Category Archives: skiing

Crowds on the Courtes North-East, 29/04/16

Sweating, distracted, my thoughts wandering, I’m suddenly brought back into the here-and-now by the forceful impact of a few small-but-dense chunks of snow on my right thigh in mid-step, and an instant before glancing upwards to see if there’s anything … Continue reading

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North Face of the Tour Ronde, 28/04/16

The north face of the Tour Ronde is, for a lot of mountaineers, their first proper north face route. With around 350m of difficulties it isn’t very big, and the climbing, with just two pitches of grade 4 ice in … Continue reading

Posted in Aiguille du Midi, Black Crows, skiing, video | 2 Comments

Col du Plan north face, 20/04/16

Fear, I think, is one of the more useful emotions we have at our disposal. Don’t get me wrong, happiness is great, it’s absolutely smashing, and it’s definitely the preferred state of mind to while away the hours with, but … Continue reading

Posted in Aiguille du Midi, Black Crows, Plan d'Aiguille, skiing | 2 Comments

Two Days on the Midi: Cosmiques, Rond, Passerelle, West

Cosmiques Couloir, 18/04/16 Charlie, Dan, Gareth making their way to the Cosmiques in fresh snow Me rappelling into the Cosmiques, photo by Dan Swirling clouds with the occasional tiny patch of blue. A light on-off drizzle in town. There are … Continue reading

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A Cluster of Early-season Ski Tours

It’s been a funny old start to this season. We had some sudden, short-lived snow in early October, but summer carried on until the very end of November, then autumn lasted two days, and in the space of 48 hours … Continue reading

Posted in Aiguilles Rouges, dogs, skiing, video, Volkl Nunataqs | 2 Comments

Ski Running: Col du Belvedere, 29/09/15

Once again, I am witness to one of my favourite scenes of Chamonix: the Aiguilles Rouges coming to life under a rising sun, from dark to dawn to daylight. The wind blowing across the mouth of the light aluminium ice … Continue reading

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Trail Running: Crochues-Berard, and other short stories

Bathed in the milky glow of dawn, the forest around me is silent except for the rhythmic clatter-and-crunch of the built-in spikes under my running shoes as they scrape their way over rock and gravel. An annoying soundtrack this early … Continue reading

Posted in Aiguille du Midi, Aiguilles Rouges, dogs, Plan d'Aiguille, running, skiing, video, Volkl Nunataqs | 7 Comments

Combe du Pouce, 13/03/15

On Friday 13th March, Dan Fitzgerald and I went on an exhausting day out in the Aiguilles Rouges – up the Gliere, down the Combe du Pouce, up to the Keyhole, down the Berard valley, beer in Buet. We battled … Continue reading

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Whoops, 26/12/14

Higher up in the couloir but out of sight behind a rocky constriction, Joel hears the scream bouncing off the steep walls of the Rectiligne and, I assume, my enthusiastic cries of “cunt!” and “stop stop stop…” Around seventy metres … Continue reading

Posted in Grand Montets, skiing, Volkl Nunataqs | 1 Comment

Brèche 3159, 22/12/14

After six months of skipping around with nothing heavier than a windproof and a few energy gels in my backpack, I was keen to consolidate whatever gains my summer of trail running has given me by hauling some proper weight … Continue reading

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