that rope has now gone.... to reply to your points!
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