Day 1: Nancroix to Refuge du Col du Palet
We woke up after spending our first night ever in our new lightweight tent. It’s still standing and there’s hardly any condensation (it’s a single-walled tent). So far, so good. When packing up our gear we quickly realised we may have brought too much stuff but in the end it all fit in our packs. The GR5 runs right past the campsite, so it’s onwards and upwards!
My pack is dragging me downwards, though. After half an hour I realise I can no longer feel my left arm due to the shoulder straps. If you are ever in the same situation: you can wedge a pair of socks or gloves under your pack’s shoulder straps for extra cushioning.
The Vanoise is stunning. Lots of other hikers though, including a family with young children and a donkey. I want a donkey too. We have lunch just after crossing a stream, then head further up. There are marmots everywhere, and this is one of the few times we actually use the Canon EF 70-300 L IS lens (do you see why the bloody packs are so bloody heavy?). We reached the refuge in the afternoon, in time to enjoy a tarte aux myrtilles while we watched the sun disappearing behind the clouds. There was also some kind of improv show with a lot of weird acting. Couldn’t understand half of it but it was brilliant.