Business as usual – Breche Du Tacul

Lorne Enjoying some good snow on the Leschaux Glacier with the north face of the Grandes Jorasses in the background..

Its days like these that remind me why I live in Cham.  It feels so good to be back out ripping around the mountains again.  Yesterday myself, Rob Stokes, and Lorne Cameron headed up for the Breche du Tacul.  This isn’t the first time that I have skied this route but I had such a good day on it last time around I knew it would be a good day again.  Its been a week since the last snowfall and its been warm in Cham since so a lot of the snow has been destroyed by the sun.  The couloir that you ski on the Breche Du Tacul faces almost directly east so fortunately the sun softens the snow up enough in the morning to make the skiing very pleasant.  With an easy skin, bootpack and some fun easy mixed climbing up to the Breche this route is constantly interesting and even held the interest of Rob who has the attention span of a Gnat.  When you get to the Breche you need to traverse along the ridge to the left about 20m and the couloir drops down the East face and joins into the Breche Puiseux descent.  After skiing the Couloir (45degrees for 350M) we hit the upper Leschaux Glacier and found some weird but fun snow back to montenvers.  All in all a great day had by all followed by that special kind of tired and satisfied that only a day in the Mountains can bring.

Showing the line to take on the way up to the Breche. The Low point is the Col du tacul and the breche sits a bit higher on the right.

The Team on the way up the bootpack.

Rob putting in some turns near the Top, we had to downclimb into the couloir about 30-40 feet as the snow was a bit hard near the top.

Lorne Catching some air near the bottom of the couloir.

First Ski Tour of the Winter! Glacier Mort

Pistes are OK, for a bit, but I personally get feed up of them pretty soon.  I’ve been hammering about in the resort quite a lot recently trying to build up the muscles in my legs which had all but withered away since my accident.  Everything was feeling good this week and with a good snowfall behind us over the past week it was time to take things a step further.  Time to go touring!! Me and Michelle Blaydon headed up to Flegere to ski the  Glacier Mort on Pointe Alphonse Favre.  The first hike up to the Col Des Aiguille Crochues was a sweaty, busy and generally tedious experience which could have been avoided had we got there a slightly earlier.  At one point I got wiped out by a punter who decided to fall on top of me whilst I was changing from ski’s to boots becasue my knee couldn’t deal with the slippy kick turns.   Apparently it was my fault?  I think not buddy .  After the second sweaty hike we got to the top of PAV and found some great snow which lead us down to the Berard valley and on to a nice cold beer in Le Buet.  Watch out for the cliffs on the descent if you head up there to do it.  We had to hike back up 30m or so after we started to ski because we got cliffed-out following a track.

More Info here.

Should got there earlier.

Showing the way to get to Pointe Alphonse Favre photo taken from Col des Crochues.

Michelle displaying good color co-ordination and technique on the last hike up to the summit. MT Blanc in the Background.

The view from the summit down to the Berard Valley. If you look closer (Click to enlarge) you'll see a shuffle track back up. We should have taken notice of that.