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VERBIER - PURE ENERGY - James Cove, Verbier
Sunday July 16, 2017 - Email this article to a friend

It's the snazzy marketing slogan for the Swiss resort this summer, but is it true? PlanetSKI has spent 4-days testing the claim.




DAY ONE 

"The key thing is to keep controlled while focusing on small movements and the task in hand. Keep moving and stay balanced," said the mountain guide, Jean-Marc Krattiger, to me.

I was inching along the final ridge to the summit of Mont Fort at 3,330m.

It would not have been technically difficult for an experience climber, but to me it was a challenge. 

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4-hours or so earlier I'd set off from the base of the glacier with a harness, plenty of rope and a positive attitude.
  
It was a reasonable challenging physical climb and certainly a mentally taxing one for me. 

But more of the Mont Fort climb later - that came on the second day.  

My first day was a walk in the park by comparison. 

Or rather a ride on a thin bit of metal wire stretched over a 120m gorge with a 30m drop to the bottom.

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Normally when I arrive in a ski resort late in the afternoon I check into my hotel, unpack and head to a bar.

Sometimes I just head to the bar. 

Not this time round. 

Destination Madzeria - towards the end of the valley.  

We were going on a zip line. 

It was a gentle start to our 4-days of thrills in Verbier and a way for Jean-Marc to check us out before our attempt to climb Mont Fort.   

Could we put on a harness?  Did we have a head for heights? Were we physically fit enough? Did we have the right attitude for the challenges ahead?  

And this is what is ahead and what I will be blogging about over the coming days:
  • Day Two - A climb of Verbier's iconic peak, Mont Fort.
  •  Day Three - A 6-hour plus high-altitude hike to the Corbassiere glacier with a vertical descent/ascent of 2,000m.
  •  Day Four - A full on session of downhill mountain biking in one of the steepest courses in this part of Switzerland.

The zip wire proved to be a bit of light fun - though one can't stop doubts creeping in as one prepares to leap into thin air suspended on piece of wire over a deep gorge.

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Above all though it was great fun.

We all passed the tests.


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Verbier is billing itself as a resort for thrill and chills as we reported earlier on PlanetSKI:

And much can be accessed by its new VIP pass, Verbier Infinite Playground:

And after the zip line we carried on to the end of the valley to see the Mauvoisin dam - people base jump off the dam.

But I'm glad to say that was not on our itinerary and we didn't have to leap off and pull the parachute quickly.

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We just soaked in the spectacular views across the water to Italy.


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And looked back down the valley at the stunning mountain scenery.


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Mont Fort is over the mountains on the right and is the challenge for tomorrow.

Bring it on.

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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

For more information about Verbier visit www.verbier.ch/en      

For more information about the new summer VIP pass that gives access to many activities in Verbier then follow this link: www.verbier.ch/vip-pass.  

List of benefits offered by the Verbier Infinite Playground Pass for the summer 2017:

  •  Mountain lifts that are open:  Free for pedestrians + A 20% reduction on the daily rate for mountain bikers +  Post buses within the municipality of Bagnes: Le Châble - Verbier / Le Châble - Bruson / Le Châble - Mauvoisin / Lourtier - Sarreyer     
  •  Activities laid on by the Verbier/Val de Bagnes Tourist Office: Free: Brunch on a mountain pasture of Sery + Visit to the dairy at the Mille mountain pasture +  Guided visit around Verbier-Village
  • Activities at the Vollèges mountain pastures:  50% off: Via Ferrata / Horse Riding
  • Buy one get one free!:Buy one ticket and get one free for 12 major concerts in the Salle des Combins and all the 5pm concerts at the Eglise de Verbier.      
See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the mountains.

For the Spirit of the Mountains - PlanetSKI: No1 for ski news

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