You may get the impression by now that I LOVE Chamonix.
I can't get enough of the place.
In November when I was offered a job with EpicTV, the fact that the company is based in Chamonix helped me make my mind up. I took it.
EpicTV are the fastest growing providers of action sports content in the world. We work with the best athletes and film makers capturing their latest adventures. We have 15 people working from the Chamonix office, 4 in Helsinki and 6 London, where I work from. My job is to build commercial partnerships with mainstream press and sports specific sites. Basically anyone with a lot of visitors looking for awesome content.
Between January 25th - 30th I was in Spain on The Telegraph and SEAT adventure trip. I arrived at work on Friday 31st to hear "we're all going to Chamonix on Tuesday". No need to unpack then!
There was no time to get excited though, I still had loads to organise for the BrewDog London to Bristol ride starting at 5am the following day. The BrewDog ride went like a dream, just enough time to catch up on some sleep before heading off to Chamonix on Tuesday evening.
The London office is only 4 months old and the team is growing each month. A trip to Chamonix was a great opportunity for all us to get to know each other a little more as well as meet the team based there. I sat with Sean and Andy on the plane, we ordered beers and I set to work on writing my next blog.
We arrived in town at midnight. I headed straight to Le Pub to meet my friend and fellow mountaineer, Jason. He welcomed me with a big hug, and 3 drinks. Thanks Jason!
Spent the day in the office meeting the Chamonix crew. After meetings and chats via skype, it was great to finally meet in person and discuss things in more depth. For an extreme sports company, the vibe in the office is in line with what you'd expect. Everyone working on a Apple Macs, some hungover, some not. Most wearing some sort of hat. There's a Mountain Hardware downsuit, a film studio, EpicTV t-shirts galore and 3 crazy dogs.
The clouds were low in the valley all day and after lunch it started to snow heavily outside. At work and in the mountains, I loved it.
At 6pm we headed to The Monkey Bar for happy hour and some cute dog action.
Next up was dinner at a local Savoyarde restaurant called Caleche, followed by bar and nightclub. Bed at 4am, all in the name of team bonding of course...
Every Thursday we have a company meeting on Skype at 7:30am. This Thursday was no exception and there were no allowances for anyone silly enough to have had a lot of fun the night before.
Up at 7am, I pulled back the curtains and the view made any temptation to feel hungover disappear immediately.
Blue skies, sunshine and fresh powder.
After the meeting, we got the ok from our boss to go skiing and headed to the ski lift at La Flegere. Jools, who lives in Chamonix was in charge of myself, Andy and Sean. They were all snowboarding and I was on skis. On the chair lift there was a lot of chat about powder, off piste, jumping off things... looks like I was going to learn to ski off piste then! Gulp
Off the beaten track
That's the way to put adventure back into skiing! It was warm and everyone was smiling. I loved it. We had so much fun bombing down this one small stretch of mountain for a while. I tried a few things out and got the hang of it, I think.
After lunch we did a few more runs but I was starting to feel tired, and with that less confident. I fell about 6 times on a tiny stretch of mountain, time to call it a day.
Back in the office, we had a few more meetings and said my goodbyes. Great to really feel like part of the team now.
Tonight's dinner was with fine company. Jason, James, Alison, Richard and myself. Top mountaineers, skiiers and lovers of the outdoors. We went back to Caleche this time opting for Raclette and meat cooked on the stone washed down with Sancerre. Wonderful memories.
I had an early flight from Geneva which got me back home in London by 11am on Friday morning.
Being my first one, I have nothing to compare it to, but I think as far as they go this was pretty awesome. Thanks EpicTV.