After consulting my newest acquisition, Stefan and I went for the Fuggstock (2371 m), situated in the beautiful Glarus region. Facts looked nice: 500 m up with a gondola, 1000 m climbing, 1500 m downhill. So we went in that gondola with about 0 °C at the village. We got out that gondola 500 m above at a felt 15 °C .. First look around showed nothing but plain grass. We fully caught the foehn. At least that means the sun is shining. Fortunately, after walking for a little while, the snow slowly started covering the ground. We went on – I mean we drove 2 hours to get there plus we had already payed the gondola and our boards are quite fucked up anyway. I got better. The terrain changed quickly and never got boring. Definitely a nice ascent. Reaching the ridge that led to the peak, we almost got blown away like every snow that might have been there some days ago. Well, we took cover, had some food and Stefan tried to reach the peak, which turned out to be way too risky without crampons and a pickaxe (we should really get us some soon .. that not been the first time). Meanwhile the wind managed to grab my board and threw it a good reach down the slope. Luckily it didn’t got damaged.
We thought that’s about it and at least the downhill – on the opposite flank – should be fine, as all the snow should have been blown there or at least not gotten blown away as on the climb’s flank. Which was true, but .. Due to beeing a southern slope and the foehn’s warm temperatures, the snow has morphed into something heavy, slushy and almost honey like. Though it was fairly steep, the only way to get down there, was going schuss all the way. And even that did only work on the steepest parts. The rest consisted of pushing, jumping, crawling and such. After a good while, we reached the logging road the leads back to the village. This road actually has a small incline but due to the marvellous snow condition, we had to use the poles to push us the entire 4 km. The last part we thought should be at least ridable as it is a sledging track the should be groomed and has a slightly steeper incline. I was steeper indeed, but thanks to all the sled running down there, it was more of a gravel road. Hopping from snow patch to snow patch and sacrificing the love towards our board we got down there somehow ..
That’s been the worst conditions on a tour ever. Period. Especially, as the tour itself would be really nice if they play along. Fast, varying climb, interesting peak and a nice long downhill that is on another slope than the climb. Lesson learned .. always check for signs of foehn before leaving.
On the other hand .. I’m getting closer and closer to becoming a professional at repairing snowboards …