March 30, 2005

Fresh snow in Les Contamines

Last night we decided that today we'd go and see what the snow was like in Les Contamines. The weather forecast showed that the whole area was due a small amount of snow today but the freezing level was still going to be pretty high, around 1800m, so when we left this morning it was pissing down with rain. We expected to ride to the top of the Signal bubble in Les Contamines, look at the rain in disgust, have a coffee, bubble down again and then come home...

ViewFromTheBubble.jpg

The bubble journey up was as expected: the cloud level was very low and the rain was coming down reasonably heavilly. Lots of the lower level snow has gone but it looked like Montjoie red down to the base was still operational, just.

LesContaminesInCloud.jpg

We switched from the Mont Joie bubble to the Signal bubble and continued up. About half way up the rain started to turn to very wet snow and there was evidence of quite a bit of fresh snow laying on the ground below us. When we got to the top of the Signal bubble at 1900m the snow was reasonably heavy, if wet.

SnowingAtSignalLesContamines.jpg

Visibility was pretty poor and Les Contamines isn't the best place to ski in poor vis as it's quite open and exposed and has few trees so it's easy to get confused as to which was is up, but we were here and it was snowing and so we stayed...

We skied mostly around the Nant Rouge area, partly because I knew it and didn't really need to see it and partly because the snow was good and it was quiet. We spent the morning working on some technique things for Miche; the problems she'd had yesterday were still with her this morning and we didn't want them to stay as they'd caused stress on her knees yesterday. In the afternoon she discovered that the problem she was having seemed to be caused by her leaning in and slightly back on her left turn; we've no idea why she started doing that but hopefully she can deal with it now she knows what it is. The other techniques she worked on today were to give her more control in heavy snow and they seemed to work well for both of us; I find that when I play at teacher, like I did today, it helps my skiing as well as the person I'm trying to help. I don't think about my own skiing and just get on with it and that seems to work nicely ;)

The snow in Les Contamines today was pretty good. It was still softer later on, lower down, but at least it was pretty cold still and the fresh stuff was helping. Looking at the forecast they were expected to have around 10cm at mid mountain, I think they'd probably had about 6-7cm when we left at around 3.30 but the snow was easing up a little then so I don't know if they'll get the full 10 or not. Either way it's some of the best snow we've had recently and I expect we'll head back there tomorrow.


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Posted by Len at March 30, 2005 06:22 PM | Categories: Other Places , Season 1 - Photo Album , Season 1 - Ski Days , Season 1 - Weather Whinges
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