There was just the odd cloud against a perfect blue sky this morning in Tignes and Val D’Isere; it was a little less cold (only a little though). A lot of the weekenders had gone home and the Varsity Team had a big party last night so all in all it was much quieter. We headed over to Solaise (pictured) which is in very good condition and then via Germain Mattis (mostly artificial snow) to the Laisinant chair and to Le Fornet. You still cannot ski between the bottom of the ‘up and over’ and the top of the Le Fornet Cable car but the cannons were blowing hard – so hopefully soon. I was quite surprised by the lack of natural snow around the Glacier (Pays Desert would be a non starter off piste for me), luckily they have had the cannons running so the snow was good on the Glacier pistes but not the perfect corduroy that you come to expect over there. We came back to Tignes via the ‘up and over’ and down Rhone Alpes into Val Centre, which was in good condition. There is a hive of activity in Val as the preparations go on for the Criterium which starts on Friday and runs for 10 days.
We now expect 2 days of blue skies and sunshine, slightly milder temperatures and little or no wind. In fact the full on Dame Vera…. The deterioration in the weather has been delayed a little so Thursday will start as a nice day but the breeze will pick up through the day and cloud will encroach from the north west (watch out for the hat forming on Mont Blanc). By the middle of the night it will be blowing a gale and it will start to snow, this will continue through Friday and into Saturday. It will not be continuous snow, more showers but overall accumulations will be significant (20-30cm as an early punt.) There may be a brief respite on Sunday before all hell breaks loose again.