A blustery day on the LakeM

A blustery day on the LakeM
A blustery day on the Lake

Monday, October 17, 2011

Breathless at 11000 feet

We passed through the Sea of Clouds at 2,600 meters and continued our journey to the top of the gondola lift...Punta Helbronner, at 3,462 meters or 11000 feet above sea level. We were all a little dizzy as we walked around the viewing platform but the view was spectacular. The sky...the bluest of blues. The sun...bright and sparkling off the summits. To the north, a glacier descending into Chamonix, France. To the east, the summits of Monte Bianco and to the south, Gran Paradiso in Italy. Half of the paltform was in Italy and the other half in France. Skiers and riders left from here to ski down to La Palud at the bottom of the gondola or down the glacier into Chamonix. Mountaineers left from here to make the ascent to the summit of Monto Bianco. Sarah Colombo's boyfriend, Francesco and his brother made the ascent to the summit just last year. It was literally breathtaking! In the Valle d' Aosta area, there is along history of mountain climbing. From the gondola platform we could see tne Matterhorn or Cervino as well as Monta Rosa, which is second to Monte Bianco.

It's difficult to imagine the magnitude of these peaks but down in the village of Courmayeur, the mountains seemed to surround us.

This beautiful valley is long and narrow, vineyards stretch up the sides and the steep slopes are heavily wooded with many fir and balsam trees. Most houses are made of wood with flat, roocks on the roofs....all very quaint and picturesque.

With castles situated at strategic points throughout the valley.

We spent the night in a beautiful, little B&B and the next day headed back to Novara to watch a series A, professional soccer match....Novara vs. Bologna. The security was tight but the passion was palpable. The Bologna fans kept up the chanting, shouting and singing for the entire game. The hometown Novara fans shouted insults at the Bologna fans and pleaded with their team. What a fun experience ! Next stop.....Lake Como.

Location:Valle d' Aosta, Monte Bianco, Courmayeur, and Aosta

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