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TR X Wing Rally Europe Part 5-6

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

We arrived late due to traffic and a long drive. We were rushed into our rooms and to dinner. Dinner was okay but nothing spectacular. We then had a few drinks and were interviewed by Salomon as a team for their website. This was a long interview and we then went to our rooms to prepare for tommorows adventure of Climbing up Chamonix.

We stayed up late talking and organizing gear. Damn us for bringing so much crap. Every day we had to pack up and move the stuff to the car. Today we didn’t as we were staying in Chamonix for two days.

We awoke early and prepared our bags and gear for a unknown day of weather and what we were getting into. Camera’s and vid cams were loaded. I used my Black Diamond Revelation 35 bag as I wanted to use it in Chamonix even if it was slightly too big, but it had more lash points and a A frame ski carry system. In the end it was a great choice, lots of room and no full bag, very comfortable and the lashing was wicked for attaching helmet, snow shoes, and skis comfortably.

We were supposed to go to???????????????????? But due to weather the tram would not run, we took a town bus to ????????????? where we took a tram and then a chair to the start of our climb.

I am no longer a virgin, I boot packed and snow shoed up to the top. Upon arriving the top of the first climb I learned the euphoria often described. It was a great feeling and I can’t wait to continue my learning and experience of climbing for turns. Safe to say I had a huge woody and couldn’t wait to ski. My team mate got freaked the **** out on the climb up and was not comfortable with the exposure. I can understand this as this type of thing is not for everyone.

At the top Wendy Fisher, Jamie Parks and Smiley Nesbitt were all enjoying the views and waiting for their respective crews to gather. It killed me watching them ski off while I waited for my team mate. Damn ! in the back country in Chamonix and I could have skied off with them. Ah well team is a team and I must wait. Each team had a guide and our guide was taking good care of my buddy. Our team mate Robin being young, dumb and full of cum actually climbed down to take my buddies bag and hike it up for him. Again this Robin Lenell is a stand up guy of huge proportions.

We all gatherd grabbed the checkpoint picture and I snapped a few for myself.

Then full of Euphoria I skied my ass off like a superstar making huge sweeping turns and traversing high for fresh tracks. Lots of chunky frozen death chunks from avy debris woke me up quick that I can’t just blast through this stuff.

After a 1.5 km traverse around a peak we arrived at the start of our second climb. Sam our guide offered up Hot tea and we put on our snow shoes for this climb. Again I was loving using my Black Diamond Revelation 35 pack for it’s intended use. I will say the Salomon Valdez 15 being used by my buddy worked very well also but it didn’t have the volume perhaps wanted for a days outing and required reefing the buckles and straps to the max but it did work. I personally prefer an A frame carry of the ski’s to the diagonal the Valdez bag uses.

The climb was pretty straight forward but got steep and off camber at the top causing one of my snow shoes to slip off and caused me to actually fall down, head over ass and after a heart stopping moment my ski bottom dug into the snow and stopped me or it would have been a very hairy long long long tumble down hill. **** the snow shoes, I took them off and boot packed the rest.

Again at the top my juices were flowing and I felt like 1 million bucks. I ate a Croissant with Bacon and Cheese that I made at breakfast, had a drink and a banana and snapped some pics, gave the vid cam to my buddy Robin for him to shoot me (this guy rocks, such a good guy)

We traversed over a bit to get some fresh lines on a steeper aspect. Sam ripped it down first (using Dynastar Legend 8800’s) I wished I had brought mine, but the Tornado’s from two previous days of pow has proved their competency and just needed speed to work well in powder. Fine by me I planned to rip this hard like a superstar. And I did, Robin caught most of it on film but being unfamiliar with zooming and filming he lost me part way down.

I was in heaven. Back country Chamonix in powder on a Blue bird day. Life I don’t think gets much better and I soaked up every minute thankfull to be alive and experiencing this.

We worked our way down and out the valley bottom. Part way we stopped for a breather and a drink, I then say what I thought was a nice waterfall and snapped a few pics, robin was video taping it. I found out later that night that it was actually a avalanche coming down. SWEET got pics of a avalanche.

The ski out was I guess typical, weeving through tree’s, the snow pack diminished quickly at the bottom and required taking off the ski’s a few times.

Thouroughly bagged and way behind time we missed the free lunch at the restaurant. We took a shuttle bus back to the hotel and I chilled in the courtyard, in bare feet soaking up sun eating chocolate, and the rest of my packed lunch ( I learnt early to always have food in the pack as you can’t always get to the eating places or back to the car for Grub)

This was great sitting in Chamonix and had some time finally to myself. I sat back watching Chamonix life go by, warm sun on my sore feet, people walking all over in ski suits, boots and carrying skis and poles. This is a life I am going to look into more, I may move there someday.

We then went to the room, grabbed a shower and went out to go shopping. Great town, lots of shops, great ambiance and a must visit place.

We then had to prepare a slideshow of ten pics from the day for points. The avy picture got lots of ooo’s and awees.

We then packed the friking ******* bags again and went to sleep.

The crew walking to the tram that never ran

Ski upon a tree

Wendy Fisher getting ready

Waiting waiting at La Flagere for the tram

Our team ready to start climbing

There was 60 racers plus the support staff were into it to get some. Lots of people.

Up up up

Kevin of the flaming Snow Blades out of Whistler, winners of the Fernie Rally

As I am reaching the top

Looking back down the climb less all the people

Yeah baby I am high

see next post for rest of photos
post #2 of 17
Thread Starter 
Wendy Fisher at the top

Us ******* around for check point picture

My Salomon Tornado's ready to go

Our great Guide Sam

Can you beleive this ****, I get to ski this and be here right now !

Looking back down the second climb

Glamour shot, Cheezy to the max but it was great

Robin Lenell going to get some. Straight lining crazy bastard !

Buddy Jay getting some

Jay and Robin gettin it
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
Crazy bastard flew this like a GS course while filming it no less

Many thanks to Robin for taking video duty of me. I will post the vids when I load them to my computer.

Surveying the next move

Jay and Robin getting more

Robin gettin a sick line

What I thought was a waterfall through fogged sunglasses

Perhaps a once in a life time photo opportunity and I got it by accident.

Hiking out through some thin coverage

Chillin and maxin relaxin after a wicked day

Chillin in town later that afternoon

Now thats a ski head office

Our Hotel

Want some wine with that CHEEZE
post #4 of 17
Very nice! So your first experience hiking significant vertical for turns is in Cham in a rando comp!? Crazy canuck! Looks like you took to it like a fish to water.

Wendy Fisher's team looks hot. Have you tried to form an "alliance" with any in that crew? Bag a rock star while you're bagging peaks? A lot of those ripping chicks think gapers are cute. Go for it, you'll regret it if you don't.

Oh yeah, the skiing lots hot, too! Enjoy the downhill, I don't think you are in danger of winning this event, so no need to rush unduly the descents. Enjoy the snow and awesome terrain. Time is made on the climbs.
post #5 of 17
Excellent report - was it the Aguile du Midi cable car that was closed?
post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 
Telerod: the comp is over and done and I am now back at home. I did force myself to look up and enjoy during the race. It wasn't easy as it was severly grueling. No we were in no danger of winning.

I am pretty pleased with Chamonix, Kinda like the Virgin bagging the head cheerleader for his first.

Not sure if much I do from now will compare but by far that was hands down the best day of the trip for me and hands down the worst for my buddy.

Safe to say I wasn't too interested in the women, too busy keeping my body working and moving, and wasn't up for the head games. Besides that I can assure Wendy is by no means like that at all, she is a real lady.

VRCKA: this report is long from over, the pictures get better as we go on, we hadn't even realized we could make easy points with pictures at this stage in the game. Also these are only the pictures I took with my peice of crap 2 mega pixel cam. Wait till I get my buddies taken with a 7 mega pixel cam by someone who knows how to use it and has an eye for it. I'm just a moron pressing a button set on Auto with these shots.

We ended up second in the photo contest and the person who got first was a professional photographer. There was many praises of our photo's by the judges, some of which I am sure were from my photo's but most from my buddies. The young kid Robin had an incredible imagination for good shots and was always setting himself up for good shots. Seriously wait for the other photo's

Wear the Fox Hat: I fogot all my info at home and couldn't fill in where we were in Chamonix, I will try to confirm tonight. I am sure where we ended up going was La Flerge.
post #7 of 17
La Flaine?

The other cable car it might have been is at Brevents - opposite Mont Blanc.
post #8 of 17
Originally Posted by Marmot mb View Post
... Besides that I can assure Wendy is by no means like that at all, she is a real lady...
Excellent! I sensed something happened between you two.

Really nice pictures, looking forward to the 'good' ones.
post #9 of 17
Marmot, I hope some of my votes made the difference. Really nice trip report here.

I merged the reports together which is going to make it a bit tough on the dial ups, but otherwise these things tend to get scattered over time, especially since you didn't use cross-links. Anyway, hope you don't mind.
post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 
I don't mind it being put together, I did it seperate to assist those with dial up not having to load a huge amount of photos.

THere should be about 8-9 parts total.

Every vote counted and went towards and amazing trip. Thanks
post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 

TR Xwing Rally Europe Part 6

Cervenia / ZERMATT
We had a long 1.5 hour drive from Chamonix to Cervenia. After some very long tunnels we arrived to snowing like a bastard conditions and what was to be ANOTHER Euro Powder day. Damn that horseshoe up my ass was getting uncomfortable.

We assembled for briefing and were set loose to rape and pillage the hill. Once arriving at the top of cervenia I couldn’t see a damn thing. Complete whiteout.

Thankfully the Magoo TV crew was there and if we let them tape us we would get 100 points. Due to the conditions we decided this was a smart play as that was 3-4 checkpoints and in these conditions we were unlikely to find a lot and making time wasn’t going to happen. We had a blast skiing backwards and goofing around for the camera.

As we approached Zermatt the snow stopped and it turned into a Blue Bird sunny day. Very strange, coming out of Italy into Switzerland and having the conditions change so drastically, seeing the Matterhorn come into the clear was a wicked thing.

Happy we got the Materhorn outlook checkpoint grabbed some pics and took off to the valley bottom (2000 m + down) to get more checkpoints. A few wicked powder runs and a great ski down we met up with Kaj Zacrisson and his posse. We tagged along with them up the gondy to the next check point.

At the top they crossed under the rope with the pro photographer and we asked if we could join. I later realized this was an important moment that I didn’t value enough. Read on.

I was with Kaj Zacrisson and a pro Photographer. This was my moment in the sun, I was going to make the most of this, if there was ever a moment to shine this was it. The field of snow we overlooked was all fresh, about knee deep and I was feeling good.

Kaj went first making sweet effortless turns. The pro photographer was ready and looked at me, I knew this was my moment. I hopped a small drop off and went for broke. Full speed huge GS turns, snow spraying everywhere all fresh, I was on cloude nine. I never wanted this to end.
Sadly after 4 -5 full speed turns I heard a scraping from the bowels of HELL.

Clacier ice and rocks under my skis. Next thing I know I am air borne off a cliff I thought was simply a roller. HOLY **** !

I began to taste death and expected to be dead in a few seconds. A lot of things went through my head, my wife and child, my family, what the impact would be like. Trust me it tastes bad and if I never taste it again that is fine by me.

This is where I owe all the maggots and Epic members part of my life.

Reading all the things here about how to land huge and get out of trouble etc…. I decided to fight for life and try to land, I moved my skis ever so slightly to the side, angled back slightly to spread the landing across my body and hoped for the best.

BOOM I landed, checked back, my head slammed back and then I started to cartwheel. I figure I cartwheeled 8 – 12 times. I all I remember is white. Is this the light?

I finally stopped and was wheezing heavily, I dare not move right away. I wiggled my fingers, my toes, and moved my head slightly. Then After a minute of so I sat up. Snot running out my nose, mouth filled with snow and slobbering, helmet half off, goggles off, I wheezed and tried to breath. I was alive I must be damaged though.

I looked up hill. HOLY **** I WENT OFF THAT ! ! ! !,,, HOLY **** I TUMBLED THAT FAR.

I estimate at this time the cliff was at least 20 meters high and due to the speed I was going I traveled at least 100 feet in distance, The bomb hole, I was told later, was 6 feet deep and 6 feet across and it was not blower POW.

Full size taken by my buddy jay afterwards way down from the cliff

Cropped to show and get feed back for all of you on how big you all think it was.

My buddy Robin came down like an angle in his white coat with my skis and poles and looked severly worried and asked are you okay. I stated I was and tried to stand up. All was well, I was sore but alive and nothing broken.

Kaj and the photographer and their crew had no idea I went off the cliff.
I was alive and the photographer was still there. There was money shots to be had, I skied on making more wicked turns.

I faded fast though as the adrenaline wore off, I was coming into shock and my energy was completely drained. It was late afternoon and we had to get back to Italy.

It took us 2.5 hours to get back to Italy where I became increasingly pale and drained. I manned it out and skied down from the top of Cervania to the parking lot where everyone who saw me asked if I was alright as I was white as ghost.

We then had a 4.5 hour drive to Switzerland. The race must go on. Buddy drove the first leg and I the second. They drive really fast in Italy. We drove through tunnels doing 160 KM. Man what fun.

The road to the resort in St. Moritz Switzerland was a real blast. The manual tip-tronic shifting was howl and I drove the living piss out of that car. Ahhh good times, what a car !

The hotel was wicked Swiss. Very simple and un cluttered. We washed some ski socks and shirts, got some drinks and went to bed.

Snowing in Cervania

Kaj Zackrisson

Kaj Zackrisson

Kaj Zackrisson (yes I kinda like this one !)

Sorry no more pics of this day as after the fall taking pics was not high on my list of things to do.
post #12 of 17
Wow, this just gets better...

I'm going to agree with you that the page loading is getting a bit slow. I split the report into two parts. PART I is HERE.
post #13 of 17
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Cirquerider View Post
Wow, this just gets better...
The night after our hike in Chamonix is when we realized we needed to get picture points to have any hope of staying in the race.

Just wait till I start up loading my buddy Jays OOOOO doggie they are sweet.pics.

So far these are all just mine, with exception to the pics of the cliff I went off.

You poor folks with dial up, it's gonna take a while.
post #14 of 17
Dude, when you duck under a rope... You know, might be something dangerous. Kodak courage? I can see how a cliff like that could sneak up on you, such things are marked inbounds, or, uh, roped off. Well, you know all that. I'm glad you're OK. Awesome cliff huck, yo!

Sorry, I didn't know you were married when I was joking about WF. Guessing now she is also based on your response. Sorry Wendy, I was just kidding.
post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by telerod15 View Post
Dude, when you duck under a rope... You know, might be something dangerous. Kodak courage? I can see how a cliff like that could sneak up on you, such things are marked inbounds, or, uh, roped off. Well, you know all that. I'm glad you're OK. Awesome cliff huck, yo!

Sorry, I didn't know you were married when I was joking about WF. Guessing now she is also based on your response. Sorry Wendy, I was just kidding.
I'll take this time to try and save anothers life.

Firstly I am Canadian, our asses are protected up the ying yang, often even out of bounds there are little bamboo poles infront of big things, like that cliff.

Yes I was in the Kodak moment. Not so much courage (or is it stupidity ?) as I have lots of that regardless but I was syched to be infront of a Pro Photgrapher with the right connections, I dream of being being a big skier (who doesn't) This trip I knew would offer opportunities I would never ever get again in life and I was taking this one.

I started off with making one of the best runs of my life in mind. I certainly did that, it was EPIC ! my tracks speak for themselves. I was going extremely fast and I got lost in the moment. I suspected this Powder feild would go on forever and I was only getting started. I was just ripping loving the moment and knowing the camera was going to get my best stuff. Then out of nowhere. OH CRAP I'm air borne.

Please please learn from my mistake everyone. Look ahead, don't get lost in the moment, many times it will be very good but unknown lines can kill you !

Yeah my wife came and asked me what's with this Wendy chick. Thanks for that. LOL
post #16 of 17
Thread Starter 
After receiving the photos from my buddy here are the shots before and after the cliff incident.

Comming out of Italian white out into Swiss Bliss

are words even needed

Butt at 12, 736 feet

Rallin' at 12, 700 feet


at the start of the whole cliff event

Robin Lenell went first

Then Kaj went

Then I went

Kaj comming down

At this point I have gone off the cliff but no one knows it. I beleive I went off to the left of the tracks above Kaj, I beleive these tracks are the tracks to the right of mine (in the zoomed in picture)

This guy is a great skier, check the shots

At this time everyone realized I hucked splat meat.

Then the POW fest continued


Me, cliff crash aint stoppin me (yet)

Pretty sure this is me

Me making money

The digital display sums up the days riding nicely
post #17 of 17
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