Chamonix, France:

Home of Crevasse Man

Click here to go to the more extensive site on the 2002 trip to Chamonix

In the April of 1995, we took a break to experience the exotic land called 'France' and ride the 7000' vertical drop of Chamonix. One of the most remarkable things for us was that, since Chamonix is largely skiing on active glaciers, crevasses opening up in the ice are a real threat. To warn skiers and riders of the threat, the resort posts the wonderfully international signs shown at left around the resort, depicting the unfortunate figure we immediately named 'Crevasse Man.'

We immediately sought out Crevasse Man signs. At right, a woman we met from Colorado, Jeff Wishnie, me, Alan Eyzaguirre, Jules Ellingson, and Kirk Scott mug for the camera next to Creavasse Man. When we got home from the trip, Jules made commemorative Crevasse Man sweatshirts.

On this first day, it was snowing and we couldn't really see where we were going.

Crevasse Man #1
Agile D'Midi The next day, when we got a look at the terrain, we understood a lot more about the rocky, glaciated areas we were riding in. Boy, it's a good thing we couldn't see what we were riding over the first day! Me, Kirk, Jules, and Alan pose in front of the Agile D'Midi, during an awesome guided trip across two glaciers including the Mare du Glace.
All week, our fascination with Crevasse Man continued. Here, Alan and I pose with yet another of the helpful symbols of imminent death. It turns out they had a fine variation of Crevasse Man called Cliff Man, who was missing the right-hand slope so as to demonstrate the negative consequences of riding off a precipice. Leo 'n Alan 'n you know who
Party time Conditions were generally springlike, but it was a bit cold in the mornings. The second morning, we rushed up the mountain to the top only to be greeted by sheet ice conditions. Wisely, we repaired to the cafe at around 10:45am. We thought it might be fun to try the locally vinted wine (a ritual at resorts throughout Europe). It was pretty good. We had another bottle... and another... and another... After six bottles of wine among seven of us, well, we were having a fine, fine day! A left, Charles D'Harcourt, Bryan Yamamoto, a woman from the States that we met there, Jeff, Alan, and Kirk show the happy state we attained.
One day, Jeff took a business trip to Zurich and I tagged along to experience Switzlerland. I didn't realize that high prices were really the fundamental experience one has in Switzerland (that and "mountain food", a euphemism for "food that makes you unfit to do mountain sports"). However, I knew I was in Europe when I saw this cute corner 'Condomerie.' Ye Olde Condom Shop
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