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Month: March 2015

Italian Coffee – and powder/crust Ski touring

The title says it all really, three days in Italy using the superb Benevalo refuge. Coffee, jam tarts and a weeks worth of ski touring from the hut. I was guiding a group of six for Mountain Tracks. We had a mixed bag of weather, with our main middle day being windy and very cold. The team did very well to summit, but we were rewarded with a fantastic powder ski back down. The lower half of the mountains were pretty bad in terms of snow, with lots of breakable crust around, so we picked our last day carefully...

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Spring ski touring around Chamonix

I’ve just had two great days of ski touring with Elkie and Tim around the Chamonix area. It had snowed during the weekend so on Monday we were at the aiguille du midi nice and early to try and beat the crowds and get up to the Vallee Blanche. The powder was on a super firm base, so it was total hero skiing and we had fresh tracks down to the edge of the Tacal, where we then donned skins to tour up the side of the Tour Ronde. Italy had a spectacular cloud inversion but we didn’t hang...

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The Chamonix – Zermatt Haute Route in 3 days

Mountaineering and Ski Touring are pastimes, or hobbies. I don’t think you could call them “sports”. Every time you head into the hills you set your own challenges, climbing or skiing a certain peak, or completing a journey through the  mountains. At the end of the day its about personal challenges. Are you using lifts and huts to access the peak, or going from the valley in a single push? There are many ways to challenge yourself in the mountains, through technical difficulty, length, support etc etc I’ve just realised that this probably requires an entire blog on it’s...

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Mont Blanc Equipment List

Everyone loves a good kit list! This one is designed for a Mont Blanc ascent in normal summer conditions. Off season ascents obviously require a different set of gear. This list also assumes your using the mountain huts, and not carrying camping gear up and down the hill. You can always tell an experienced mountaineer by their rucksack, especially on a mountain like Mont Blanc. A light rucksack means you will move faster and more efficiently, and on a long summit day like Mont Blanc, dropping a few kilos from your back can have a big effect. Basically, drop...

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