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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    The realm of beer, chocolat and frites

    La Grave last March: ode to Ullr

    I didn't know I needed quasi-human sacrifice to get some powder. But one half-ACL (my girlfriend's) and one dislocated shoulder (my son's), both just after last Christmas, did the trick for the annual boys' March trip to La Grave.

    I'm posting it here in the hope that Ullr decides to show them, too, some love this Christmas.

    Last season was pretty barren in the Alps. When we arrived in La Grave, the valley didn't look great, but the forecast did. The next morning, things started off well:

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    A couple of our group of six hadn't skied much that year. We were supposed to start off with a warm-up run. But Pierre, our guide, had other plans. "When it's good it's good", he said, showing us the way to Triffides 2.

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    Good thing that La Grave is flat:
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    (bonus telepherique in the background)

    Or maybe not quite so flat :
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    (rappel in La Voute, starring irbis)

    It's fun inside the couloir, too:
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    That night it started snowing properly:
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    So the next days we skied some trees:
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    But also Triffides again:
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    And put first tracks in Les Freaux:
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    ...and then, following Pierre's faultless timing for a half-hour sunny window, first tracks in Chirouze all the way down. Too much fun to stop for a lot of photos in the actual couloir (and there was another group following), but here's one of Arno starting out:
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    This led to what must have been the comment of the week. The next day there was a long queue at the telepherique and Pierre looked at everyone and said: "Look at all these guys waiting to lay second tracks in Chirouze"

    I mentioned Pierre a few times. I think we fell in love with him. We certainly look up to him:
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    He must like us too, his body language says it all:
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    He gives us climbing tips:
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    Saves the best lunch spots for us:
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    ...and when he gets bored of us, he steps on the gas and gets lost in the distance:
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    Then again, wouldn't you, if you had this crew on your heels?
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    You really need to stop knowing WTF you're talking about. (Tippster)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    The realm of beer, chocolat and frites
    Did I mention Pierre has faultless timing? One morning we skinned up on the glacier, next to the closed draglift, and arrived on the south face at the perfect time to ski it. No one else did, that day. Yep that's right, just the seven of us for the whole day, including a skin up to Glacier de la Selle, witnessing a small avalanche on the opposite aspect, and generally enjoying life.
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    Another day we skied down to his house in this couloir:
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    Saw some chamois:
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    Last run of the last day, down from Dome du Monetier (irbis):
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    And to close the TR, a view of Le Rateau:
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    You really need to stop knowing WTF you're talking about. (Tippster)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Park City
    Awesome. Iíve never skied la grave in anything but boiler plate. Good on you!

    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
    I rip the groomed on tele gear

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    No longer Alexandria, VA
    Looks epic! Thanks for the stoke. Hoping to get there and time it right like you did one of these days.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Sick. Momentum building for a Europe trip.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    In a parallel universe
    Excellent, thanks for sharing!
    Looks like it was an awesome trip.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Thanks for sharing. Awesome stuff.
    Quote Originally Posted by Downbound Train View Post
    And there will come a day when our ancestors look back...........

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Special place, great pics and thoughts!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    F'n Midwest again
    aaahhhhh!!! great shit there horizon

    some day would be nice to rendezvous with you guys in euro land
    Aggressive in my own mind

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Nice bump. Don't know how I missed this.

    Very cool.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ernest_Hemingway View Post
    I realize there is not much hope for a bullfighting forum. I understand that most of you would prefer to discuss the ingredients of jacket fabrics than the ingredients of a brave man. I know nothing of the former. But the latter is made of courage, and skill, and grace in the presence of the possibility of death. If someone could make a jacket of those three things it would no doubt be the most popular and prized item in all of your closets.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Ventura Highway in the Sunshine
    Sweeeeeet, and a good motivator since I get on a plane to Zurich in 36hrs.

    Haven't got much skiing in and zero touring due to the fire, but super stoked to get to Europe. Conditions appear to be off the chart, but high avi potential.

    Thanks for the motivation.

    I agree it is a constitutional right for Americans to be assholes...its just too bad that so many take the opportunity...

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Bucket list for sure.... hope it survives.

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