Sur la piste: Skiing the French Alps

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We should really go somewhere new. We keep meaning to make plans. To explore new territory. To branch out. But we can’t seem to stay away from Chamonix-Mont Blanc.

The obsession began Christmas 2014. Before Chamonix I had never skied on a mountain that required a practically vertical gondola to get there. (Every place I had skied I could get up and down the entire mountain in 10 minutes!) The first time I boarded that gondola my knees were knocking and my palms were perspiring. I was completely blown away by its size and vastness. I realize we’re talking about the Alps here, but I was overwhelmed. We’re supposed to ski down this? I thought while plotting my escape. I was relieved to discover I’d only be skiing on the top 20% of those beautiful, treacherous peaks and riding the gondola down.

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Since 2014 we’ve visited Chamonix four more times–most recently over the weekend–and the obsession has only deepened. Each time, we try to decide between returning to favorite slopes and exploring new ones. It is hard to give up a good thing.

On Monday we visited an entirely new mountain in Chamonix and found some of the most breathtaking panoramas we’ve seen yet. It took us one gondola, three chair lifts and a rope tow to summit the top. It was so worth it–look at that view!

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This was taken where I skied off-piste for the first time. It’s not something I thought I’d ever try since I’m such a cautious skier, but I’d been feeling good all weekend. No falls, no broken bones…why not?

When I finally got a look at what I’d agreed to, I thought no way jose.

But what are my options? Take off my skis and hike down a few thousand meters? I gave myself a pep talk, turned my skis downhill and didn’t look back. What a rush! And I’ve been practically floating on confidence since.

20160216_123454.jpgI hope you’re pushing your boundaries this week…but for now, a few links:

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There are California girls and there are Bakersfield girls. I am the latter.

3 thoughts on “Sur la piste: Skiing the French Alps

  1. Paige,

    These are beautiful. Brings back memories of skiing in the Rockies. Absolutely breathtaking. No need to explore any new mountains with those so close! Thanks. BB

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