What an amazing day to photograph in Verbier! The Patrouille des Glaciers - 'PDG' to those who know it - is just such a special event to watch and I definitely recommend anyone who is in Verbier during April to go along to check out the atmosphere. It is 100% worth the early start & the 40 minute skin up to Rosa Blanche before 5am, especially when you start to see the sunlight rolling over the slopes and hundreds of weary athletes in the distance getting closer to the last uphill point of their excruciatingly long expedition from Zermatt to Verbier, over night. The sudden change from looks of exhaustion to that of determination and excitement as they realise that the end is finally in sight is spectacular to see. There is a really amazing sense of community as supporters line up to shout words of encouragement as the athletes pass which has sort of got me fixated on the idea of one day taking part in this phenomenal challenge too.
I left home at 4am, headed to the lift station in the dark. I was extremely excited and apprehensive to see what this event was all about and particularly to get up there to watch the sun coming up over the mountains. This was the highest point I had ever been on the mountain to see the sunrise and was hoping to get some amazing photographs (which I hope don't disappoint!) 'PDG' race day is one of the only days in the whole of the season when Televerbier open the lifts up at this ridiculous time in the morning to let you up onto the mountain (normally you would be skinning up!) so I really wanted to make the most of it.
Everything on the mountain was even more breathtaking than usual that morning. The mountain air was so cold on my face that I was no longer tired and as I skied down I felt like the only person in the world, with the most beautiful views and lighting that kept stopping me ever two minutes so I could take another photo. It was lucky that I had my special pair of silk liners on as it was absolutely freezing skiing down with my camera out in front of me.
Here are some of my photos from an incredible morning. I hope you enjoy looking at them and can get a sense of just how captivatingly beautiful the mountains were that day. Hopefully they will inspire you to get up there to see the 'PDG' - an honestly life changing experience!