• Caitlin Kennedy

How not to stack it

The Ice rink of Val d’Isere appears to have extended beyond its confines onto roads, sides streets and even the snowfront, where a pipe leak caused the ground to become akin to a treadmill. After far too many slides, stacks and arse-over-tit moments, I decided it is high time we take charge and get a grip of this icy armageddon. As the powers that be insist on us living in a “winter wonderland”, (read treacherous pavements of death and destruction), I’ve put together a guide on how to retain balance and dignity when treading the slippery slopes of Val d’Isere. The official word is to wear crampons, but where’s the fun in that?

Here are 6 alternative ways of getting around:

Rediscover the art of crawling

Return to your roots and learn by immersion that 4 limbs are better than 2. With all that surface area, the increased friction is sure to have you sticking to the ground like a fly to a spider’s web. To avoid the inevitable chill to the hands and knees, consider investing in some extra pairs of shoes to wear on said body parts. Alternatively, go full hobbit style and allow your skin to become the shoes.

Make like this guy and become a goat

Chamois are in the goat-antelope family and they seem to do pretty well on the snow and ice here. So get all Nicolas Cage about it and be a goat until this lethal ice subsides. Thomas Thwaites has already done the graft of the work by inventing prosthetics and a specialised external stomach that allowed him to eat grass whilst he was a goat. The only downsides to the new lifestyle apparently is being accepted by the goats you choose to live with. According to Thwaites, “the goats didn't seem to like me very much, sometimes I thought they were really going to try and attack me. And they have particularly dangerous horns.”

The art of flight

Convince everyone in your company to group together all of your hard earned tips to buy a jetpack. Or start a crowdfunder to help you on your way, as the €132,000 price tag might be slightly more than this week’s guests believe your service is worth. Then, with the power of flight under your belt (literally), soar over all the common folk and laugh as they slip and slide like characters from Wacky Races. If you are of the DIY sensibility or have a handiman to hand, perhaps think about building your own jetpack. Several fire extinguishers and some duct tape should do the trick, although the trip may not be a return journey.

Mush mush

Gather together the dogs of Val (see our instagram @valmountainecho for ideas on the best ones to nab) and fashion yourself a sled out of all the empty champagne crates leftover from NYE. Walking will be a thing of the past.

Antifreeze every patch of ice you come across

You’ll be doing your good deed for the day by preventing future slippages. And you’ll have a barrel of laughs watching your arch nemesis die a slow and painful death.

Just don’t leave the house

If you don’t go outside, you can’t slip on ice. Simple as.

So there you have it. Foolproof ways to have to avoid breaking bones on the ice and also have fun at the same time.

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