Though it is officially spring, winter is still with us due to the heavy snowfall, down to the valley floor, at the start of last week, and the recent low temperatures.
Ski touring, therefore, remains the main activity. It is possible to put on skis at 1000/1200 m, depending upon the orientation. Practically all the classic tours, (and less classic,) at mid altitude were done this last weekend. Snow conditions were variable. The NE wind has affected the snow cover in some areas. On slopes facing the sun, the snow is crusty and is being transformed. On shaded slopes, the conditions are either very good or very bad; i.e. either powder or slabby/crusty, (danger of wind slab and risk of knee damage.)
There has been a lot of activity in areas that are normally quiet/untouched.
Less information is available for the high mountain and the glaciers, where it is assumed the wind effect will have been more important. There has been some ski touring at the Grands/Trient glacier, Tour glacier (Passon, Trois cols), Argentière sector (col du Tour Noir etc.), Dôme de Miage sector (Dôme traverse, descent by the Armancette).
Due to the large amounts of fresh snow and the wind, the gullies and alpine routes are not in condition for the moment.
As a reminder, the Conscrits hut opens this Monday. The Argentière and Trient huts are already open.
A proof that winter is still with us, ice climbing is still possible on the true left bank of the Argentière glacier (Déferlante sector).
Snowshoeing remains possible, (the marked trails of Granges to Vallorcine and Barmus to Plaine Joux, as well as up to the Loriaz hut and the Chailloux chalets.) Snowshoes are becoming less necessary as the snow on the path gets more compacted with use.