This winter, what a season! April has started and here in the Alps, it doesn't look like it's slowing down...or warming up as we would expect or hope for. Even back at home it is looking to be a superb season and with no signs of slowing down either.
Since my last post there has been quite a lot going on. In February I jetted off to Aurland in Norway working for Moran Mountain. I had some of my regular clients along and working alongside some great friends made for a brilliant trip. Ice climbing is always good fun.
Skiing in the Alps has been close to non stop. Im just back from two hut to hut tours where we found some great snow but some rotten weather sometimes. Before that, I was observing guides with their clients, helping out and trying to learn as much as possible from them.
Rock climbing season doesn't seem that far away so I have managed to squeeze in a couple of cragging sessions in after skiing...to hopefully remind myself of how to do it!
The winter season is very close to the end for me. My final winter challenge is to pass my ski test. This is a 6 day assessment based in the Alps. Hopefully, the next time I post, I will be back in the UK with a big smile on my face. Results on the 20th April.
After that I will be back in the UK working my socks off before I go into the final stage of becoming a fully certified IFMGA Mountain Guide.
Here are a few pictures...but in no particular order!
|Tom topping out on a brilliant WI4|
|Day off with Donald. Always an adventure. Unfortunately we DNF this route.|
|Katya making her way up to join me on the first ascent of this route|
|Natcho bring some colour to yet another first ascent|
|A super WI5 with the strong Irish youth Neil|
|The WI5, mega route|
|A spot of leading for Neil (the youth)|
|Natcho and Neil organising themselves whilst leading Dambusters WI3|
|Natcho on the sharp end|
|Dream team from Alpine Guides. Just before we set of on the Silvretta tour|
|The hut is this way....honest|
|More like it...|
|Good snow, good skiers, good times|
|Lori contemplating where to go next|
|Deserted ski resort in Val Stura in Italy|
|Neil pausing to take it all in|
|The team join me ready for the freshies on descent|
|Another day, another blank canvass|
|Freshies, an overused but relevant word this season.|
|We found a hidden bunker...took some digging to get in|
|Filling the gaps|
|They were arguing about who gets to go next...there was plenty for everyone|
|a snowpack evaluation session|
|When the bed bugs hit!|
|Powder in Italy|
|More powder in the 'magic woods'|
|Vallee Blanche team|
|Skiing down to Italy with my mentor Andy Nelson|
|The client get to lead|