Snow & Rock Back Country Ski Adventure with Squash Falconer & Freeflo

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I love skiing and I’m passionate about mountaineering.  A few years ago I started ski touring (skiing across open country, walking uphill on skis as well as skiing downhill).

For me ski touring is the perfect sport – I can enjoy the thrill of skiing and get my kicks climbing the mountain too.  Attaching skins to my skis allows me to head deep into the back country, away from the ski resorts and lifts, to reach beautiful places and ski untouched powder.

IMG_8117I’m based in Tignes, France and last winter I was lucky enough to meet ski coach Floss Cockle from Freeflo ski.  Floss is an incredible skier and coach and she has shown me some of the amazing back country that is right on my own door step in and around Tignes.  Heading off the beaten track means that you have to have a good understanding of the mountains, the conditions and your own skiing ability.  I have some knowledge, but with 19 ski seasons under her belt Floss’s skill and experience has been invaluable and has taken my back country skiing experience to the next level.

Squash & Floss from FreeFlo

Right at the end of the season, this year, both fit from a winter of touring and skiing, Floss and I did a day that blew my mind.  We hiked for 4hrs to the top of the North face of the Pramecou.  Floss had been watching the weather and conditions closely and knew that it was a good day to ski the face.

IMG_0387Having never skied anything as steep, I was so nervous!  However, the conditions were good and I trusted Floss’s judgement about my skiing ability.  I watched, holding my breath as she skied the couloir perfectly and as she came to a stop my heart thundered in my chest, it was my turn!  I dropped into the deep, steep powder and felt the most incredible surge of adrenaline through my veins… I was skiing the North face of the Pramecou!!!  And it was amazing.

As I skied towards Floss, with the biggest grin on my face I shouted, “I love this.  This is incredible, we need to share this with everyone!”

IMG_0430And as we walked out and headed back towards Tignes we came up with a plan to do just that.

Squash & Floss in the back country

We’ve teamed up with Snow & Rock to bring you two unique one-week off piste and back country adventures in Tignes, France in January and April.

Anyone who books will get a £200 voucher for Snow & Rock!

We’d love you to join us in the mountains next season and take your skiing to the next level.

If you are an intermediate skier who wants to do more off piste and go into the back country then this trip is for you.

See all details below and if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch – [email protected]

Floss Ski TouringDates:
Sunday 8th -15th Jan 2017
Package Price £1645*

Sunday 16th 23rd April 2017
Package Price £1745*

* Prices may vary subject to availability.

Package includes:

  • £200 Snow & Rock in store voucher
  • 5 days elite British back country coaching with FREEFLO
  • Sharing the 5 day Adventure with Adventurer Squash Falconer
  • Avalanche and transceiver workshops
  • Adventure evening with Squash Falconer
  • Video Analysis
  • Return UK Flights
  • Resort Transfers
  • 7 nights accommodation 4* facility Chalet Hotel L’Ecrins based on sharing a twin room
  • Welcome Drinks & Canapés
  • Hot and Continental Breakfast
  • Afternoon Tea
  • 3 Course Dinner & Wine

What the package doesn’t include:

  • Insurance
  • Equipment
  • Lunch and Drinks on and off the mountain
  • Espace Killy Lift Pass

Ski Ability Intermediate Level:
If you are an off-piste skier with varying success then this course is for you. If you can link turns without traversing, at least 5–10 turns together if not more with reasonable control, style and speed, down the fall line, in most snow types then this adventure is for you.

Training for the trip:
Fitness is paramount for this ski adventure. Good fitness will make the trip more fun and you will get more out of your week! Although the course will be tailored to the group’s ability, it is highly recommended for you to get as fit as possible before you start. You must be able to ski all day if not most of the day from the first lift to the last lift with a couple of short breaks.

Getting specialist travel insurance that covers cancellation, medical and mountain rescue is highly recommended. Make sure it covers skiing off-piste beyond the ski boundary and ski touring with an instructor or guide. Buying a Carte de Neige with your lift pass in resort or online is recommended as will cover any mountain rescue without payment. You can purchase the carte de neige in resort with your lift pass for around €2 euros a day or you can purchase it on line to beat the queues for a year at . You can also purchase the Carre Neige which is a similar product:

Make sure your insurance covers skiing off piste beyond the ski boundary with an instructor or guide.

The 5 Day Adventure:
This is an off-piste and back country adventure. If the weather doesn’t allow us to ski off-piste we will brush up our technique back on the piste. This is a course where we will be passing on our experience and skills and where you can learn how to ski and move safely off-piste and most importantly to have fun while skiing.  You also will be inspired and motivated by Adventurer Squash Falconer throughout the week.

Rough Itinerary:
This an example of the 5 day back country adventure itinerary.
Night of arrival:
Welcome drink and canapés . Discuss the week ahead, plans and individual goals for the week.

Day 1:
Warm up to find our ski legs. Technical focus on: Balance and fundamental elements. Introduction to the use of avalanche equipment. Skiing mainly in Tignes.
Evening: Video Analysis
Day 2:
Technical Focus how to improve your off-piste skiing.
Evening: Avalanche Workshop
Day 3:
Technical Focus skiing on off-piste steeper terrain and variable conditions. Skiing in both Tignes and Val D’Isere
Evening: Adventure evening with Squash Falconer
Day 4:
Technical Focus ski touring/hiking. With a short tour
Day 5:
Ski tour a full day with a possible stop at a mountain hut.

Kit List– What to bring?:
Skis: Ideally an all mountain ski that is around 85-110mm under foot. Anything wider under foot than that is a lot harder to make shorter turns and to influence the ski, especially when we are skiing the bumps amongst the trees.
Boots: If you haven’t got your own boots, a downhill boot without a hike mode is fine or a touring boot.
Skins: Skins for touring.
Gloves: Gloves or mittens are fine. I normally have glove liners as well as it can get cold.
Layers: Lots of thin thermal breathable layers are always good with a waterproof jacket over the top, so you can remove them if you get hot. A buff or snood is always very handy.
Poles: Downhill poles with bigger baskets are fine. Telescopic touring poles are better for touring with.
Goggles: Goggles are a must. Ideally two lenses. If you can make sure you have a yellow goggle lens or a lens which you can put in your goggles in case of bad weather and poor visibility this will makes a huge difference.
Sunglasses: A big yes for the sunny days.
Helmet: A helmet is paramount.
Backpack: If you have a comfortable backpack 25-35 litres please can you bring it. If you have an ABS bag please bring it as it is great for off-piste but can be heavy for touring.
Avalanche Gear: If you do have a pack, shovel, probe and transceiver (digital) please bring them. If not you can rent them in resort. ABS bag is recommended.
Water bottle, flask and snacks: Nuts, dried fruit and energy bars are always handy for slow release energy instead of chocolate.
Suncream: 30+
Beanie: To keep head warm and to cover up helmet hair when having lunch!
Camera/GoPro: Good to take photos and to make movies
First Aid Kit: Small first aid kit and foil safety blanket/blizzard blanket

For more info please contact

[email protected]

We look forward to stepping into your next adventure with you.

Floss & Squash!

Floss Cockle is a BASI British International Ski Teacher L4 ISTD with a wealth of experience having taught skiing for sixteen years and completed nineteen winter seasons.