High Hopes in the French Alps

The Italian Job!


Dennis just launched

So the weather this side of the mountain was pretty poor, and had been the day before, with loads of precipitation and snowfall! Yes, more snow… so much so, that it had even settled on Plaine Joux launch! so Monday was all but written off …however…  it was all looking so much better through the tunnel on the Italian side, so we decided to venture into the Aosta valley in Italy for the day, and what a day it turned out!

Absolutely gorgeous! Lovely soft wind, and complimentary thermals, gentle grassy launch areas, and a neat little bar, where Italian hospitality, pizza and gelato were very much welcomed! It almost felt like a holiday day!

There will be no doubt to where we’ll be going next time the weather is disagreeable this side of Mont Blanc and that would be Monte Bianco!!


late afternoon/early evening flying Italian style!



Dave, deciding to give up chasing the con/chem-trails, and head for the bar landing field!


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Theo… our new apprentice in preparation mode.



May 25, 2016 Posted by | Day to Day | Leave a comment

2016 Flying Season Commences!


Andrew in flight on new glider! 🙂

So it’s finally arrived, the flying season that is. Already there have been some spectacular spring flights being achieved in and around the valley, so time to get focused on flying!

We’ve got a few days ahead of somewhat dodgy weather, but then thereafter improvement,  and the flying should begin to become established. So all the local instructors are back on site now, and it’s great to meet and greet them all again!

We had more tandemonium capers suddenly turn up on launch, taking over the place, it seems they were doing a tandem pilot’s assessment test. Apparently, some of their landings left a lot to be desired though.. but hey, we all have to learn!

Unfortunately, the farmer had left his cows in the field so some of the landings may have been a tad smelly!


Tandemonium – Apparently, much more entertaining at landing! – Nice flying going on too.



May 1, 2016 Posted by | Flying, Tuition | Leave a comment

Snow Brainer!

2016-04-17T13-30-13+02-00This is the final week of eeking out what’s left of the snow, even though we’ve had a further covering! We’ve had more snow in April, than we had in December! So we battled through the rain lower down, and were transported into the snow higher up!

Ok, so the conditions were pretty appalling really, but we wanted to try out some new skis. Well, sadly they didn’t have my size, but Dennis managed to try a new pair. Unfortunately the visibility was virtually zilch, and the snow condition was ski-able,  but not really of any decent enough quality to form a valid opinion of the skis. Shame really, however all was not lost, as we managed to squeeze out a further day, where the conditions were somewhat better, and at least I managed to try a pair of skis in my size, and well… I’m sold! So even though the skiing is just about well and truly over, a couple of new pairs of skis is definitely soon to be on order!

Just a little additional note… today is the last day of Les Grands Montets opening, regardless of the excellent snow fall we’ve had! Very frustrating to see the inviting snow condition up at Le Tour, and all the chair lifts parked!

It appears that there is quite a gathering up at Les Grands Montets for  the final farewell to the winter ski season.. Sad to think that it’s time to finally put away the ski boots, makes me sad…

So that’s pretty much wrapped up our winter ski season… so here’s to the flying! And flying! yes it’s all starting to kick off!

We’ve already had some flying, and EP/CPC training, but it should start in earnest next week.. given the forecast. Midweek onward is not looking to bad, and anyway by then the alternative distraction should have all but been removed.





May 1, 2016 Posted by | Skiing | Leave a comment