Dwight Peck's personal website

Sun and fun on Mont Tendre in 2005

Year after year, Mont Tendre, unlike western civilization, remains as much fun as ever.

You may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.

We're bound for Mont Tendre on 13 March 2005, on cross-country skis this time.

That's not Mont Tendre -- no, not yet, not by a long march. That's Grand Cunay, seen from the road behind the Col du Marchairuz near the cross-country ski carpark at the head of the Combe d'Amburnex and the forest of Grande Rolat. We're just getting started, on the first brilliantly sunny weekend in months, and we're headed across the flats to the farm of Pré de Denens in the center there, to pick up the machined cross-country track and gain time.

Dr Pirri powering along the crosscountry track past the Pré de Denens farm.

The farm of La Racine, about 10 kilometres out. Snowshoeing is fun, but slow. Our theory is that we'll gain time by skiing out the cross-country track, and then, once we're in the vicinity, prance straight up to Mont Tendre on snowshoes in a jaunty manner.

Now we're ready to leave the ski track and start up to Mont Tendre. Dr Joe gazes up into the forest and focuses his mind, which is not hard anymore. We're carrying the snowshoes along in case the top area is iced over, which is not unusual for this side of Mont Tendre, where the wind comes in from Greenland. Many's the time we've got this far after two or three ill-spent hours and had to go home again, disconsolate, without getting to the top.

Dr Joe is wisely following the track of a previous party of skiers, back and forth up through the forest.

The snow is fairly gooey down here, provoking floundering and profanity.

Emerging out of the forest

Dr Joe gazes upon the summit.

That's the top of Mont Tendre on the left, somewhat featureless from this side. The far side of the mountain is far more interesting.

The snowshoers' track proceeds boldly straight up, but we cross-country skiers will wander back and forth for a while instead, lest we ski back down involuntarily, backwards.

Another part of Mont Tendre as we glide briskly up towards the main summit.

Jura shrubberies, with the effects of the Mont Tendre wind . . .

. . . the wind that's come in from Greenland.

The snow's not bad here but as we get higher, oooff, intermittently icy. Dr Joe can just be discerned on the extreme right horizon. (Dr Joe is considerably older than I am and has had many more years to perfect his physical conditioning.)

That's Dr Joe himself on the summit, awaiting us, with the summit pylon over to the left.

Dr Joe on a well-trodden Mont Tendre summit. We're not the first ones here. (Mont Blanc and Lac Léman/Geneva in the background.)

The famous Mont Tendre fenceposts.

Another party prepares to descend as best they may.

The Chalet Mont Tendre below, Lake Neuchâtel in the background

The narrator, with the Alps and Lake Geneva in the background

Leaving the summit behind, 13 March 2005.

And a last look back up towards the top as we shuffle around the icy bits.

The long road home.

More photos of Mont Tendre
First snowy hike of 2013/2014 (3 November)
Through fog and snow to Mont Tendre, June 2013
Sun and fun on Mont Tendre on skis, March 2005
More photos of Mont Tendre in the winter of 2003-2004
More photos of Mont Tendre, 2001-2002
Snowshoeing on Mont Tendre, January 2000
Introductory photos of Mont Tendre in 1997
Some summer photos of Mont Tendre for a change, July 2002
Trees of Mont Tendre

Feedback and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, . All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 19 March 2005, revised 9 June 2012, 6 November 2013, 12 January 2020.

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