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Season Diary - Day 0

Day 0, or T-minus 1 day until we hit the slopes.

An impossibly early start this morning saw me heading up the M1 through some of the worst driving conditions imaginable to make it to London Luton Airport for an 8am flight to Geneva. My first time with EasyJet in around 18 months or so and once again I was pleasantly surprised by the gap that has opened up between EasyJet and other low-cost carriers, in particular one that rhymes with Brian Bear.

Anyway, to add some meat to this bone, I'm in Tignes in France for a handful of days on a "buyers' trip", effectively a marketing exercise by on of the ski manufacturers to convince shops to buy their skis. I know the marketing and sales reps for the brand - Volkl - very well, and am joining them as they are unveilling some exciting new things for next season. Unfortunately I won't be able to go into too much detail as things are strictly under wraps until Autumn 2024!

We arrived in Tignes around 1500, after a fairly uneventful journey up the valley from Geneva. There was snow on the ground from well before Bourg-Saint-Maurice, very low for this early in the season, but we met rain pretty much all the way until we got into Tignes itself. After a bumper start to the 2023/24 season, the more pessemistic amongst us were casting their minds back to last season, when November and Decembers' snowpack was wiped out by Christmas rain and warmth.

Luckily, things began to change, and how. Snow began to fall as dusk came, probably thanks to falling temperatures once the sun dissappeared. Huge flakes of snow, in vast numbers, fell and fell and fell.

The warmer temperatures has allowed the snowpack to settle and bind, meaning there avalanche risk shouldn't be too horrific for some of the really bad factors like persistant weak layers. The volume of new snow we are getting tonight, however, is something to keep an eye on, and we probably won't be straying off piste tomorrow.

Things are beginning to cool down tonight as we head into tomorrow. Hopefully a really good day of skiing in store. I will keep you updated as the week progresses.

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