17/12/11: Only Option

Well, it snowed most of yesterday (Friday) afternoon and kept going overnight. We probably had a strong 25cm here at valley level by this morning, and we woke up with the best intentions of going to Courmayeur.

A quick call to someone over there scuppered that; they'd closed the Dolonne lift, which meant a mission getting up the main town centre cable car. And the tunnel would have been a long wait. We bailed and checked out the openings for Chamonix, which looked equally bleak, until we saw the Les Houches opening light flick suddenly onto 'green'. We loaded the car and headed down there.

Well, I don't know about a snowpocalypse, but there was a lot of snow on Les Houches today. Probably 60cm average with more in places. We didn't touch the bottom for most of the morning. Light, fluffy and faceshotty. The Prarion trees were on, and there were puffy pillow lines all over the place. A great day.

Everything else in Chamonix was shut, due to high wind and high avalanche risk. I expect the new snow will settle a bit over the next 12 hours if the winds don't get up too much, which means a decent Sunday with lots of skiing options. If you're up the mountain tomorrow, visibility isn't going to be that great, so perhaps stick to Les Houches or even the rocky Brévent/Flégère side which will have lots of granite showing and thus points of reference. Otherwise, wait for Monday which will see clearing and good skiing at Le Tour or Grands Montets.

trenches in Les Houches this morning

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