Let it snow….

 Last weekend brought us a much-needed and much-appreciated snowfall. Waking up to blue skies against the backdrop of freshly whitened summits, we couldn’t resist an outing……

4-wheel drive pram ready and baby wrapped up, we left from our doorstep in the Val d’Azun with snow up to mid-calves for a wander through this magical scenery. Trees were ladened down with snow and fresh animal tracks were everywhere…..fox, hare, squirrel and japanese deer. They were perhaps enjoying the snow less than us as food searching becomes more difficult.

As we climbed a little, through forest and then open land, we had views on the magestic summits of Gabizos, Pic du Midi d’Arrens, Cabaliros and Hautacam. Then we stopped by a snow-covered shepherd’s cabin for a picnic in the sun and chose the right moment as, just as we were seated, quietly watching, a couple of lammergeier (vultures) soared overhead! This graceful “gypaète”with its three-metre thirty wingspan is relatively rare and although we sight couples in our valleys from time to time, it is still considered a privilige. The Spanish call this bird of prey the “Quantabros” (breaker of bones) as this is how they feed; by dropping bones from great heights, they smash them on the rocks below and can then feed on the inner marrow. A clever bird indeed!

A short but beautiful outing in just a few hours from our house. Sometimes we dont need to do great summits or expeditions to experience magical moments!

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