Couloir Cosmique Wake Up Call - Chamonix Diaries Part 1
This post has 12 photos and 0 videos. Click any thumbnail to start »
The week we left Whistler for Chamonix, France, the biggest snow storm of the season annihilated Whistler with powder day after powder day after powder day, and it's still going. It's safe to say I was almost starting to doubt my decision, leaving a snowy place like that for a place that hadn't seen snowfall in 4+ weeks.
But then I woke up, walked in my flip flops to a tram that boosted me more than 9000ft above the valley in 20 minutes, and skied a line right off the lift that would be a worthy objective for an entire season back home. And it was my first day. So um, yep, I think I'm pretty comfortable with that decision after all!
There's a reason Chamonix is hailed as a mecca for so many 'extreminator' sports... there's just no other place quite like it on earth. For ski mountaineers, speed flyers, alpine climbers, paragliders and the like, I'm not really sure why you'd hang out anywhere else. Quote of the day, day one, at the top of the Aiguille du Midi... "Hey what happened to that Evan guy who was with us". Reply... "Oh he's flying down." Oh right of course, WTF?! Only in Chamonix does a quiet, polite guy who you rode the tram with just sneak off without saying bye, then proceed to speed fly off the North Face of the Aiguille du Midi.
Meanwhile we had a date with our first Chamonix classic, the Cosmique Couloir. With a few thousand feet of couloir below us and snow that hadn't been freshened up in over a month, I was kinda wishing I could fly away too.
A few rappels later, we hacked our way in true 1990's style down the hardpark snow in the upper couloir, then opened it up the rest of the way down to the glacier. And like that, we'd kicked off my Chamonix trip with about as stellar a line as I could have hoped for. Safe and sound.
Will we get a gem like that every day? Time will tell. But judging by the conditions we're going to have to get pretty creative. The good news is there's more resorts, lifts, and vert within a stones throw from here than in all of Canada combined (ok I'm wingin' it here), so I'm sure there's plenty more good times lurking around the next corner.
You can post a blog like this too - Simply create an account and get posting!