Dwight Peck's personal website

Les Echadex in a bouyant mood, 2008

Still bringing in the New Year

You may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.

The snow's been crap since New Year's, but now we've got a new couple of inches to make everything sparkle in the sunlight. 3 February 2008.

Les Echadex

An inauspicious start above Marchissy, as Dr Pirri gets lost in a thicket, and unwisely we follow him there.
We don't normally do trails. Just thickets.

Well, that's over. We resume.

We've been plodding northeastward along a level forestry track at 1230m at the foot of the cliffy things called "Le Caux". We've always wanted to find out where this road goes to, and today we shall.

But as Dr Pirri discovers, it doesn't go anywhere. A dead end. What now?

Now, up.

That was good.

Now what?

Astonishing snowy forests, at about 1330m.

Dr Pirri pursuing another forestry track probably northwards (hard to tell at this point), ready for anything

Still another old forestry track in the plantation forest, not on the map, at about 1360m. All virgin snow.

Almost ten minutes squandered as Dr Pirri tried to remember the title of a J.G. Ballard novel that he'd been recounting in animated terms. No luck. Horrible to watch.

Turned out the title was "The Crystal World". We've reached a level meadow leading from Les Echadex through the forest over to Petit Prés de Rolle, and there's already a skiers' track on it. Although it's perfectly natural that someone should have been here before us since the last snow, nonetheless we feel a little bit . . . violated.

But it's possible to carry this thing about "virgin snow" too far. Being the "seconds" here is not so bad really.

We're headed over towards Les Echadex, Dr Pirri leading as usual (I've got the only camera).

Storming up the ridge, extremely briskly, with Les Echadex on the far side of it

-- Are you coming? Or what?

Zany little animal tracks all over the place up here -- circles, loops, and epicycles, looking misleadingly like they were cavorting and having lots of fun, but they were probably trying to evade eagles and screaming hysterically. That makes Dr Pirri contemplative. But what doesn't.

Les Echadex farm, looking to the southwest

The track of some predecessors, dutifully staying right in the middle of the road

Les Echadex farm, February 2008

Striding along on perfect snow, singing old karaoke favorites

A splendid sunny afternoon, just about zero celsius and warm in the sunlight, doing our Dick Cheney impersonations as we start back down the hill

And discussing philosophy, a little bit

The Tearoom sur la Plage ('tearoom on the beach'), heavily trafficked by picnickers.

Dr Pirri wishing we had brought something to throw on the grill (under snow, right)

The view from the Tearoom: Dents du Midi (just left of centre), Lake Geneva below

The other view from the Tearoom: Mont Blanc. Lake Geneva in the middle.

Time to go home -- the trail sign for the Sentier du Coq, a fine walking path up from Marchissy (830m) through the communal forests past Les Echadex up to the Perroude de Marchissy (1429m), a buvette open in summer.

More virgin snow. This will be fun.

End of the day, everybody exhilirated, nobody crippled in the knees -- a good day!

Feedback and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, . All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 5 February 2008, revised 11 September 2014.

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