March has been an incredibly busy month with me whizzing from resorts in Austria to Switzerland to Austria again and back to France and Chamonix. My first port of call was Saalbach, where I had the former GB ski racer and Ski Sunday presenter, Graham Bell as my guide to the resort, and who also gave me a few useful tips to improve my carving, amongst other things…. you can read about that HERE. I’ve also written about the resort itself in a piece for the Ski Club of Great Britain’s magazine, Ski and Board which I will put online as soon as it’s out.
After a brief few days back in Chamonix it was back out to Verbier for a trip which you can read about HEREin my blog for the Ski Club of Great Britain and soon in Zest magazine. A few days later I headed to Crans Montana for the Caprices festival and the Momentum City Ski Championships.
Here I carried out interviews for Verbier Mountain Radio and was lucky enough to ski with and chat to the likes of the President of the Ski Club of Great Britain and BBC Security Correspondent, Frank Gardner and Giles Long, a former Paralympic gold medal winning swimmer. You can hear those interviews on my SoundCloud page, HERE and read about my Crans Montana trip HERE .
Then a 6 hour+ train ride and it was back to one of my favourite resorts, Ischgl in Austria. I first skied in Ischgl in 2010 when I began the ski writing – and have some great memories.
I’m glad to say this time round it didn’t disappoint, with the usual mix of seemingly endless pistes, the stunning ‘duty free’ run, the awesome apres- ski- with my particular favourite, ”Nikis Stadl.’
I also found out that next season, Ischgl will become the biggest ski resort in Austria when 2 new lifts open up. Exciting times! Again, you can read about this soon in my Ski Club blog and then in Zest magazine.
But it didn’t stop there- when I returned to Chamonix I joined the MissionWOW ladies for a girls only introduction to Ski Touring over in Courmayeur. We were back in the Bonatti Hut which I’d stayed in previously to witness the epic feat that is the Tor des Geants. I learned plenty that weekend and am ready to take on a few more challenges in Chamonix now. Read about the MissionWOW touring weekend HERE.
A few days later I hooked up with George Taylor who also lives in Chamonix and I met through friends from the British Mountaineering Council. George is organising the Chamonix Mountain festival this June which should be a great event if you’re into mountaineering and climbing etc. I joined him and some of friends on a variant of the Envers du Plan route on the Vallee Blanche. We couldn’t have asked for a better day really- warm, without a cloud in the sky.
I was mildly amused however, when later that afternoon, George reemerged at Brevent, modelling some sort of 80′s, black skinny jean, punk look, and spent the afternoon skiing backwards and throwing 180′s down the slope. Obviously piste skiing not interesting enough for him without the imminent danger of a falling serac to liven things up…. More about that in my Ski club blog HERE soon.
At the Geant icefall
To top off the month and celebrate Easter weekend, I headed to Avoriaz where my friend Samantha Cope, aka,Snow Angel had organsied the Snowangel Easter Weekender. Again more blue skies and T shirt skiing and a great time in the Portes du Soleil- thanks to Pierre & Vacances, who hosted me. More about that in my Ski Club blog coming soon….
But as the snow begins to melt, I’m feeling its time to slow down and get fit again. I’ve no excuse to not go running and in less than 2 months I’ll be off to Everest Base Camp with the Adventure Company for their 60th Anniversary Trek, marking Hilary and Tenzing’s successful Summit of Everest. So its time to strap those skins on and get climbing……