Snowshoeing in Italy / France: Preparations

It’s 2018 so I can start final preparations for the first  trip of the year … Exodus’ Transalpine Snowshoe Week.

Kit

The kit list is ready. I have a spreadsheet with tabs for kit list, itinerary & flights, insurance & emergency contacts and money. The kit list lists everything I usually take on a trek/trip, right down to extra plastic bags (always take more than you think you’ll need!), which I use as the starting point for each trip. Based on the Essential Equipment given in the Exodus trip notes, I’ve added “sit mat” and removed “thermals” and a few other camping/trekking-related items.

Map

I asked Exodus if there were any maps that cover the area we’ll be in. No joy, so I revisited Google and unearthed a few more the places mentioned in the trip notes, and made a Google map – click on the blue pins for more detail:

Weather

I also found a couple of key places on Yr – “a joint service by the Norwegian Meteorological Institute and the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation” – which is my go to resource for weather forecasts:

Insurance

The last piece of prep, other than packing, will be to get my annual travel insurance. Probably go with LV* again as they’re still rated as the best value policy on MoneySavingExpert, and their Premier level insurance covers “Trekking and hiking and fell walking up to 6000 metres“.

Logistics

Steffi, Dave and I have been coordinating our Friday rendezvous, and the plan is food followed by the Thameslink down to Gatwick for our night in the Premier Inn.

Snowshoeing in Italy / France: Mini Update

Two developments in the week following the Everest Trek Get Together No 11 relating to next February’s Transalpine Snowshoeing, with Steffi:

  1. I’ve had my holiday / time off request approved at work (thank you!) (PHEW!!)
  2. Dave’s coming too!

Woo Hoo x 2!

Where next: Snowshoeing in Italy / France

We’ve booked! Deposit paid and Premier Inn (one night at) purchased. Now I just need to book the time off work….. 

Where next-ish, as Phil and I are off to Berlin first.

Destination: The Eastern Alps, crossing from Italy to France and back.

When: Winter / Spring 2018.

What: Transalpine Snowshoeing, with Steffi.

Why: Three Four reasons:

  1. I love snowy mountains.
  2. I’m still searching for a winter trip to match 2014’s superb Mt Toubkal Winter Climb.
  3. I’ve fancied having a go at snowshoeing for ages. “Everest” Dave recommended it years ago, and Steffi went for a week in Transylvania earlier this year and raved about it.
  4. Who knows what Brexit will bring!

We’ve gone for the Exodus trip because it looked the most adventurous of their Winter 2018 Snowshoe offering – it’s rated as activity level 4, moderate/challenging, and we’ve 2 nights in a mountain hut, backpacking in our essentials for those nights/days. Plus all meals are included and the price was right (especially with their Winter Trip 5% off offer and our return customer 5% discount). I am really looking forward to all those “superb views”!

How: On Exodus’ Transalpine Snowshoe Week (no link – they don’t like me doing that!).

We’re flying London Gatwick – Turin (and back) with British Airways and have gone for flight-inclusive: partly for convenience, and in particular to get the transfer to Thures (part of Cesana Torinese, which is 43 miles from Turin and on the border with France, Wikipedia tells me) at the start of the trip and back from Cervières (across the border, in Hautes-Alpes, France) at end;  and partly based on cost, flight-inclusive is only £120 more than flight (and transfer!)-exclusive.

The group flight leaves Gatwick horribly early on the way out, so we’ve booked a twin room at the Premier Inn, Gatwick for the night before, for the princely sum of £43.50.

Can’t wait!

Itinerary:

Day 1: Arrival and transfer to Thures (part of Cesana Torinese)
Day 2: Val Thuras* & Cima del Bosco*
Day 3: Fontana del ThuresMautino Hut*
Day 4: Explore around the Mautino Hut
Day 5: Mautino Hut –  Cervières
Day 6: Cervières south faces
Day 7: Cervières loop walk
Day 8: End Cervières

* Not much info in English, so these links are to Italian pages on Wikipedia.it, and to the website for the Capanna Mautino (aka the Mautino Hut).