lundi 29 novembre 2010

Christmas Pudding

Today was the day to make the Christmas pudding. I never put peel in my puddings and usually substitute it with chopped apricots - this year for a change I'm trying cherries. 7-8 hours of gentle steaming this evening, then 4 weeks for the flavours to mature.

samedi 27 novembre 2010


A rough night feeling wretched...but the sun is shining and there's snow on the mountains!

vendredi 26 novembre 2010


Just an inch or so
Food for the birds
Icicles on the thatch
First snow of the winter here at Quélébu overnight. Unfortunately I have English "man-flu", so am wrapped up in bed sniffing and coughing and feeling generally rough. With just under a metre of snow at 2000m the first ski of the year is now long overdue.
Spindrift blowing from the summits this evening

mercredi 24 novembre 2010


Back from a week in Totnes visiting Susie and her children Jasper and Ruby. Finally got to see Susie teaching dance - she's amazing. A short walk on the moor, a trip to the cinema, a sauna and a swim, plus I caught up with Dominic and Bridget and Al who's also just moved to Totnes.

Whilst there a beech martin got into the chicken run here and killed all my chickens. There's been a good fall of snow on the mountains down to 1000m and it's cold. The Rayburn and stove are both alight to rewarm the house.

dimanche 14 novembre 2010

Tuc de la Seube, Cap d'Auternac, Tuc d'Eychelle (10 peak watershed)

An enjoyable circuit in fantastic weather starting and finishing at Col de la Core (1395m). Ian, Ben, Arto and I set off a little before 9 and on reaching Col d'Auèdole followed the ridge over Tuc de la Seube (2105m), Sommet de Peyre Blanque(2176m), points 2224m, 2256m, 2314m, 2331m and Cap d'Auternac (2361m). After a descent to the Col de Crouzette we climbed upto Col d'Estiouere and followed the other side of the watershed over Tuc de Quer Ner(2389m), Tuc d'Eychelle (2315m) and L'Aubague, before descending the ridge (and some tricky, iron-hard steep snow below Pene Rouge) back to the Col de la Core. Ice axes were indispensible, crampons would have been useful but we managed with some step cutting.
First summit and a quick bite to eat

The peaks on the ridge to be climbed before our descent to the Col de Crouzette
Ian heading for peak number 5
Ben strikes a pose
Lenticular clouds warn of the on-coming poorer weather

Le Mont Valier (left)

Ian descending from Tuc de Quer Ner

samedi 13 novembre 2010


A beautiful day today, 28 degrees in the sun. A walk in the mountains planned for tomorrow.

mardi 9 novembre 2010

Current state of snow

There's enough up there to ski, but there are strong winds forecast tomorrow morning which might spoil it.

vendredi 5 novembre 2010

Cabane d'Eychelle

The Indian summer continues (a reward for a tough first half to the year) so today Ian and I went for a leisurely stroll up to the Cabane d'Eychelle from the Col de le Core.
It was hot and we were post holing through the crusty snow. Not a cloud in the sky but plenty of gossamer threads of spider's web glinting in the intense sun and drifting on the gentle breeze. Meantime the valleys remained under a sea of low cloud. At the Cabane d'Eychelle we found an unopened bottle of Bordeaux and couldn't resist. We progressed no further and snoozed in the sun. In payment we took the litter left at the hut back down the mountain.
Too much wine!

jeudi 4 novembre 2010

Golden day

High pressure has reasserted itself and the days are hot and golden. The colours of the trees change so fast.

Aujourd'hui etait chaud et dorée.
Even the sheep like looking at the colours.

mercredi 3 novembre 2010

Book binding

My little book is finished. A hand made book with an original tale and a combination of watercolour and photo illustrations. "The Trial of True Love" is (of course) a romantic fairytale!

Mon petit livre est fait. Faire à la main, un histoire originale, et les croquis de aquarelle. "l'essai de vrai l'amour" est (biensûr) une conte sentimentale!

mardi 2 novembre 2010


Two days of heavy rain have kept me house bound, but I've been busy preparing the bacon, and doing some book binding (something I haven't done for a while).

Today the clouds have cleared and there's a good covering of snow. 30cm at the Port d'Aula weather station, so a tentative 'first ski tour of the season' might be made tomorrow.

Il a plu pendant deux jours et j'avais rester dedans. j'ai fait la poitrine et un livre. Ce matin les nauges ont disparu et il y a de la neige sur les montagnes. 30cm au Port d'Aula...peut être un ski demain?