Flight: France, Andorra, Spain: Winter Pyrenees

There is a little section of mountains, akin to a “range” though lacking in distinct identity as the name implies in America, that scares the crap out of me. Its just so…harsh, and there is no good way to get out in the event of an emergency. As such, I have only nibbled at the edge, and so far hadn’t really gone over it. It is a bit to the west of Pic Carlit in France, with an altitude of 9,583 feet, which isn’t enough to impress me by the numbers. As you’ll see in the pictures, it was rugged enough. Waiting until the mountains were as unforgiving as possible with deep snow and cold temperatures, I decided to fly over it.

For some reason, despite the deep snow, penetrating cold, and harsh nature of the mountains when they are prone to avalanche, I find the entire experience peaceful and pleasant, almost a Zenist moment in the airplane, which lasts until I can’t feel my face, hands, and feet, then I head home. I don’t get the same peace flying over the same terrain in other seasons.

Ascending into the Pyrenees….Spain
IMG_0006
IMG_0018-Edit
IMG_0051

Andorra
IMG_0259 IMG_0321 IMG_0325 IMG_0359 IMG_0394 IMG_0402 IMG_0416 IMG_0489

France
IMG_0528 IMG_0577

Snow drifts….blowing up the side of the mountain against gravity.
IMG_0608

Looking into the Midi-Pyrenees region of France.
IMG_0628

Rugged section I have been reluctant to fly over. Here we go….
IMG_0647 IMG_0703 IMG_0821 IMG_0995 IMG_1033

Back in Andorra. This image is practically pornographic.
IMG_1084 IMG_1156 IMG_1275 IMG_1291 IMG_1343 IMG_1375

Crossing the border back into Spain.
IMG_1562

People seriously tear up the Pyrenees with backcountry skiing. I cannot believe the places people climb to. No matter how remote….there are usually some tracks going down it.
IMG_1599

Descending into La Cerdanya.
IMG_1671

Where I descended from.
IMG_1696 IMG_1758 IMG_1827