Getting a text wake up at 7am is never good, Unless its from Pete and it says “Do you fancy the Rond?”. I was not planning on skiing this morning but it was clear and conditions looked good so I thought it would be good to get up there and enjoy the mountain.
Getting to the Midi for 7:50 and Pete was queuing for tickets. After I saw he had a couple of number 12’s I whipped out a couple of spare number 9’s from last week! First Bin! Getting crammed in with a couple of guided groups and the French Army was good fun and we were first down the arete. Breaking the trail around to the Rond we started down the upper slopes only to find 6-8inches of fresh snow, that sluffed, on a super firm/icy base. After 20m of dodgy side slipping I decided that with no edges on my skis I would be better down climbing, so after a couple of hair raising moments on the transition I had my crampons on and began the down climb. Pete carried on down just below me with his nice sharp edges then I put my skis back on about 50m above the exit couloir.
Despite being first to the Rond we had been overtaken by 3 people by the time we reached the exit couloir. They set off down the exit in what looked like deep cold snow, and by the time we combat skied our way through the rocks we confirmed that it was!
With only 3 tracks down the exit we had lots of fresh and then upon the exit we could see that they had put the traverse to the Para face in for us. This was the first time for me down the west side of the midi this year and after doing it with Tom Grant last year I remembered how good this face was. Huge open fields of nice boot deep powder and no-one else around! Finishing back at the Midi at 12:30 it had taken 3 hours for the descent, Straight home and on a bus to Geneva, now very tired at work! Thanks for a fun morning Pete and I need to go and sharpen my edges, Local CHX i’m looking your way!
Click Here to read what pete had to say about our day up the mountain, also he has a pretty cool short film about the Rond.
This one was for Dave. An amazing guy who will be greatly missed by many. Thoughts go out to his Family and all those that were lucky enough to ski, drink or party with him.
Please read Lornes write up.