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Welcome to Doodlecat, where we enjoy the pleasures of life (with a slight bias towards the outdoors). This page is regularly updated with news and views plus information about any additions or changes to the various parts of the site. It acts as Doodlecat’s Blog too, so the odd rant considered opinion may pop up from time to time.

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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Snowshoeing




With a high pressure system sitting over europe and only a couple of days snow cover, so far this winter, on our local hills. It was time for a quick trip to the Alps for some snowshoeing and vin chaud.

With fabulous weather we decided on an ascent of the Prarion, then out to La Charme (see first picture above) for a picnic. Surprisingly, we saw no one else on the Prarion's summit, despite the Telecabine du Prarion being only a short distance away.

After several days snowshoeing in the Chamonix Valley & Switzerland, we took a trip round to Les Contamines for an easy ascent to Mont Truc. The train and bus connections ran smoothly and soon we were on the forest track from La Frasse to the Chalets de Truc. The snow cover was good and it was clear skies again as we summited on Mont Truc. The views were superb of the Domes de Miage, we descended and then climbed towards point 2048, just stopping on a small level area before the final slopes. Now the fun bit, we turned and ran back down the slopes to the Chalets de Truc for lunch.


Fiona snowshoes towards point 2048, with Mont Truc in the background.



Descending on snoeshoes is fun, you can run down powder snow in great bounds, just keep the front tips of your snowshoes up, otherwise you will take a dive into the snow.



Fiona prepares the the well earned lunch at the Chalets de Truc, after the descent from point 2048.

Despite being out every day of our holiday, we ran into only a handfull of other hikers snowshoeing. The only exception being the weekend, when the Chamonix Valley Train was packed with French Hiking clubs going snowshoeing, with their Accompagnateur's en Montagne . Startling, we ran into no groups from the U.K or Eire, why is this? Given the choice of staggering around in icy rain in 100 mile an hour winds on a British hill in winter or being in shirt sleeves, putting sunblock on and snowshoeing in deep snow with a blue sky above, I know which one I would chose!

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4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oooo....looks lovely. Wish I was there instead of frosty and fog bound Suffolk! Ughh.

Very happy pics.

Tini (Miss W.)

February 20, 2008 at 10:11 AM  
Blogger Phil said...

My Challenge training continues in less perfect conditions.

Inspired by your snowshoeing account, Miss W took me out into the Suffolk Hills today, quite undeterred by a total absence of snow.

As the semi-frozen wet clay weighed down each foot like a diver's boot, she shouted "now - just bound down the hill like Michael".

I bounded.

It is indeed important to keep the toes of your shoes pointing up when bounding, but difficult when they weigh about five pounds each ... I took an undignified dive into the frozen mire, emerging to hear Miss W giggling and saying her favourite catch phrase...

"You'll thank me for this in May".

February 20, 2008 at 2:57 PM  
Blogger Alan Sloman said...

Indeed: A Heartless Harpie, Phil.

You didn't get your nice new Paramo Jacket dirty, did you?

Lovely piccies Michael & Fiona: We love it here in the frozen murk and bogs. oh yes we do. Honest.

February 20, 2008 at 4:59 PM  
Anonymous michael said...

Glad to see Miss W is keeping Phil to his training routine, with only 10 weeks to go the snowshoeing will be essential for all those bog crossings.

Dave Skipp and I are currently looking after 3 casks of ale as the forward party of the BWA, we can report that the first cask of Red Kite is tapped and in fine condition. But will it last till the rest of the team arrive!

Michael

February 21, 2008 at 11:35 AM  

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