Thursday, 30 June 2016

So you want cheap* gear....

*Cheap (adjective) costing little money or less than is usual or expected
The gear that we require for alpine climbing and backcountry skiing is expensive. But does it need to be? Before I go into detail and suggesting ways in which you can save money on your next purchase, take a minute to really decide whether you need to buy it in the first place. That is the first step in saving money: Here are 11 more...

Sunday, 12 June 2016

Impeding Hitler’s endeavour to capture Mont Blanc – The battle of the Vallée Blanche

A small, conspicuous metal gate is all that guards the high mountains above Chamonix from the hordes of Japanese tourists, eager to capture a glimpse of Western Europe’s highest mountain through the eyes of a lens. Without this selfless guardian, the Col du Midi would be a sea of Hello Kitty trainers, SuperDry jackets and more thumbs up than a picture of Kim Kardashian’s breakfast on Facebook. That is assuming they manage to make it down the ridge! Yet, 71 years ago the scene from the Aiguille du Midi was of a darker nature. Aspirant guides took on the physical form of Terminus to Mont Blanc. Their presence was not to guard against a few harmless tourists, but to keep Mont Blanc from the hands of a growing evil, to keep the Swastika from ever desecrating the summit.

Saturday, 11 June 2016

Midi to Helbronner, a revised adventure...

How many times do you visit a single ski resort? Once? Twice? Return every season? I have visited a fair few resorts in my 2 years of skiing, but there is one that I keep returning to, with out fail: Chamonix.

But why?