Get out there! Ski Touring in March

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What an amazing week. Instead of just dashing about on the piste, we spent a terrific week exploring the outback of this lovely region.

Our first venture into the delights of ski touring and all done within easy reach of the resorts and their facilities.  Staying at Apartment Strimms in Zauchensee and the chalet next door, our week was packed with new experiences for all.

We set up the week for people who had very little or no experience in the discipline of ski touring. Learning new skills such as transceiver searches, how to apply skins to the skis and kick turns with your heels free! That’s fun…

Martin Helen, Steve, Belinda and Simon were our great team on this fun packed week. All ready for trying out the new skill. Its safe to say we are all HOOKED now, looking for our next mini ski tour.

The weather was absolutely fantastic, the snow was great on the piste and the off piste was challenging but then, that’s part of going off piste!

First day was spent learning that skiing off piste is not all about creating lovely arcs in deep powder, sometimes there is no powder, so learning new skills such as coping with heavy conditions and how to get up from a fall in deep snow..as sometimes when you walk into a hole next to a tree…that’s funny…sorry Belinda and Helen…but then, I seem to remember Martin also had an argument with the front of his skis….shame those heels kept moving out Martin! Video to follow on FB?

Day two, get to know your equipment… A morning learning about, skins, probes, transceivers, shovels, maps and altimeters..Ho, and how to stick together as a group, this is team work. Following our equipment intro we went on an easy walk through the off piste. After a few hours it soon became a late lunch and a ski back to the apartment…a beer on the way though of course!

The rest of the week was taken up with some easy tours and a day of piste skiing to search out the area. 6 full days of beginners touring needs to be split up we felt. Our finale was a tour around a mountain to bring us back to the piste and end of a great day.  Funny how we seemed to always end up in the apre ski bar.. I wonder why? Eating out was great too, we can sample all the little local restaurants, not that there are many in Zauchensee but, a trip down to Altenmarkt was a must one evening.  We were very well looked after by Karen and Nigel Thompson from Appartment Strimms. Nigel ensured that the local ski hire shop helped us arrange the correct gear. Touring skis, bindings, skins and boots for a week for 89 euros? that’s a crazy deal! Nigel has been in the area for a good few years and knows the surrrounding area like the back of his hand! We have already booked next year, and a kit list will follow for those who are interested.

What seems to be clear is that this week made a real team bond with everyone, its not just about how fast we could get around, it was about how we worked together. That’s teamwork.

Each day we needed to be clear on any avalanche risks and make sure we avoided any dangerous areas so after our morning coffee and discussion on the route, off we went for an adventure!

Freedom…Away from the mad pistes..

Now that’s touring…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lunch in the sun!..So join us next year 2018 and find out just what skiing is all about…Its not just how you make a turn..just GET OUT THERE!

Thanks to;  MARTIN – HELEN – STEVE – BELINDA – SIMON for making this one of the best ever World Class Skiing adventures!

P.S. Fancy trying this in the Andes?

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Socks and a cup of great coffee….Point 6 is what it’s about.

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How to improve your ski performance…with a pair of POINT 6 SOCKS..!

Its been some time since Christmas, and with great skiing since then I thought I would write a little piece about my Christmas Pressie….a pair of Socks…

A good old time honored gift its what your mother would always put into your Christmas sack if there was nothing else she could think of. Well, my new pair of socks are awesome!

POINT 6 SOCKS Ski Light.

Light terry loop cushioning in the shin and under the foot offers fantastic comfort and warmth. This is the most versatile weight of ski sock- not too thick, not too thin.

Wool 62% Spandex 2% Nylon 36%

I’ve worn some socks in my time, but, these are quite definitely the most comfortable and warm socks I’ve ever had! Good cusioning and just the right amount of paddding in the right places. Gives a good feel in the boot. It also makes you ski better!

If you haven’t got a pair yet, bag some soon, they are just superb! I don’t often rave about my socks, but these have fired me up to shout about them.

As for the Coffee? well, you will need to find out on the next blog just how good coffee can taste on the side of a mountain…whilst wearing my socks, of course.

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The Sunny Ski Safari !

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The Mayrhofen Ski Safari, and the added bonus of wall to wall sunshine!

We had such a fantastic week in Mayrhofen. In fact, all the Ziller Valley. With the great links from resort to resort via the transportation links available all on your lift pass!

Starting as always on the Penken (Mayrhofen area) and spending two days exploring the area we managed to find our ski legs on various pistes within the resort.

Mayrhofen boasts of a great town life and lots of entertainment, if that’s what you want, or, our Hotels provided both evening music and dancing if that’s your thing or return to your room for a quiet nights sleep! your choice. The Neue Post hotel provides a top quality wellness area which is perfect for easing those tired legs after a day’s worth of ripping the mountain up.

Our great team this year involved, Barbara, Louise, Belinda, Nikki, Jess and Tracy. Great company thank you.  We had a ski agenda, and that’s to leave the week with some new found skills to improve your ski performance and I think we did that judging by your smiles!

After skiing the Penken area we swiftly moved onto the Kaltenbach arena which links up to Hoch Fugen, This hosts some amazing skiing with more than enough to keep us occupied for a few days if we so wished. Our plan was to get up to the Hintertux glacier, however, after our visit to the Arhorn Ski area it was soon apparent that with so few people in that part of the resort and superb snow it was to become our favorite area to ski. In fact, its the locals mountain of choice. Home of some of the worlds most famous ski racers. There was plenty of race training going on down the black run whilst we were there.

It’s always the ‘carving’ skills which we are all focused on. After a few days warming up, carving seemed to take precedent whilst we had some empty pistes on the Arhorn. Perfect gradients for building confidence and learning how we can best find that early elusive edge, and keep it …..all the way round that arc!

Seen here some images of the team practicing and learning new skills to create that rounded arc on the edge. More images to be found on our facebook group page. www.facebook.com/worldclassskiing

Thanks Team for a  truly great week, See you soon!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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AVOID BANK CURRENCY CHARGES! CAXTON

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HOW TO SAVE MONEY WHILST ABROAD! USE A CAXTON fx card!

Not that this is an awe inspiring, flashy, trendy or ‘isn’t the snow fantastic’ post, Its a rather sensible look at how to avoid the card and bank charges when dealing with foreign currency.

Recently our good friends at Impulse Racing steered us towards CAXTON-fx it’s a debit card, and more, for dealing efficiently with international transactions. Basically when you use your card abroad, your bank will charge you for the transaction, even your debit card, and then take a % of the transaction to add insult ! Add up these charges over the year and you will be amazed at just how it adds up. We at World Class Skiing are, by nature of the business, paying hotels, lift companies and expenses whilst abroad. So, now having the CAXTON-fx  account we have managed to save our business a considerable amount on bank charges, in just 3 months.

Of course, you do not need a business to have a Caxton-fx card, take out a personal one.  Simply top up, when the rate is at its best, and then spend with your card abroad with no extra fees! We are lucky that we even have a designated account manager who will contact us when our preferred currency is in our favor, we can then ‘fix’ an amount at the agreed rate and use the cash when we need it!

To find out more and sign up if you wish, simply visit our bespoke World Class Skiing CAXTON-fx page by clicking the link on the right hand side below our events posts.!

 

Do it, we did and it has saved us lots!

Thanks Impulse Racing!

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HINTERTUX 2015

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HINTERTUX 2015

WHAT A WEEK!

25th Year in Tux..


 

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WCS in Hintertux, what a week we had. Amazing conditions with some great company.  At WCS we are forging ahead with some great projects and some new formats for our 2016 Hintertux Autumn ski weeks to make the week even more exciting!

The 2015 week was our 25 year in Hintertux.  We have seen some changes over the years and mainly in the shape of the glacier, at one point we thought it was disappearing rapidly. Now, with some fantastic snow management is looking the best it has for many years.

Our week was made a great success by the people who came along, thank you so much for your company and some great fun. With World Class Skiing we aim to ensure that everyone attending is part of the experience, the inclusive approach ensures we all have a great time. This year the settled weather along with superb snow conditions made everyday a day to put a smile on every ones faces.

To ensure we cater for all demands we will be developing a range of ‘ALL TERRAIN’ courses, at differing levels for abilities. With the ATC (All terrain Course) you will be sure of gaining new knowledge and skills for coping with the different areas of the mountain. Also the BDC (Bump Development Clinic) you will be able to tackle the bumps easily with coaching from the WCS trainers. These are just a few of the 2016 development programs we are preparing for you so keep an eye out for our new range of courses!

Take a look here at the conditions we enjoyed this year on the glacier.

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So, let’s see you all again next year for our pre season ski.

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WORLD CLASS SKIING and WCT new offices!

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Well, here we go, the company has just moved into its new base, an HQ which is only just above sea level….! Global warming had better not happen too quickly!

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We have taken on a fantastic space at the Plymouth University Building, Brixham Laboratory,  here in Brixham, Devon with probably the best view in the world! Apart from maybe the One at the top of Condor 3 in Bariloche, Argentina.. With the business expanding and lots of new projects to work on we decided to move up a notch and expand out!  Laura, who some of you will have already met either by email, telephone or in person is our business manager and overall number one organiser for WCS and WCT! Laura comes from a background in brand franchising and is bringing her skills to us and is my best motivator in ensuring WCS and WCT achieves its goals and keeps moving forward.

The office is part of a large laboratory building formally used by the firm ‘Astra Zenica’ as their environmental research establishment. All new and very well appointed, its the jewel in the crown for offices in the South West of the UK with an enviable position. We even get a Kayak rack!

A fully serviced space with 24/7 security and access and refreshment facilities on hand.

With this superb venue, we also have the use of training rooms, lecture facilities etc which make the venue ideal for all first aid courses and especially activity first aid with plenty of outside areas and facilities to use. With the old WW2 gun battery buildings near by making the surrounding area perfect for outdoor first aid scenarios.

When it comes to skiing, well, the outlook may not be a mountain covered in snow, but it is inspirational to look across the ocean and the boats in the bay.

So, if you  are in the South West of the UK anytime, come and see us, we would love to welcome you to the WCS & WCT HQ!

Remember to bring your Kayak, Fishing rod and swimming shorts….

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Laura, with her desk of certificates!

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ARGENTINA, TO THE END OF THE WORLD…AS WE KNOW IT.

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THE WORLD CLASS SKIING SOUTH AMERICAN ADVENTURE 2015

MY HAT GOES HOME….AT LAST.

After many months planning our Adventure finally closes on September 14 after 17 days of new experiences. It has been a whirlwind tour of Argentina and a quick hop into Chile. Taking in the vast expanse of the country from one end to the other. The visit to the 2015 INTERSKI was the ultimate excursion in Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the World…Tierra Del Fuego.

With Tony, Jenny, Dianne and Mick we toured the country and we would like to think we have seen most of it, the truth is, we have only scratched the surface.

 

Buenos Aires is quite a city, vibrant, alive and a city of diverse attitudes and viewpoints. As I have previously written our visit to the cemetery was a highlight. A cemetery? Well, its like nothing you have ever been to, its magnificent. Of course the EVA PERON mausoleum was a must.

Bariloche was our main point of interest with a few days staying in Villa Angostura, just 100 km away. Angostura is only 40 minutes from the Chilean border, however, it did take us almost 3 hours just to cross it, paperwork, paperwork and more paperwork and the obligatory stamps caused a backlog at the border. I was expecting it….

After the long wait at the border we only had time for a quick drive down the valley to a fantastic restaurant on the lake shore. The restaurant is brand new and the food was simply remarkable. You would pay top dollar in the UK for that. ..Not so top Dollar in Chile, $30 each..just amazing.

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The accommodation we logged at in Angostura was equally amazing, beautiful views over the Andes and with a swimming pool you could not keep away from….this was quite possibly the most relaxing place I have ever stayed at…beats top notch expensive mainstream hotels for sure.

Only 3 days there and we were off to Ushuaia, 2 flights to get us there, it took us 3 hours, just goes to show you how large the country is.

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Ushuaia was once used as a prison, if you were sent here, you must have been in trouble, its so cold, windswept and isolated that escape would have been almost impossible. Those days have gone now and the city relies on tourism and an electronic manufacturing industry to generate its income. Nestled in the Beagle Channel Ushuaia is a stopping off port for those not wanting to negotiate Cape Horn and the worlds worst seas.

We were not thre for the sailing however, we were there to visit the 2015 INTERSKI congress and view the worlds top ski teachers performances in high speed accurate synchro demonstrations.

Each Nation belonging to ISIA  International Ski Instructors Association heads to the congress every 4 years. Its a show case of each nation and what they have to offer the snowsports Industry. For our association, BASI, its a fantastic networking opportunity to establish good relationships with countries who will accept our qualification and so offer our members work world wide.

No trip to Ushuaia would be complete without a 3 hour boat trip in the Beagle channel to view the wild life and the splendours of the waterways. There are many small islands in the channel and many are occupied by Sea Lions and seals, this was a trip of a lifetime. Only issue is, if the boat is down wind of the Seal inhabited islands, the whiff from the seal community was pretty….fishy, to say the least!

Once completed it was time to head back to base and pack for our return the following day. A night in Buenos Aires again followed by a 14 hour flight home…….enough time for me to write this blog….

Ho yes, the hat intro, After me hanging onto a hat I was given by the Australian Demo Team in Japan in the 1995 Interski, I finally managed to return it to its rightful owner, Tina! And what a shock, Tina was the one who gave it to me in the first place!

The ROJO hat gets to go home ..at last. Look after it Tina!

With over 1000 pictures, let the few here tell the story..

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Superb skiing from the BASI team.

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The Team, enjoying the views in Bariloche….the Obligatory ‘SELFIE’ !

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Even the vintage skiers were out in Ushuaia..

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This is one way to sell your logs….I want a truck like that…much better than a new L200….

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Mick proud to show off the view!

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The Ushuaia local graffiti, more like great art…

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Argentina is soon to have a major vote for the new leader….lots of runners for the position. It all happens in October.

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Here we are en-route to Villa Angostura.. the views are amazing all the way.

 

From skiing thigh deep powder in the morning, to this in the afternoon….AYE AYE Captain!

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Jaz Lamb, our Trainers  Director and Demo team guru…

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Crossing the line to Chile.
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Typical Ushuaia street.

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More great skiing…
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Happy faces..
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Im sure this chap is quite fed up with the crazy visitors..

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And in Bariloche, we met up with BASI Trainers, Lesley and Mike, working hard for a month running the gap course..

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And me, and a Quilmes….my favourite beer…

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Finally, my hat goes home. I swapped it for my BASI hat at the 19195 Interski in JAPAN. It was the last thing I picked up before I left home, hoping I could get it back to its owner…and quite amazingly, I did! By chance, Tina who gave me the hat was the one I handed it back to…20 years later. Maybe one day it might end back with me in Brixham….in another 20 years time..most travelled Interski hat…ever..Look after it Tina!

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So, to finish off, this is our next destination.. Will you join us?…CHILE..Skiing on the doorstep from this picture…gourmet meals and accommodation to write home about..See you there!

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BEST-VIEW

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And the end bit.. well, Ushuaia is at the end of the world as we know it..but I feel fine………!

 

 

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BASI INTERSKI 2015 USHUAIA

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BASI DEMO INTERSKI 2015 USHUAIA!

Where do I start?, It’s a mad dash to get this information up as soon as I arrived back at the hotel this eve. It was a fantastic show from the BASI team today and a real pleasure to be here with the World Class Skiing Posse to support the Team.

This is how my day started…..with a sunken boat in the Beagle Channel….

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After that it got a bit more exciting!

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It’s widely acknowledged here that the professionalism of BASI and level of performance has been the talk of the town this week, and INTERSKI!

The team did the association proud and Andi McCann delivered a solid performance from the team, and also a fantastic audio presentation on how BASI exports fantastic ski teachers world wide. Well done Andi, brilliant job!

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see the youtube video here…

 

There is so much to say here, but I feel that with the time restraints on getting this information up there I have decided to let the pictures do the talking. The weather today was variable to say the least! Overcast with a blisteringly cold Antarctic wind howling across the slope, as it only can be…..at the end of the world….

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One things for sure…this’ boat ain’t sinking…

 

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Bienvenido a Chile

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Bienvenido a Chile,

That’s what the sign says!

Back again, same sign, better weather and great company! Last time I was here was in 2010 with Rob, BASI gap buddy from Australia.

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Today our visit to Chile was a slight challenge. The border control is not the quickest nor easiest at the best of times, but, today it was just madness! 2.5 hours just to get the relevant papers stamped at the Argentinian
border. Crazy paperwork for a beurocratic system which seems to employ so many people for what could be a much simper job. Ah well, at least we got to Chile, eventually. 

Seen here, a happy? border control chap, his job is simply to give out or take in, a single piece of paper with your total passengers on board. How mind numbing!

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The boys at the top. and of course, the girls from Ski Bartlett! girls-bartlett

 

 

 

 

 

 

We had just enough time to drive about 50 kms to what was the most fabulous restaurant. Superb views, superb food and a great welcome from the staff…Think I will be going back there… They have several rooms to rent out in this idyllic setting and a private mini bus to escourt you to the nearest skiing area. So, this is on my next visit for the 2016 adventure! Take a look at this for accommodation.

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Now this is something special. Will you be joining us in 2016?

The route to Chile…

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How the other half live in Chile.

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However, regarding the other half… the Porche parked outside our accommodation this evening has a Chilean number plate, this is a rare care to be seen in Argentina…and just shows how their economy is thriving.

Hey ho, Soon to be taking our Flight to Ushuaia, where all our buddies are already for the event next week.  Today we all said how easy it would be to live in Chile, it has a real, feel at home, sense about it, infact, we got into conversation with a local chap today, he sells fish farming equipment to Scottish businesses, it is amazing how little distance apart we have with each other….. it’s a small world alright.

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Bariloche and cerro Catedral 2015

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At last an internet connection!

So far just the odd posting on Facebook and the very intermittent tweet…..not enough to show the splendour.

The skiing keeps getting better here in Bariloche. The sun is out and it’s just amazing, views, snow and the company.

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Day 4 and the adventure is well under way with plenty of fine weather and great conditions. Apparently the area has suffered some pretty bad weather of late and now the sun is out everyone seems to be basking in the fine conditions.

As we have a private transfer every day from the centre of Bariloche to Cerro Catedral and all the skiing, the driver, Silvio, has kindly offered to show us the beautiful surroundings of Lau Lau and the magnificent views. I remember taking my hire car around this area several years ago and it left an amazing in print in my memory of the breathtaking views of the lake. It is said that this view, seen here later in the blog, is one of the National Geographic most wonderful views in the world! Now that’s worth seeing.

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In contrast to our free ski week and our ‘ what time for coffee’ attitude, the BASI trainers working here for BASI and PEAK LEADERS running the gap course for ski teachers, Lesley and Mike, have a full month of training to do and are doing so in the BASI professional way.  We chatted about just what an amazing thing skiing has done for us all, enabling us to visit the most fantastic countries in the world, we are lucky…..

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Jenny and Dianne basking in the Patagonian sunlight….with Patagonia jackets! quite fitting don’t you think?

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Mick taking it all in..

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Tony with the most magnificent view as the backdrop…

It seems that with our Argentinian adventure that we do not have enough time to see everything, but we are giving it a good go, so much to see and so little time to see it.

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Lesley me and Mike, the hard working ones are in a blue suit…..

Departing tomorrow for Villa Angostura, we will have the next 2 days relaxing and a possible day trip to Chile, with a stamp in the passport to prove.

Here below we have ‘TWEEDLE DEE AND TWEEDLE DUM’ they are the guardians of the lake…looking north, they must be waiting…for something.

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Empty pool, empty life guard…..dont jump its concrete! !


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Its been an interesting time here in Bariloche, my last visits have mainly been alone and I have managed to see the other side of the city, and I have already written about this in past blogs, 2010!

Mick, Dianne, Jenny and Tony, are certainly getting the most out of South America, they make a superb travelling team with great evening conversations and daytime snow fun its certainly a trip to remember!

Its time to pack and move on, onto Villa Angostura, the question on every ones mind…..is this the birthplace of the bitters? Lets find out.

And finally me, the poser…

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