Dwight Peck's personal website

Winter 2005-2006

Short breaks from poring over the newspapers as the Bushies implode

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.

Le Noirmont -- a 26 March 2006 well spent

Le Noirmont ('black mountain') is a cute ridge lying just north of the Col de la Givrine in Switzerland, hovering over the border with France on its northwest side. We come here frequently to restore our noirmontness.

Our assistant, Mr Pirri, is faithfully laying down a good track to ease our progress, a warm 26 March 2006, as we pass the farm of Les Coppettes (1323m) at the southwest end of Le Noirmont, which rises up towards the right. We're just an hour out from La Givrine, delayed just a little bit by fits of laughing at George Bush jokes.

The farm of Les Coppettes, about which more here. Actually, it's not just George Bush jokes that are slowing us down a bit; today, we've been sharing George Bush quotations. It's not that hard to mimic the trademark semi-literate cornpone drawl, but no one on earth can imitate the President's irritating tone, an amalgam of condescendingly didactic and deeply bewildered.

L'Arzière farm to the east, from the side of Le Noirmont

A chamois scout on the southeast side of Le Noirmont, just observing our progress calmly.

The scout saunters westward to consult with his colleagues.

In the meantime, a second scout has been watching from above, as . . .

. . . we instruct our assistant to get out a camera and wait for the boys to make their move.

One of our friends makes a flanking movement to get round behind us.

For some reason, scout one paused and decided that he didn't like his initial plan.

Whilst scout two followed along, sinking way down into the warm, wet snow.

We've sent our assistant, Mr Pirri, on ahead to see where our chamois friends have gone, but in the meantime they've turned round and retreated back northward, still keeping a close eye upon us.

And in due course, we top out on the slope at the old skilift on top of the first part of Le Noirmont (1547m) and we saunter onward towards the second summit

We've sent our assistant ahead a bit to locate the second summit of Le Noirmont (1567m) and quickly verify that, and, if he's got it right, to wave us ahead.

Doublechecking that we're on the right mountain

This is indeed the top of Le Noirmont, and we've requested our assistant Mr Pirri to change our camera batteries so we can catch some of these gorgeous views.

That's the farm of Les Coppettes below.

La Dôle to the south from the top of Le Noirmont.

Hijinks on the cross

The narrator re-enacting the venerable Noirmont crucifixion joke.

Mont Blanc in the mist

We've dispatched our assistant, Mr Pirri, to negotiate a convenient way down through the slushy spring snow towards the north.

Another chamois scout observing us from the ridge running northeastward towards Le Croue.

Yukon Charlies

jura-arziere2.jpg (33175 bytes)

We've turned down through the cliffs into the Combe aux Tassons and we believe we're tramping along southwestwards to L'Arzière farm.

Our assistant rushes ahead to the trail signs to verify that we are where we think we are.

The narrator limbers up his new FujiFilm camera for some improved shots of L'Arzière farm.

Under the eaves

The front door

L'Arzière farm, 26 March 2006. Now at the end of the day, we're starting for home.

We're making progress, but . . .

. . . not without mishap. The narrator nearly disappears into the warm slush.

Some things never change

And despairs and gives up.

Le Noirmont pix

Whiteout, 8 February 2004

Beau soleil, 15 January 2005

Chasing chamois, 26 March 2006

A scramble up the front, New Year's Eve 2006

Feedback and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, . All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 1 April 2006, revised 28 June 2007, 4 January 2014.

Jura snowshoeing

Snow camping