With the stunning weather at the moment, not freezing on the lifts and not flying around to keep the blood moving, having the lovely tempreture a blue skys that give you the freedom of taking your time leisurely enjoying the day I have been experimenting with some new things.
I am snowboarder first (keep quite snowboard haters we are not all bad), you will also catch me trying to tame the black mogul fields on a set of skis.
So what to try? In previous blogs I have posted about ice climbing, just before this post I regailed my day on a snowscoot, what else is there? Telemarking
Telemarking is a form of Nordic Skiing using boots that are flexible at the ball of your foot and bindings which keep your toes flat to the ski but which leaves the heel free to lift. You can still turn the ski as you would Alpine skis, all be it without the ablility to kick your heals round very sharply as some people do.
It’s not the similarities to alpine skiing I was looking for when I hired a pair of telemark skis, it was the differences. From the free raising heel you gain the ability to turn the ski by stepping forward with one ski, leaving the second ski behind, which brings you into a lunge. The technique is pretty hard but once you get there it feels and looks very graceful.
All in all it was great to try something new, its an amazing leg workout and I could swear my alpine skiing technique has improved from my attempts at this varation of skiing.
Please click the link below to see a short clip from my day on telemarks
telemarking < = =
What is a snowscoot? You may have seen a contraption flying down the piste somewhat resembling a bike, somewhat resembling a snowboard, mounted by a terrifed looking person with the appearence of not being quite in full control trying not to kill himself and everything around them… well one of them people was myself last week around Les Coches.
The first paragraph sums up my exeperience of snow scooting for maybe the first run but as I disembarked the second lift of the day and strange feeling of familiarity with this odd looking pile of metal and fun lead to one of the funnest days all season. Although they can look scary with some practice you have surprisingly good control of the heavy looking thing.
I would not go as far as saying it was an easy day, there was alot of hard work that went into controling the snowscoot and learning how to deal with the varying terrains found within resort. After prevailing and sticking it out despite a few big crashes by the end of day I fealt a real sense of accomplishment.
Please click below to see a short video from the day.
snowscoot < = =
If you haven’t got anything planned yet for your Easter holidays, then why not make the most of the break with a ski trip to La Plagne with Ice and Fire?
Easter is a great time to travel with children, especially those still learning, as the warmer weather makes everything easier. Compared with the other school holiday weeks it is also significantly quieter making it a great choice for families.
This year La Plagne are also running some great family friendly events around the resort to celebrate the Easter holidays – check out the Sublicimes blog here
Sunday 29th March – 5th April, Chalet Bluebell, £399 per adult and £299 per child fully catered
Sunday 5th – 12th April, Chalet Genepi, £399 per adult and £299 per child fully catered
Sunday 12th – 19th April, Chalet Bon Vie, £299 per person fully catered
In addition to these great savings, there is a “kids ski free” lift pass offer this week meaning that when you reserve two adult Paradiski passes you get one child Paradiski pass free of charge. Read more here
Tempted? Why not get in touch today for more information click here
Hi from Julia and Dave, chalet hosts in Bluebell. Here’s just a quick blog of some fun skiing we’ve had recently.
Julia: Tuesday I decided to book myself into a session with Reflex Ski school, our local partner. Previously in the season I had had a private lesson with Reflex and it has helped me a lot to just be aware of my technique and how just those little ‘tweaks’ can help skiing become much more enjoyable. My aim this season was to be able to ski moguls better and I have certainly found the Reflex tuition invaluable.
The session this week was on ‘freestyle’ which is something I hadn’t really tried before, so I thought I’d give it a go Katia put us through our paces with learning to ski backwards (*still to be mastered!), using a small lip on the piste to initiate a 180 jump, and we had a go on the snow park. It was a lot of fun and Katia was very patient with my nervous attempts at the 180 ( more like a 80, squeaking and falling in a heap)…I at least provided some entertainment for the nearby button lift queue.
On Wednesday Dave and I took to one of our favourite areas: that ‘little square on the piste map’ aka Champagny. The run down to Champagny is fantastic from the top of the Verdons or Grand Rochette, you can link together several pistes such as the Petit Rochette and Geisha blues if you want to have a long breathtaking run. We particularly like the Bois red run, which winds it’s way down through the forest with stunning views of the mountains opposite. What always strikes me on this run is the peace and quiet, it really does feel like you have the mountain to yourself!
The other great run down to Champagny is the seemingly never-ending Mont de la Guerre red. It’s a bit elusive because of the aspect, as the sun does melt patches of it quite rapidly, but it’s worth looking out for.
Once you are in Champagny, why not stop for a spot of lunch? A short walk brings you to a pretty square with shops and restaurants. Now it is spring, and the sun is nice and warm, it is definitely good for a nice ice cream stop
Back up the Champagny bubble and the Verdons Sud, and you have a choice of blues, reds and maybe even les Bosses black- a good place to practise your post-ice cream mogul skiing. Soft and slightly slushy bumps in warm sun, so no worries about catching an icy edge!
Back up the Verdons and the Mercedes black has to be tried- again a good little bumps challenge and not too long. Or just take a red or blue to meet it at the bottom. Then a quick cruise back to Plagne centre and the day is done!
A few weeks ago me and one of the other employees here at ice and fire decided to try something new.
Early on the wednesday morning we got up and traveled to Peisey Nancroix to meet our guide for the day Olivier.
Olivier walked us half an hour up the ski nordic area to the base of cascade du mone where we spent the rest of the day learning to use ice axes, crampons and ice screws to ascend the ice fall.
The whole expereince was incredible and I would recomend it to anyone. Since returning home after that day all I can think of is the next time I will get to have a go. Click the link below to see some clips of our day
ice climbing < = = see the video here