Getting to the alps presented all the usual highs and lows. Highs such as 25,000 ft on the airplane and lows as when the airline lost my ski bag for 2 days. Serves me right according to Esmond who came out on the train and the bus. However, Chamonix is a wonderful place and i ran into several old friends one of whom had a spare set of skis. We all headed up to the hills looking for 'fresh tracks'. However, even Tonto would have had trouble as Chamonix hasn't has a dump of snow since before i arrived on Saturday. Climbing conditions on the Tacul gullies continue to be good and all the usual routes such as the Super Couloir, Gabarrou-Albinoni and the Modica-Noury continue to be in good condition, but the mixed routes such as Pinocchio are getting thinner and perhaps more like their 'normal' condition.