Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Glacier Rond, Valle Blanche and a Ice cave!
The weather has been tough in Chamonix, but finally on Tuesday the sun came back! We knew everyone would be in a frenzy, because it was the first time that we had seen the sun in 8 days! It was Brendan and Travers last day in Chamonix, so we wanted to make it a good day. We loaded the Agui Di Midi at around 10 am hoping to be a little behind the crowds. Our plan was to try and ski the Cosmique Couloir or the Glacier Rond into the Exit couloir. As we came out of the clouds at the mid station we knew it was a possibility. It was bluebird and a beautiful powder day! We walked the snow/ice stairs down off the Agui and skied down to the Cosmique there were a few parties still rapping, it looked like a good adventure, but not as much skiing. We decided to ski the Rond, because it involved no rappeling and we could get more bang for our buck! as we traversed in to the top of the glacier it was a perfect 500 feet of 45 to 50 degree slope with powder on ice above serious exposure. Pretty exciting, this was definitely a no fall zone! As I made my first turn I wished I had sharpened my skis!!! The snow was awesome, but you were not totally sure when you were going to hit ice. We traversed left toward the exit couloir and as I looked down I could not belive my eyes, a 40 to 45 degree couloir that looked like it went on for forever! We had one more crux and that was getting into the couloir it was again an icy ramp, but not above as much exposure besides going down the entire couloir! Yikes! We all made it through the crux nice and easy and were greeted by pure bliss of powder for about 1500 feet. Then a nice traverse with the glacier and Mont Blanc to our left! We hopped back on the mid station tram and did a great run on the Valle Blanche to the ice cave and then to the Mer de Glace train right back to our aparment! What an amazing day, I just wish the weather would hold so I could have more amazing adventures!! Keeping my fingers crossed!