The 60 Day Ski Challenge

This post is now four years old but I’m keeping it to remind ourselves that ‘All things in moderation’ is a good maxim to live by.


How hard could it be to alpine ski every day for sixty days? That’s the challenge Stuart set himself starting Feb.16, 2013. Piece of cake you might say but bear in mind Stuart is 61 years old and carries a number of pre-existing injuries. Still he’s game to try. Let’s see how he goes!
DAY ONE 16/2/2013
Full sun all day. Eased into it with St Martin to Meribel runs including Michael Cooke’s favourite, Jerusalem. Off piste in pm. Great start!

DAY TWO 17/2/2013
More sun but freezing so stayed down in Meribel Mottaret. Off piste after lunch. Now I get it!

DAY THREE 18/2/2013
Minus six degrees celsius with full sun. Frostbitten fingers. Icy down Mont Vallon. Excellent lunch Plan de les mains on deck under rugs.

DAY FOUR: 19/2/2013
Warmer at minus four with total sun. Is there no end to this snowfest? First time down black run – La Face – above Meribel. Best black yet according to Sharon.

DAY FIVE: 20/2/2013
Another ‘grand soleil’ day. Over to La Masse and obligatory photo with the ibex carving. Changed skis to more off piste style.

DAY SIX: 21/2/2013
Sun and cold is just relentless. Skiied stupidly fast but didn’t come to grief. Watched a few downhill women racers practicing for the gold medal event on Saturday in Meribel. Gutsy.

DAY SEVEN: 22/2/2013
Instead of the slopes we were in London for the day to farewell Brother-In-Law William. He loved to ski almost as much as playing hockey and golf. He will be missed by many but lives on in his beautiful children, Alex and Rosie. This was my tube station for the ICI London years.

DAY EIGHT (Seventh Day Skiing) 23/2/2013
We rose, we froze, we dozed and in between we did a little skiing on Meribel side. Up too late to see women’s downhill racing. Sun has got his hat on.

DAY NINE (Eighth Day Skiing) 24/2/2013
Misty mountain high kind of day with 20cms fresh snow to play in. Watched women’s slalom event in Meribel. Crazy fast!

DAY TEN (Ninthe day of skiing) 24/2/213
Late start for Sharon to buy her new ski boots in VT. Thanks to Martyn for lending us his Suzuki to get there. Over to Les Menuires and VT for a magical afternoon spoilt only by watching the medical emergency helicopter evacuate a very broken skier.

DAY ELEVEN (Tenth day of skiing) 25/2/2013
Last of the v cold, sunny days. Over to Courchevel to find less crowded pistes. Was a 2 blood wagon day. Some magical red runs.

DAY TWELVE (Eleventh day of skiing) 26/2/2013
Plan was to ski after lunch until dinner at Chardon Bleu and ski down by torchlight but they didn’t get the numbers so we just had to drink vin chaud there and at La Loy instead. Roamed from Meribel to Les Menuires and back to St Martin.

DAY THIRTEEN ( Twelve days of skiing) 28/2/2013
Sharon’s last day of skiing for two weeks. Mixed it up by doing a morning of skiing Mottaret and then an afternoon loop walk around the river. Gorgeous sunny, warm day!

DAY FOURTEEN (no ski day) 1/3/2013
Stu is spending a large chunk of today in Lyon airport seeing me off and meeting Tris who is coming for a week ‘working holiday’. It is dense fog so just as well he is off the piste!

DAY FIFTEEN (Thirteenth day of skiing) 2/3/2013
Stu swapped me for Tris on his snow board and by all accounts covered a lot more territory with Martyn leading the expedition. No maps needed!

DAY SIXTEEN (Fourteenth day of skiing) 3/3/2013
Bit sore after the big day with Martyn yesterday. Up Saulire from our new abode in Meribel Les Allues and did some runs down towards Courchevel. Lunched at a restaurant with the most beautiful view then went up to one of the highest points surrounded by snow clad peaks then down via the Creux Noire which was as scary as it sounds. Returned to Meribel and did a last run down La Face which is now truly a black run.

DAY SEVENTEEN (Fifteenth day of skiing) 4/3/2013
Up where the clouds are high. 3000 meters and still breathing. The challenge: 1000 m vertical descent non stop. The result: Failure (one stop).

DAY EIGHTEEN (Sixteenth day of skiing) 5/3/2013
Conducted high altitude business meeting with Nick and Tris at La Face, Meribel.

DAY NINETEEN (Seventeenth day of skiing) 6/3/2013
A day at La Plagne with Tristan. Warmer so heavy going in softer snow. Photo looking towards Courchevel.

DAY TWENTY (Eighteenth day of skiing) 7/3/2013 Storm trooping Courchevel. V tired and looking forward to a weekend off skiing!

DAY TWENTY ONE (Nineteenth day of skiing) 8/3/2013
Seems rain stopped play. No ski day but the red wine was good!

DAY TWENTY TWO (Nineteen days skiing to date) 9/3/2013
Stuart walked the Chiltern Hills with his sister Catharine today. Not a snow flake in sight.
DAY TWENTY THREE (Nineteen days skiing) 10/3/2013
Stuart and Charles were at the Six Nations Rugby match between England and Italy at Twickenham. Cold enough for snow! 18:11 to England on penalties.

DAY TWENTY FOUR (Nineteen days skiing)
This was a travel day London to Meribel for Stu. There is snow forecast but I sense a strong reluctance by him to pull his ski boots on again this week!!!
DAY TWENTY FIVE (Nineteen days skiing)
Another bad weather day so this was my view for the day!

DAY TWENTY SIX (Twentieth day of skiing) Sun, ice, lost in fog and sore bum!

DAY TWENTY SEVEN (Twenty days skiing) Skis say no! And you can see why.


DAY TWENTY EIGHT (Twenty one days of skiing) The sun has got his hat on and Stuart’s come out to play!

DAY TWENTY NINE (Twenty one days of skiing)
A doctor’s appointment for a strained intercostal muscle and a walk down to Brides Les Bains for a late lunch was the agenda today.

DAY THIRTY (Twenty one days of skiing) Stu bought fog goggles today so I may be able to drag him away from the fireplace tomorrow!

DAY THIRTY ONE (Twenty one days of skiing) we swapped downhill skis for snow shoes. Hard work!

DAY THIRTY TWO (Twenty two days skiing) I am counting our ski de fond lesson today. Tougher than many alpine ski days!

DAY THIRTY THREE (Twenty three days) Blue skies and fresh powder for Sharon’s 57th birthday snd the first day of spring.

DAY THIRTY FOUR (Twenty Four Days of skiing) Glorious weather again and decent snow with picnic lunch in snow park.

DAY THIRTY FIVE ( Twenty five days of skiing) Stu and Michael skiied together today while I pootled about up Saulire. They did Courchevel and La Tania with lunch in Boucle Blanc. Mike’s attempt to get the daily photo failed so I snapped the intrepid one in the tub!

DAY THIRTY SIX (Twenty five days of skiing)
Cloudy/foggy day so Stu opted to stay home and look after me as I have a touch of French flu. Michael went skiing.

DAY THIRTY SEVEN (Twenty six days skiing)
Whiteout wipeout! A day we should have stayed home….

DAY THIRTY EIGHT (Twenty six days skiing) Another foggy day until late afternoon. Did laundry in Brides and got hair cut so not totally wasted. Sharon still sick. Perked up watching Jose et Liliane on ‘Scenes des Menages’.

DAY THIRTY NINE (Twenty seven days of skiing) The old man hits the black runs. Sharon still recovering from flu so just joined Stu for lunch atop Saulires.


DAY FORTY (Twenty seven days of skiing) First of four days of snow and a day for reading in front of the fire!

DAY FORTY ONE ( Twenty seven days skiing) Stu still sick in bed and rain outside.

DAY FORTY TWO (Twenty eight days skiing) Blue sky and back on the slopes but Stu’s lungs not happy. Long lunch at Chardon Blue.

DAY FORTY THREE (Twenty eight days skiing) Stu not up to skiing today so a gentle loop walk to Villaret overlooking Les Allues.

DAY FORTY FOUR (Twenty eight days skiing) A trip to the doctor in Meribel today and a bucket of medication to tackle the symptoms of this crummy virus.

DAY FORTY FIVE (Twenty eight days skiing) Stu followed Doc’s orders and rested today. I on the other hand had a brilliant day skiing. All non-stop runs, even Mont Vallon!

DAY FORTY SIX (Twenty eight days skiing) Foggy day so no inclination to defy doctor’s orders. Coffee with The Times at L’Arbe a nice break.

DAY FORTY SEVEN ( Twenty nine days skiing) Back on the slopes!

DAY FORTY EIGHT ( Twenty nine days skiing) Total fog to start the day so instead of skiing it was a long lunch at Le Blanchot. Toughest decision was which wine to choose with Maryse.

DAY FORTY NINE (Thirty days of skiing!) Snow and fog but we skiied and rewarded ourselves with lunch at Chez Alfred.

DAY FIFTY (Thirty days of skiing) The snow and fog were back with a vengeance so a lazy day indeed!

DAY FIFTY ONE (Thirty one days skiing) At last we got a proper day of spring skiing! Probably the last as we have a lot of errands to do tomorrow on our final day in Les Allues. Stuart’s challenge was sabotaged by bad weather and the flu but 31/51 aint bad!

We learned from this experiment that there is such a thing as too much skiing. Stu will stick to shorter ski trips in future.

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