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Flights booked to lhr in Jan, where in Europe to ski for a week with 2 non skiers

Discussion in 'Europe' started by TOFF, Jun 29, 2018.

  1. piolet

    piolet Better make it three Ski Pass: Gold

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    Not much in martigny
     
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  2. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    Will keep going past there pretty quick.
     
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  3. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    Im thinking maybe Zurich for a day or two, then on to Munich to visit Dachau. Wife has expressed interest in visiting a concentration camp and didnt think it was suitable when I suggested she look at out own home ;)
    Then via Paris to Assas, then back to UK.
     
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  4. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Rug up for Dachau.
    We went at the end of January. Cold enough day anyway, ice on the ground. However there’s an area there where loads of people were shot - you round the corner there and the temperature just plummets. Bone chilling is the best way I can describe it.
     
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  5. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    Or even Lucerne rather than Zurich. Thoughts if just for a day or two?
     
  6. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Stop in Interlaken and take the train up through the Eiger to the Jungfrau - it is very touristy but understandably so.
    Luzern is worth a stop as well.
     
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  7. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    Right trip is booked and itinerary is set

    31/12 Fly Mel - LHR Spend week in London doing everything English
    7/1 Fly to Geneva Catch bus straight to Chamonix for 5 nights
    12/1 Train from Chamonix to Lucern
    14/1 Train from Lucern to Munich
    17/1 Train from Munich to Salzburg
    19/1 Fly from Salzburg to London
    22/1 Fly London to Melbourne (24 hours in Manilla)

    PUMPED
     
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  8. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    Couple of Q's from those in the know.

    1. Do I have to pre book the bus from Geneva or should I be fine to just turn up? (reason I ask I see in t&c that if flight is delayed you lose your transfer if pre booked)

    2. Son turns 18 in Chamonix and thought we might ski Valle Blanche on the day weather permitting, any thoughts of chances of it being open on 10/1 (is it just weather dependent) and how to I find a guide?

    3. Wasnt going to pre purchase Eurail passes but just lob up early each day to station, is this a dangerous move?

    Thanks
     
  9. piolet

    piolet Better make it three Ski Pass: Gold

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    1/ yes defo pre-book. Check the companies, some have different booking levels/conditions
    1b/ in-laws use ezybus and rate it. No good for travelers with young kids though.

    2/ good chance
     
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  10. piolet

    piolet Better make it three Ski Pass: Gold

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    4/ Manila. I knew it all along
     
  11. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    LOL LOL
     
  12. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    How do I find a guide?
    @CarveMan
     
  13. Doonks

    Doonks Let's cook! Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    from the France or the Italian side?

    If from Cham, remember, you have to do the Arete, and then it's a 6+ hour ski. Is he good for that?
     
  14. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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  15. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    French.
    I dont think the time is the issue. Ive been told its a long blue run with bits that get a bit red so Im more concerned that he is up to the steepness.
     
  16. Doonks

    Doonks Let's cook! Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    These are excellent conditions


    A bit blowy and icy, but still good
     
  17. Doonks

    Doonks Let's cook! Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    but this one:
     
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  18. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    As long as those ropes are up Im sure he'll be fine.
    Once you put the skis on though the link that cm says its blue to red.
     
  19. Zeroz

    Zeroz A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    If he's an intermediate he'll be good. It's an experience - 2 long cable cars, views, walk the decks, glass box, arete, VB.

    The Vallee Blanche group that CM linked to will rope everyone up for the arete. Handy tip!
    If he does start a death slide to Cham 2km below, the guide will throw himself over the other side to balance the load.
     
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  20. piolet

    piolet Better make it three Ski Pass: Gold

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    Report to the compagnie des guides office the arvo before and sign up.
    Company Des Guides Of Chamonix

    190 Place de l'Église, 74400 Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, France
    +33 4 50 53 00 88 https://g.co/kgs/SbceDs

    Its more like a 2.5hr ski, not 6. Then climbing up a bunch of stairs.

    I don't think they take groups down the arete without it being prep'd (path kinda cut and rope installed) but it still is possible as a small private guided group and they'd likely short rope the boy. Depends on the kid in question but if he has any sense of adventure or that kind of spirit he will be fine, he may even love it. It'll certainly be an eye opener for him.

    Of the private guide groups I've had good experiences with chamex https://www.chamex.com but for the VB its a pretty generic thing for the guides and it mostly won't matter who you go with. Its more a lottery of being with a good group which is out of your hands. (By that I mean having someone having a freakout on the arete or way overstating their skills and delaying the skiing massively)

    I'm excited for you! Slim chance I'll be up there at the same time too mate :cheers:

    I've seen a freakout on the arete, not pretty.
     
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  21. piolet

    piolet Better make it three Ski Pass: Gold

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    And the 18yo needs to report to chambre nuef and monkey. That'll be a good start.
     
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  22. piolet

    piolet Better make it three Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yep, the skiing is easy and pleasant. Perfect for taking it all in.
    The hand ropes are good. I'm wary of being in a roped group. If you're remotely sure footed it's a hinderance imo
     
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  23. LiveToSki

    LiveToSki One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Wow - time flies!!
     
  24. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yeah.
     
  25. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    Want to meet us in Chamonix to help him celebrate?
     
  26. LiveToSki

    LiveToSki One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Just finalising our passports now... Hmmmmmmmmm
     
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  27. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Bit late on this as things have been pretty hectic at work this week, but a couple of comments.

    Has been a long time since I skied the VB. It is an amazing experience and stunning scenery. I think the boy will love it.
    Skiing is not difficult especially if you are doing the standard tourist route. Being able to ski in control is key.

    The first time in late January 1989 I just dropped into the guides office in town and spoke to some Kiwi guide about how it all worked, booked in and I got out a couple of days later with a French guide. I later found out that the Kiwi guy was actually Murray Ball who featured in the Chamonix segment of Blizzard of Aahs with Glen Plake and Scott Schmidt which was made around that time.
    Was a great day, the walk down the arrete is an experience, we did a somewhat more difficult variation from the tourist route, had some great powder first up, took a steeper option where we roped down one little section over a rock face (guide though just jumped it), some cruisy skiing amongst amazing scenery, a walk over glacier ice, then skied the trail to Les Plannards ski area and stopped for a couple of beers.

    The second time in 1994 was with a bigger group of varying abilities so we took the standard tourist route stopping at the hut for lunch on the way. The skiing is all pretty easy - the main criteria is simply being able to ski in control and when the guide says ski in my tracks on the glacier that you can do exactly that. The worst part of that trip was the ski at the end on a trail which was a mix of ice and rocks with lots of traffic.

    Early January could be a bit iffy though with snow cover on the glacier and how much it has filled in the crevasses. VB is generally more of a later season option. That will depend on the season and obviously the guides will advise on that.

    On the train travel I don't think I would bother with a rail pass. They generally work better if you are doing many long trips. These days I think you are better off just booking specific trips online. There are often some very good discounts booking online in advance. I used this quite a bit on Austrian rail https://www.oebb.at/en/ but I am sure the same would apply for others.
     
    #77 Heinz, Oct 13, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2018
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  28. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    Much appreciated, thanks
     
  29. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Chamonix for sure. For a lower key trip Courmayeur
     
  30. Kletterer

    Kletterer Thredbo Doughnut Tragic Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Never ,ever have your axe unatached to your harness and use a wrist leash.
     
  31. Kletterer

    Kletterer Thredbo Doughnut Tragic Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yeah nah. There is a fixed rope there. A double lanyard is the go. If someone in the group is a little nervous ask the guide to clip a lanyard to the fixed line. A good guide should do this for a nervous client anyway and mention if you slip under/ over the rope - i got ya.
     
  32. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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  33. piolet

    piolet Better make it three Ski Pass: Gold

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    They like to group short rope up there. Pita
     
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  34. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    I'm not a fan. I think its the control freak in me. More likely to feel stressed short roped than no rope. :mad:
    Has the boy done anything like that before @TOFF ?
     
  35. piolet

    piolet Better make it three Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yeah you get jerked around and it's harder to get footing if icy.
    Solo in good condition you just stroll down, crampons if dicey.
     
  36. Kletterer

    Kletterer Thredbo Doughnut Tragic Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    A bit of flat footing practice in crampons could be helpful.
     
  37. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    Na, nothing like it.
    Going to have a look at the videos posted here with him tonight.
     
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  38. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    The good thing is you have plenty of time to have a play before you go if you decide its a go.
    Take him up into the mountains one weekend soon before all the snow melts, whack him into crampons and rope him close to you so he gets the feel.
     
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  39. Kletterer

    Kletterer Thredbo Doughnut Tragic Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    He will be fine and will want to do it every year after that. If there is still anxiety when you get there a previous day outing with the same guide might help establish a trust factor.
     
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  40. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    He just watched the videos on simply said 'awesome'
     
  41. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    For trains I've been looking here and can book in aud https://www.raileurope.com.au
     
  42. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    That site looks ok especially as a one stop shop, but still worth checking the local rail websites as they may have better discounts.
    Also, while I certainly much prefer rail travel there are bus companies doing quite good fares. I have used this one a couple of times. https://global.flixbus.com/
    The good thing about these is that since they have come in with their cheap fares the rail lines have started offering some quite good discounted fares to compete.
     
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  43. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    VB - i just turned up and got a guide on the day, but I think better to book a few days in advance if you can as we had to wait a while and was dependent on getting a group together. Guide station is at the bottom of the lift and can hook there.

    Agree a solid intermediate is fine, but having experience in off piste conditions is necessary as it’s obviously not groomed. One part was quite mougaly and steep one of the times I did it. Also the end part can be a bit sketchy depending on conditions.

    The top roped bit kind of looks worse then it is, but obviously need to be careful.
     
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  44. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Forgot to mention this site for looking at transport options. Never used it to book tickets though. https://www.rome2rio.com/
     
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  45. Zeroz

    Zeroz A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    The most important thing? Wait for a clear or clear-ish day. If cloudy, delay, delay.
    The views are the experience.
     
  46. Elinor

    Elinor Hard Yards Ski Pass: Gold

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    I agree!
     
  47. Apresski

    Apresski Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Just saw on FB that Australians no longer have to go through the 'aliens' queue to go through passport control......must be Brexit.....
    https://www.9news.com.au/2018/10/30...ng-queues-at-london-airport?ocid=Social-9News
     
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  48. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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