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~ Saturday 19th March 2011

Our Monta Rosa plans were scuppered by bad weather - plan B saw us heading to the Aiguilles Rouges hut, skinning across heather and grass in thick cloud. All very Cairngorm. Higher up the snow was better and after a quick tea in the hut we boldly headed up into the clouds again, eventually reaching the Col de Vouasson. There was some great snow...but awful visibility. An excellent meal and comfy night - we were the only people in the hut. 

Plenty of snow here

Next day the weather was worse...tricky route finding across to the Vallon des Ignes was rewarded by and excellent ski as we dropped out of the cloud, fresh tracks in good snow down a deserted valley. Well worth the effort. 

Telemark turns in powder

Beneath les Ignes

Excited by Friday's blue skies  we headed up the Pigne d'Arolla. At the col des Vignettes it became obvious that the endless heliskiers plus the wind and sun had left some dubious snow on the Pigne, so we went for plan B...col de l'Eveque and the Arolla glacier. This was a great journey - we saw no-one from the Vignettes to Arolla. Tough conditions past the Eveque with strong NW wind led eventually to perfect powder beneath Mont Collon. 

Col de L'Eveque