Col De Coux

So, I guess its been almost a year since I’ve posted on here. What better way to get back into it than a quick post about an adventure in the vein of the entire of the last 12 months. I’ll do some back dated posts as I get time but for now…
The snow has started to arrive in Villars. After an early dump before October half term I got excited and have had my skis waxed and edged for weeks waiting for it to get skiiable. After a couple of forays up to the Grand Chamossaire last Thursday and Friday the weekend (Monday+Tuesday) came and it was time to get the skins out for a proper one.
The Col de Coux is on the French/Swiss border and at 1900m was slightly below the avalanche serious danger line of 2000m. It was sheltered on the way in and so deemed safe enough. The skin up was mainly spent on thin snow on the road, and once we’d left that some kind soul had put a track in for us. As we came up towards the Col the sun blasted through the clouds creating some amazing shadows and a great excuse for a break to take photos. We sheltered behind the old border control building to snaffle down some sandwiches before dumping the skins in the bags and psyching ourselves up to ignore the deafening saddness of ski base over rock.
Much to our surprise the first pitch was glorious. I went off line a bit and found my first steep and deep powder line of the year (hopefully many more to come!) and felt some of last seasons confidence returning. After that first happy flow we had to negotiate a boulder field, which was less than inspiring and then it was practicing the short turns and narrow snowplough as we careered down the road on ice and melting slush. One brief interlude came as I attempted to ski down a rather grassy looking snow slope, it was good practice of jumpturns, but my edges got rather muddy!
Once back at the car it was high fives all round and down to Manor for a cuppa and back to school for an afternoon nap!

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photo credit to Kelly Hillyer

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