Sunday, 11 January 2015

Well, we survived day 1

Best of all was we met up with Ben, and went falling down snowy slopes together - us doing the falling, rather than him who did some of the picking up.

We are now both well bruised, but there's a certain pleasure in having made it down slopes with a gradient of "you have got to be kidding" and "Isn't that the black run - where does the blue run start?" Even Ben declared that the blue runs here are the steepest he's seen anywhere, and some of the runs that we fell down on were every bit as steep as the red runs we saw 6 years ago in Austria.

But the views were spectacular, amazing, wonderful, incredible - snow-capped mountains seen through trees and sheets of mist that would separate and the close up again.

We started off in a conventional cable car, then moved across to a chair lift. We did one run on a slope that would have been great except for it being patchy ice with a thin sprinkling of snow most of the way down before pickup up another chair lift. This took us most of the way to the upper slopes of the mountain: the temperature dropped, we got snowed on and my moustache froze. This was where the slopes turned from fun/tricky to nuts. Using the ski tracker app apparently my fastest speed was 33kph, but it wouldn't have been difficult to more than double, maybe treble that. We both fell (and both have bruised bottoms) with Chris nearly going off the edge of the piste & down the side of the mountain*. To out near-amazement we make it down alive. Another lift, another set of impossible looking slopes.

One advantage of an impossibly steep looking slope is that, with your legs downhill after you have fallen over, it is easier to get back on your feet.

Ben was really good, giving Chris advice, helping her get back up when she fell and being very patient. He also confidently told us that by the end of the week these slopes would be so easy that they would be boring.

Finally we got to a moderate blue run from Avoriaz (the highest resort) back to the cable car at Lindarets to descent to Ardent and the bus transfer to Morzine. Skis deposited, crepes purchased & consumed to keep us going between a buffet breakfast and the evening's 5 course meal, and we are able to relax and confirm there's no lasting damage to our bodies.

*While getting into the cable car at the top of Lindarets some paramedics were wheeling a bed with what looked like a skier tightly strapped in into another car.

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