Sunday, 12 February 2012

MSR Dream Team hits the slopes with panache!

Europe has been in the grip of Siberian weather for the last two weeks and we certainly felt it in the Val Clarée. Névache is nestled deep into an extremely cold hollow, and last week saw night-time temps drop to minus 30°C. We certainly stayed well in the negative zone all day every day and high winds didn't help.
But take a look at the photos - bright and sunny every day, despite two half days of light snow which merely served to improve the already good powder we found for running down.

Above the tree-line the snow varied immensely from wind blown dense powder to scoured icy slopes to breakable crust to rare patches of powder. Not great for skiing, but on raquettes who cares, anything goes and we had a blast.

We even found snow deep enough for certain of the more athletic members to perfect their rolling techniques.  

The whole area impressed the group, all of whom have done several snowshoe trips with me and are very discerning when it comes to location, hikes and descents. The Val Clarée is undoubtedly one of the best snowshoe destinations in the Alps and Trekking in the Alps is offering more and more visits there each year.
Beautiful views, and many moments of solitude are guaranteed, and since the region advertises 300 days of sunshine a year then good weather is a fairly sure bet. This winter's two trips there have seen excellent weather and conditions.

A few days break now, then off to the Valle d'Aosta next week for more fun in the sun and snow, and also of course all the gastronomic and vineyard treats that the Aosta region is famous for.

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