Out before the lifts open

Looking towards Luz Ardiden, from the village

Looking towards a snowy Luz Ardiden, from the village

It’s been snowing heavily over the last fortnight out here in the Pyrenees. The ski stations in the valley are due to open this Saturday, the 30th November.

Still only a few days away, but some people just can’t wait that long!

Last weekend we dusted off the ski touring equipment and went out for our first outing of the season up above the ski station at Luz Ardiden.

No need to wait for the stations to open when you're ski touring!

No need to wait for the stations to open when you’re ski touring!

It was gloriously sunny lower down but as we climbed higher up the slope, the wind picked up and the sky gradually became overcast.

At the top of the ridge, we were greeted with a freezing wind as we hurried to get our skins off and ready for the descent, through half a metre of powder.

Col de Riou

A wind-swept col de Riou

Whether we are out on snow shoes, skis or simply a sledge, the first time out in the snow is always magical.

Ski touring Pyrenees