I had a great weeks ski touring helping out Andy Teasdale with his group of clients on a six day ski tour around the Grand Paradiso national park.
We had pretty mixed weather, but with a bit of careful navigation we managed to stay on our intended schedule most of the week. We had quite a bit of fresh snow, and although wind blown at times, we still had some good skiing.
It’s a fantastic place the Paradiso national park, only an hours drive from Chamonix and quite a wild place. There’s a hunting ban there, so there’s loads of good wildlife as a result. We saw plenty of Marmots, Foxes, Golden Eagles and tons of Chamois.
Our intended last day was an ascent of the Grand Paradiso itself. Hoping to sneak up there before the weather came in we got up at five am for a look outside and some breakfast. It was already snowing, and there was a little wind blowing as well. We had breakfast anyway, and then back to bed for an hour and a half, the Paradiso was off, but perhaps we could skin to the head of the valley rather than back down to the car?
After an hour and a half of skinning in increasingly tricky conditions we called it a day and turned around. Our skin tracks had already filled in and the light was super flat making it tricky to be out in front route finding. Snow ploughing is a useful skill in those conditions! We had an interesting ski down anyway, apart from the odd snow covered rock, I gave my skis a right battering.
Photos on the facebook page: