Baked Alaska

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Etang d'Astou

Etang d’Astou


7/8 June 2017. A good Baked Alaska should have a frozen centre which melts in the mouth. I’ve just discovered how appropriate this recipe is for a hot day in the Pyrenees.


Valier seen from the Cabane de Turguilla

Valier seen from the Cabane de Turguilla

Sunset in the Turguilla valley, above Guzet-Neige, Ariège

Sunset in the Turguilla valley, above Guzet-Neige, Ariège


By the time we arrived back at the car at the end of the walk we were wobbly and thirsty; for two days the sun had been beating down on us. The thermometer read 27 degrees Celsius. But, despite all the signs of summer we had been blocked by the snow.


Etang d'Aube seen from the pic Seron

Etang d’Aube seen from the pic Seron


We had started the walk at the col d’Escots on the GR10, high up on the Guzet-Neige ski resort (Ariège) and stayed overnight in the free hut at Turguilla. The next day we looked down from the Pic de Seron (2440m) to where our path disappeared into a snow-filled ravine. No crampons: no way. Scrambling over big stone blocks and across snow to a ridge, we tried a different route, being thwarted by more cliffs and more snow. After several attempts we turned round.


Searching for a way through

Searching for a way through


But that’s not the end of the story, because on the way back we met another walker. He was determined to find a way through so, armed with our information, he tried another tactic, crossing the head of the cirque above the snow. And got through.

Forget the sun, forget the rising temperatures, there is no better tool for melting snow than your tongue.

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