December Snow Report
Coming home to Chamonix from Thailand first week in December we had to readjust quickly into ski mode – it was dumping hard and the rocks were buried at a rapid pace after a warm and dry autumn in Chamonix. Since it started it never really stopped. The cold storms with heavy snowfalls have been releasing each other, with only single clear and warms day in-between them. The result was the whitest Christmas we have seen in a very long time in the Chamonix valley.
As 2012 has just arrived we are excited and confident that 2012 will be a BIG winter in the Alps. We aim to produce a monthly ski report capturing the recent conditions and happy moments through out the winter, so stay tuned!
This was our December 2011. The pre-season skiing took place mostly in Chamonix, but also a short visit to St Anton. Enjoy and be inspired if you missed it, remember if you were here…
December 2011 – Powder Skiing
…and get out there if you now if you can. New Years Day will be another clear powder day that cannot be missed, no matter how late you go to bed!
Happy New Year from Mountain Spirit Guides Team!
January 2012 – Powder Skiing and Ski Touring
Second episode of our monthly updates on Winter 2012, featuring again the off-piste skiing in Chamonix.
To summarize skiing conditions in Chamonix the last 4 weeks: A few seriously snow-loading storms with up to one week high pressures in-between, allowed for a lot of powder skiing off the lifts as well as a good start of the ski touring season.
The general snow cover is better then ever and we especially enjoy all the skiing on the lower half of the mountains down to the valley floor, exploring new variations that are seldom skiable but now full of fluffy snow on a thick base.
However, we must admit that the camera came out almost exclusively on sunny days…enjoy the result!
January Snow Report
First week of 2012 it was still snowing almost every day with good melting temperatures in-between the storms. Often the dumps started with rain in lower altitudes and strong winds up high. Getting to ski all the favorite shutes down to the valley floor that were never skiable last winter added lots of interesting options also for the snowy days.
A sunny period in mid-January got us started on the ski touring training… Fun skiing in not so high altitude, such as ski touring in the Aiguilles Rouges and from Brevent and Le Tour, offered the most and best snow.
During 20-21 Jan, again it fell enormous amounts of snow, and most of the Chamonix lifts remained closed for 2 days. Until blue skies opened up the full potential of the high mountains, the tree skiing on Grands Montets and Brevent was the saviour that delivered plenty of face shots. Topping this with some moderate snow falls and cold temperatures during the last days of Jan, the snow was finally perfect (and in perfect amounts) for powder skiing on big, open slopes.
The out-look for February: it looks cold!