I can't believe it's been 6 months since I wrote anything here. And yet lots of great trips have happened so far this year, so here's a resumé of the action so far.
The winter was a good one in many ways, although it was made rather harder work because the snowpack was unstable in many areas due to a cold period early winter when there wasn't a very deep layer of snow. Once the snow fell in abundance there was plenty of it but deep down in the snowpack there were some nasty unconsolidated crystals which meant all slopes had to be treated with care. If you knew about this and were cautious then you could find plenty of safe walks and that's what I did.
Going out in the Alps in winter always requires care, and I have no problem turning around if I have the slightest doubt about a certain slope.
|Beautiful calm day near les Diablerets|
|Hot conditions in the Queyras|
Fortunately on snowshoes we are not looking for a special descent, not looking to get fresh tracks in the perfect powder, as skiers often are. We're just out for a walk, hoping to get lovely views and to enjoy a beautiful day in clear cold air, with maybe the odd bound down a small slope in nice deep snow if possible. Our aims are more modest, our objectives more flexible and so we can always find something fun to do even if we decide it's safest to stay the whole day in the forest.
|A few moments of quiet reflection in the Queyras|
We did a fantastic week of walking, and I am certain that Dévoluy will be a permanent fixture on my snowshoe programme in the future.
|Lots of fresh snow at Dévoluy|
|A magic viewpoint in Dévoluy|
|Checking out the view in the Queyras|
After the winter I was happy to spend time here in Provence. Springtime is just FANTASTIC here! I am still discovering so many secret gems in the many valleys and peaks just around where we live, it is very exciting.
|One of the "new" summit walks I did this month in Provence|
A Provence Summits week is confirmed for October - the first time I have run a trip then - and it will be fabulous. Next spring I will do a gentle trip and another summits trip to cater for all tastes.
|I will never tire of watching the vultures here in Provence|
|Corsica as it was last time I was there|
|I'm looking forward to a bit of swimming in Corsica|
|Last year's Gran Paradiso trek ended with this superb lake walk|
Next year will be the 25th anniversary of Trekking in the Alps. I am proud and amazed to have got this far. If, back in 1991, anyone had told me that I would manage to make it work and reach this landmark I would have been very sceptical. We're going to celebrate and I hope lots and lots of people will sign up. If not I will be wandering along the trails alone, but I'll still take balloons and cake and have a party because 25 years is a VERY long time.
|Holiday climbing - there won't be much of that now until the house is done.|
I'll try not to leave it another 6 months before I post again!
|Don't make me celebrate the 25th anniversary alone, be sure to come and join one of my trips!!|