Saturday, 8 March 2014

Aiguille de la Perseverance S Couloir

The good weather has finally hit Cham and it looks from the forecast like it's here to stay so finding good skiing hasn't been quite as easy as it was in February when there was just powder everywhere. Things are complicated to say the least and there are currently numerous things to consider avalanche wise, from wet snow slides in the sun through to the persistent weak layer on non-glaciated, north facing slopes and countless other things in between. 

With all that in mind, Tom and I figured that if we moved quickly and skied something in the sun, we could find some nice soft snow but be gone before it got dodgy in the afternoon heat. With no firm plan we shot across to Lac Blanc and after a quick look at the options we went for the S couloir of the Aiguille de la Perseverance. 

The slog up was tough and the final bootpack to the col was savage in the heat, but it beat doing the same line in summer (report here). 

The view from the bootpack.

Me getting slow cooked on the bootpack. I should add that fashion is a matter of taste, and I like that hat.

Once at the top we quickly stuck our skis on and got going. The snow was pretty heavy in places but also fun and rippable in others, so not a bad result overall. 

Me at the top of the ski, about to go. Photo Tom Moores.

Me a few turns in. Photo Tom Moores.

The line is the slope on the left, immediately left of the big peak in the middle. I photoshopped this shot as much as I could so you can just about see our tracks lower down. 

Conditions right now are frankly a bit weird, with some snow having transformed in the sun but other stuff remaining light and powdery - I've been struggling to get a handle on conditions and it almost seems slightly random. When trying to come up with a plan for tomorrow we went round in circles and discussed about 10 different options before finally settling on something. 
Whether it will be any good is anyone's guess but stay tuned!