Preseason Powder Hunting

With the first snowfall of the season kicking things off in mid November its been a crazy busy period searching for powder stashes. The stable snow conditions have allowed me to go and explore some new areas and revisit some that were long forgotten years ago. The biggest challenge has been finding motivated partners and I’ve already racked up 50K vertical touring metres this autumn and 162 ski days for the year. Luckily I have a few trusted partners available on different days so I’m not always on my own. The highlight was finding 3 couloirs that don’t feature in any of my guidebooks which were filled with primo pow. I’ve also spotted a couple of cool lines which should be good to go once we get some more snow.
DSC01095 DSC01097 DSC01100 DSC01103 DSC01106 DSC01110 DSC01112 DSC01119 DSC01122 DSC01123 DSC01131 DSC01159 DSC01165 DSC01172 DSC01177 DSC01184 DSC01198 DSC01214 DSC01218 DSC01239 DSC01240 DSC01251DSC01755
DSC01254 DSC01256DSC01769-2DSC01775-2DSC01789-2 DSC01261 DSC01267 DSC01272 DSC01275DSC01803-2DSC01822-2DSC01841-2DSC01858-2DSC01878-2DSC01913-2DSC01916-2DSC01920-2DSC01922-2DSC01941-2 DSC01279 DSC01299 DSC01310 DSC01319 DSC01321 DSC01325 DSC01337 DSC01348 DSC01377 DSC01382 DSC01385 DSC01397 DSC01404 DSC01407 DSC01419 DSC01423 DSC01426 DSC01430 DSC01437 DSC01438 DSC01451 DSC01454 DSC01477 DSC01481 DSC01483 DSC01487 DSC01492 DSC01494 DSC01499 DSC01505 DSC01519 DSC01545 DSC01550 DSC01553 DSC01557 DSC01586 DSC01589 DSC01602 DSC01820










Bonne Etique – Trident

A fine day out with my buddy Davide de Masi on impeccable granite cracks last month. Definitely some of the best rock I’ve been on in the massif and I’m inspired to go back and climb the ‘Untouchables’ pitch next year when I am rock fit.
Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-20Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-21Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-3 Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-6 Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-8 Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-11 Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-12 Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-15 Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-16 Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-17 Bonne Etique Ross Hewitt_-18

Tour Ronde North Face

My plan to go do West Couloir Integral was scrapped as soon as the Midi announced they were opening late. Being Sunday there was gong to be a lot of attention on the North Face from those on their day off work so we changed to touring kit and headed off to Cirque Maudit for some tranquility and to see what looked good. Tour Ronde looked pretty good so we headed there.

The day wasn’t without a few challenges; Bird must have dreamt he could actually fly so he left his axes at home, my crampon bail snapped at the shrund and Minna had to get there on alpine day wreckers (alpine trekkers). Somehow we made it!

The last time I did this we rapped between the faces so it was a good adventure to take the skier’s left line down the face through the mixed ground. Once again I had the pleasure to ski with Minna Riihimaki and Bird Early.

Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-31

The face looking good on the left of the photo. Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-44

A choucas came to visit us as we climbed then this halo appeared. Minna and Bird enjoying good climbing conditions in the Petit Gerva.Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-50 Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-59

Screen Shot 2013-06-04 at 19.11.52

In the starting gate.Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-83 Minna heading off down the upper face.

Screen Shot 2013-06-04 at 19.14.52Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-89

Bird arcing out some turns in the powder.Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-107

Minna in the pow then finding some firm snow.Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-109 Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-113 Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-135 Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-143 Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-152

Kaaw, kaaw – Bird in flight.Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-161

Bird at the end of the rocky centre section with Minna sidestepping past the rocks.Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-162 Tour Ronde North Face Black Crows Bird Minna Rihiimaki-167

Into GS mode on the lower face. Screen Shot 2013-06-04 at 20.29.24My POV with sluff chasing my tails.