A jaded hack rides again

Guess the uplift, and spot the new Gwin Onza pro-model tyre....

***Edited on 30th May with the updated opening and closing dates for summer 2016. Two weekends to go y’all…**

I did some reading over the winter on how to betterer use english good for right stuff.

“Start with an analogy or an image” is one common recommendation for getting over the awkward hurdle of sullying the blank sheet of white paper (pixels) infront of you.

Rising, like a phoenix from the ashes, the bike emerges from its winter slumber. Sounds a bit too heroic a comparison for me digging the bike out the back of the cave, shaking the dust off it (or the worst of it at least), pumping up the tyres and heading out for a wee pootle about the grand trails low in the Chamonix valley.

Servoz. The usual first ride of the season, and the usual watering stop on the way up.

In fact, it’s all so mundane that I’ll skip the riding bit and move straight to that rarest of things; a useful blog post.

The where-can-I-cheat-gravity-and-get-myself-carried-to-the-top-of-the-hill-and-when-does-it-start list, complete with a new 2016 innovation, when does it finish. Elon Musk ain’t got shit on me.

Chamonix (usual CdMB caveats apply)

Bellevue: 11th June – 25th September
Le Tour: 11th June – 25th September
Flegere: 11th June – 18th September
Brevent/Planpraz: 11th June – 18th September
Tramway du Mont Blanc: 11th June – 18th September
Prarion: 18th June – 11th September
Grand Montets: 25th June – 25th September
Vallorcine: 2nd July – 4th September

And some other handy places

La Thuile: 25th June – 4th September
Portes du Mont-Blanc: 24th June – 4th September (and part of the MBU pass now too mind)
Grand Massif: Assorted start and finish times across the area, but basically between 2nd July – 28th August
Pila: Weekend 18th/19th June for the Gondola then full opening 25th June – 11th September
Portes du Soleil: Full area opening 24th June – 4th September with limited openings from 11th June and Les Gets weekends only 28/29 May & 4/5 June
Verbier: All weekends in June then 27th June – 30th October

Spence has been dreaming about bikes all winter, seems to have kept his technique sharp.

The paradigm shifting change that is including closing dates into my early season lift opening dates post isn’t the end of the innovation here at Chamonix bike blog, oh no.

Sometime in May(ish) an instagram link thingy will appear over there to your right in the side bar where more regular updates on trail conditions will appear and also you can ask questions that might get answered in the same month as they’re asked because, to be honest, I really don’t check the email or facebook inboxes that often and when I do I tend to just delete 1/2 the messages anyway.

Normal Caillet trail still needs a bit longer to melt out, but the descent down to Les Bois is dry.

It’s not just me that’s been changing stuff either. CdMB has extended the summer pass to include the whole Portes du Mont Blanc area, so you can now ride from pretty much Switzerland at Vallorcine all the way through the Chamonix valley and over to St Gervais, Les Contamines, Megeve and Combleux with barely an uphill pedal stroke along the way. And back again. Maybe. We’ll test this one out in a couple months.