Cogne: The beginning!

On Saturday all the candidates met up in Geneva, coming from various countries in Europe to head over to the third stage of The Mountain Academy 2. The plan was working like a Swiss watch until we heard that Bojan, one of the 9 candidates, missed his flight the same morning. It was bound to happen at one point so not a big deal as he joined us later the same day. We drove east-bound – 3 countries in just a few hours – Switzerland, through to Chamonix, France then towards final destination Cogne, Italy. But before that we stopped at Mountain Hardwear’s headquarters to get some gear for the trip. With temperatures of about -15 degrees celcius we figured down jackets, gloves and other necessities would be handy for the week…

This coming week could be summed up in 2 words: I C E -climbing. That’s the focus on this third stage of The Mountain Academy 2, and Cogne is ideal at the moment. Some say ice conditions haven’t been this good in 20 years!  Local Hardman and Mountain Academy guide Manu Ibarra tell us on the way up that old school climbing equipment was produced here in the 30s, both for the quality of the steel but also for the great climbing around here. Approaching the hut and looking at the frozen falls on each side of the van we could see why…

We all had high expectations arriving, and it was great to meet up again with the guides and candidates. After a 6 course meal (check the vid below), Italian style, we all felt pretty… full… so a quick brief about Sunday’s events was given before going to bed.

Ciao for now & wait for more news!


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