Pascal Boulgakoff – Snowkiting on the Glacier

Posted on July 9th, 2014 by Ozone Snowkites

Hi all,

Summertime isn’t the best snowkiting season actually. But some glaciers in the Alps are open for summercamps and international ski-racing training-weeks. Of course the skipass is expensive and once again, this is not really into the core snowkiting spirit…

But this occasion serves for super cool snowkiting sessions with unbelievable landscapes. All glacier ski-resorts in the Alps are about 3.500m and that’s the case for the one near my place. This one is called “Glacier du Jandri” near La Grave and Les 2 Alpes.

The snowkting spot is situated right between these two famous ski-resorts but this is a mountaineering playground so no rescue staff here and if you decide to get up-there for a session, you’ll have to do it under your own risks.

No mobile phone connection here… Lot of crevasses around and you do know that the more dangerous of them are not seen but covered by a thin slice of snow called roof and which will break when the snowkiter will cross the area.

So, even if we can see wonderful snowy endless slopes, never go there with your kite and keep safely on the top of the dome called “Col de la Girose” or “Dome de la Lauze”. Check out the map and keep careful with that info.

Anyway, if you stay on the top of the glacier, where there is quite no crevasse risks, you’ll go kiting surrounded by a stunning landscape. Famous peak La Meije, or Le Râteau, and as well Pic de La Grave, seem so close than you feel like touching them with your hand.

The session will be very often above the clouds and we can think to be on the top of the world. Whats amazing is the view here and especially with a coloured kite cruising in the air and the kiter drawing his own track on the snow.

During this July 5th, the snow was soft as the 0°c kept about 3.700m, but three days ago (I couldn’t get up there) that was 30cm fresh powder snow and I guess snowkiting would be a real dream. Don’t think to cruise for so much long distance as the spot is pretty small. Look at my Kitetracker file, this is not the best of the season…

But you can be sure that if you are lucky enough to have such a cool session, you’ll never forget it for all your life. The wind during this session was N/W 5-10 knots so strong enough for cruising and not too much to get afraid. But at this high elevation, we never know and the wind can increase super fast so always keep ready to pack and go skiing back to the resort quickly if the bad weather comes.

The snowpack was the best I saw during all these past years. Lots of large areas with only rocks two or five years ago are now covered with perfect 50cm or 1m snow. I went up-there with my loved Frenzy Ultralight 13m as the forecast was due to be super gentle wind.

OK, if you are motivated enough, I mean: my kind of snowkiting junky, don’t hesitate to check out if there is any glacier near your place, get your snowkiting gear ready, find all the safety infos you can collect about your spot, and enjoy the best skiing sport ever: SNOWKITING!!!

Have great sessions mates

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