Tuesday 7 April 2015. Les Contamines, France.
The temperatures are rising, the sun is shining and most of the skiing tourists are on their way home. It sounded like a good day to take to the slopes. Where to go? For us, there was only one choice: Les Contamines. We need some good snow – so a high resort is required. Chamonix and Flaine are possibilities but still too many people at Chamonix, and Flaine suffers from rocks once the snow starts to get thin. So Les Contamines it is – again!
We managed to get to the car park not long after 10am, and were surprised that the snow was still hard even with the cloudless sunny skies. And after a while we were skiing down our favourite pistes wondering where everyone was – sometimes there were no other skiers in sight! Fantastic!
At the highest point in the resort you can look back down the chairlift and across to the summit of Mt Blanc and the views in the other direction are equally awe-inspiring. There’s something very special about being in the mountains at times like this. The sun is shining, the views are tremendous and there are few people around – it’s easy to be impressed with the beauty of nature. And in the mountains, that’s truly humbling.
So how long dare we stay out on the slopes, what time is the last lift, can we still have our regular coffee stop on the deck chairs in the sunshine, how long will our legs continue to function without that “burn” becoming too much? So many questions to ponder as we revel in the great skiing on snow that is still in good condition even after the day’s sunshine. One more run or two? We settle on one to ensure we don’t get stranded on the pistes. And we can ski back down to the car from our coffee stop even if the lifts have stopped.
The piste-bashing crew are enjoying their drinks on our sunny terrace as they prepare for the start of their shift – finishing around midnight! But our time is over on the slopes for today. One last picture and we can still ski down to catch the lift before it closes.
Back at the car close to 5pm – our longest and best day’s skiing of the year. It’s been a good ski season, and now that it’s close to the end we’re going to miss it!