It’s been another incredible season here in Chamonix, and hard to believe it is almost time already to leave for the spring Himalaya season. Time in the Alps always flies by, and this season has been no exception. Snow and coverage has been top notch in 2010 – all the famous ski routes have been in all the way down to the valley, avalanche hazard has been low, and we have even had our share of sunny days.
One of the real benefits of basing out of Chamonix for skiing is the incredible variety of terrain and options regardless of weather. On storm days we can ski trees or close to the lift systems.
As storms end we begin skiing the big classic off piste lines directly from the lift systems all the way to town (imagine 7000-9000 vertical foot descents with no hiking or ski touring to access them).
And then when we get a few bluebird days in a row we go on long ski tours, combining rides on lifts with ski touring and mountaineering, progressively traveling further and further and often starting in one town, eating lunch in another, and finishing the day with a beer in another town and usually in a different country!
This year we have been heading through the famous Mont Blanc tunnel and skiing lots in Italy. The Italian Alps close to Chamonix have great snow, few people, and of course the world’s best espresso and pizza!
Here are a few pictures from this season in and around Chamonix. Stay posted for a more complete photo gallery to come. And our dispatches and photos from our Mt. Everest expedition begin next week! Stay tuned.
-Adrian Ballinger, Alpenglow Expeditions