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Showing posts from September, 2016

A fantastic last few days

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So, it's time to leave Chatel. In fact, it's time to leave the alps, and even time to leave France. Over the last few days I've frantically tried to fit in all the little bits of running I haven't quite managed to tick off yet... And I nearly did it! Two summits on my map remain unvisited, but they are relative piddlers out here (1808m and 1627m) and I'm not as annoyed as I thought I might be not to tick off the lot. It's been a fantastic season, and Friday and Saturday cemented that fact as I undertook an overnight trip up to the Refuge Dent D'Oche (via another five "ticks" on the way).

The weather was pretty rubbish during the day and by the time I reached the refuge at 11pm, having started much later than planned, I was quite damp. However, the rain stopped just before the top and the view of Lac Leman and Lausanne was stunning. Unfortunately the refuge was closed - I knew it was "sans guardian" but I thought there would be a room ope…

Racing... and the unthinkable!

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We're coming to the end of our time in the Alps now, and after the busy French school holidays in August, Chatel is now a very quiet place... Things are reaching a close: I have a tourist map on the bathroom wall with maybe 40 summits on it, about 35 of which now have ticks against them, and with a bit more time on Saturdays I was able to travel to Switzerland and race for the first time since the Trail des Cretes du Chablais.

The race was the Trail de Bellevue, a 40km trail race with about 2500m of ascent. The majority of the ascent comes straight off the startline as the race climbs from the start in the village of Collombey to the summit of the Pointe de Bellevue. It was a beautiful day, and after some debate at the start about the kit requirements (basically there was no requirement, but you HAD to carry a backpack... no bumbags allowed!) we were off starting to climb.

There were quickly a group of five of us at the front, including two brothers in full Salomon kit. Reading th…