SkiBike Tour 2014-15 - Avoriaz Reunion

Posted: Saturday, 28 March 2015 by Mark Kinnon in Labels: , , ,

Avoriaz was one of the first skibike friendly resorts that I visited in France and has become somewhat of a perennial favourite, it's always a cool place to go and the snow is always good. I can guarantee that I will spend a day or two here each season, no matter what other delights are offered.

Today's ride was somewhat of a reunion; as blog co-writer Wayne had come out for a long weekend to join me, Thierry had made his way over from the Aravis area and John all the way from the 3 Valleys. Group rides always have a different feel to solo expeditions, sometimes you are spurred on to get out of your comfort zone and try new things.

Group riding - get out of your comfort zone and try something new

We spent a great deal of the morning cruising around the pleasant long runs below the Pointe de Voriaz, but the highlight of the day was to be found heading of the top of Les Haut Forts.
After all these years I had never tried the Coupe du Monde black run, this is where World Cup skiers hurl themselves flat out down the fall line in search of glory. I was quite content to take my time and get down in one piece, it is a steep run following a ridge line. The vertiginous drop-offs to each side are intimidating and you had better get your turns in on time, as it's a long way down. On the plus side the snow was in surprisingly good condition and there was enough grip to have control.

Avoriaz - quite a reunion

Feeling fiesty, we returned to the same starting point and followed the SnowCross Crozats route, a steep, un-groomed "big mountain" run that had given Thierry and I a near death experience a couple of years ago.
I am merely a survival skibiker, I will give most things a try and am not ashamed to cheat by getting off my skibike and turn it around to face the other way when I feel it is too steep to make a turn. I was humbled to be so out-classed by the talent of the other riders, it was like watching an instructional video all the way down. You know a run is gnarly when it leads onto a black graded run and your first thought is "phew, now I can relax a little".

Avoriaz - phew, now I can relax a little