Another great start to the day, with a breakfast of muesli, the freshest croissants ever, home made yoghurt, and a multitude of different breads and fruits.
We had time for a quick wander around town and a team photo by a wonderful two story stone barn before being bused up the narrow winding lane to our start.
We had a slow steady climb in the morning which was meant to provide stunning views of Mont Blanc for the first time but with the weather slowly deteriorating we lost our views and discovered the variables of weather in the alps as the rain slowly built.
After three false starts on whether to put on the wet weather gear or not, we were finally kitted out but not before a few of us got wet with our indecision, lesson learnt. With weather gear on, we continued up the hill till we reached a saddle in the mountain which was the border between France and Italy.
Luckily the rain dissipated and we were able to see two countries side by side, a novelty for an Aussie.
Happy snap time, then back down the valley to have our packed lunch overlooking the beautiful vista, but the best laid plans…
The rain persisted, persistently, and any thoughts of eating in it went out the door and the decision was made to keep walking to the bus stop which was taking us into Courmayeur.
With the bus due at 1:40pm we had an hour and a half to get it so it was full steam ahead as we marched stoically on, wet weather gear being tested to the max, following the raging river down hill, mainly on narrow roads, making it to the bus stop with five minutes to spare.
Evidently we weren’t the only trekkers who had arrived at the decision we had, as the queue to board was both long, and pushy! Welcome to Italy.
Got to love Italy, just cram them on and hope for the best, as about 60 hot, wet and sweaty trekkers clambered aboard for the 30 minute drive into town.
Probably not the most scenic venue for a baguette, but beggars can’t be choosers.
Our accommodation for the next three nights is the Hotel Crampons, a lovely, typical, alpine style hotel, all balconies and bright flower boxes.
The hotel is wonderful, the staff tremendous and the rooms well appointed, roomy and comfortable.
Strangely, we found the bar pretty quickly for a beer or two, then a wander around town before dinner at a small Italian bistro.
Lots of laughs, especially when Kate vanished into the kitchen, winning new admirers left, right and centre.
With a rest day tomorrow, maybe time for a post meal drink or two back at the hotel, making plenty of noise and keeping the hotel staff most amused.
Mmmm, looks like the loud Aussies have taken over!
Gotta love the Alps, although I won’t be walking or climbing them soon. Glad to see everyone is still all together. Go well gang.