A day of big queues and colossal avalanches!
It was a nice bright morning, but the light faded as it clouded over and by lunchtime there was light snow in the air, thanks to the weather front coming a bit further south than we thought. Its now grey and damp in the villages.
After a couple of days of cabin fever, everyone was out this morning and with only 2 thirds of each resort open by lunchtime we had to be a bit inventive with route planning. The fresh snow was consolidating quickly lower down in the high temperatures. We will have to wait for the lighter stuff higher up until tomorrow. Of course, we had to keep an eye out for the avalanche risk, so it was gentle slopes including the lower part of the area off Grand Pre and Familial all the way down Triffolet into La Daille (the first time we have risked the skis down there this year!). However, the size of some of the avalanches was incredible. Especially the Chardonnet Bowl. The crown line was reportedly 2.5 metres in some places and extended from above ‘the side entrance’ all the way past the classic couloir entry point and round the bowl to skiers left. The debris field was about 20m past the Grand Huit Chair.
Talking of avalanches, the road to Bourg will be closed tomorrow between the dam and below the Brevieres from 11.00am to 13.30pm. They are going to blast La Combe de la Davie which eventually funnels down a gully just below the Brev tunnel (where the red lights are). So if you see a helicopter flying over the other side of the valley above Les Brevieres around 11 stop and have a look. If it goes, it will be spectacular. There are many places around the Brev sector where you could view from, the easiest to describe is to the left of the piste just below the top station of the Brev bubble (just before the piste turns 90 right).
The snow will stop this evening and the wind will drop. Tomorrow will be cloudy in the morning with a hint of sunshine in the afternoon, it will be a good 3 or 4 degrees warmer than today. Friday will be sunny, the pesky wind will be back at altitude which may shut the high lifts. Saturday looks like a warm spring day, the temperature will increase again, there may be a thin veil of cloud in the afternoon. Sunday will see sunshine and showers, the snowline will be around 2000m in the morning, lowering to 1500 in the afternoon. Monday, also looks showery, we will see the sun but there could be extended heavy showers of snow down to 1400m, this theme of sunshine showers looks like continuing for a few days more.
The avalanche risk remains at Level 4, as the forecaster says at the end of the bulletin: “Une grande méfiance est de rigueur” (A great deal of mistrust is required).
If you’re coming out to ski next week and you’re wondering what skis to buy or hire, here‘s a handy guide to the best all-mountain skis of 2017, reviewed by Winter Ninja. For more of their expert gear reviews head to winterninja.com.