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Just back from a great trip round the Dents du Midi range in the Swiss Valais region. This is the most westerly massif in Switzerland and on the whole not too many people visit the area. This in itself is surprising because it is absolutely stunning, the seven jagged summits of the Dents du Midi provide a great centerpiece for this 'tour'. We enjoyed blue skies, alpine flower meadows, marmots and chamois, and of course views to France and Switzerland. The accommodation was excellent with warm welcomes from our hosts in the tiny cliff top village of Mex, at the Alpage de Chindonne, the Refuge de Bonavau and the Auberge de Salanfe. I was particularly amused to learn that the cat at the Bonavau is a 'tres bonne apliniste'. Apparently, Pimpernell the cat climbed the highest peak in the Dents du Midi range, the Haute Cime, at the tender age of four months. Since then she has enjoyed many alpine ascents in the area. If you have a cat with similar alpinist tendencies I would love to hear from you! To be honest I should have guessed she had natural ability after seeing her climb the outside of the hut to reach my bedroom, via the lower terrace, the window shutters, the drain pipe and then my balcony before clawing her way through the open window. I had a great time with Pete and Trish, and Anne and Nigel. It was so nice to meet up with the guys again and on this occassion I got to meet thier 'better halves' as well.

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