College holidays fell early this year so I’m taking my ski holiday before Christmas. On the web last week, I saw a cheap last-minute chalet offer at Tignes, a well-know ski resort in France that is very high so off I went.
So far it’s worked out really well. The ski conditions are very good and there are few other skiers around. No queues and no crazies. One surprise is that the chalet is not actually in Tignes itself but in a village 20 kms away. There are pros and cons to this; it makes it harder to hook up with friends and guides in the Ski Club of Great Britiain as the lifts open late and close early. On the other hand, the village is a far nicer place than Tignes town and there are plenty of people to ski with in the chalet. Even better, I’m staying in a lovely little house in the woods and go down to the main chalet for meals and socializing…perfect.
The village of Les Brevieres near Tignes
Up until now the weather has been beautiful if very cold. Today, the temperature drooped to -26 degrees up top (3000m) which was a little uncomfortable. We stayed on the slopes facing the sun as much as possible but one of our party very nearly got a mild case of frostbite.
The eye of the needle near Tignes
Meanwhile, the recent news from the CERN is good (passing through Geneva airport made me think of the LHC). Last week the collider broke several new energy records, finally bringing us into a long-awaited new regime of high energy physics. Even in this brief period before the Christmas powerdown. a great many particles were detected (‘rediscovered’) whose discovery originally took years of labour. That’s the thing about science, it’s cumulative – each step affirms the former. This is such a nice story, I’ll do a separate post on it in few days.
In a different life, I would be heading off to CERN at Christmas instead of the slopes!