52 Weeks 52 Tests – Week 1 – New Year’s Eve in a Rustic, Remote Location

I had nothing planned for this NYE, with most of my friends returning from our remote hometown of Raon l’Etape to their bigger cities and multiple party options. I was already dreading a comfortable, yet very boring eve made of TV watching with my parents… To my surprise, I got a call from my good mate Mathieu at 5 PM, who proposed to spend NYE in an uncommon location: a refuge chalet in the Vosges Mountains.

3 hours later, we jumped in our cars for a 40 minutes of frozen drive up to the mountain pass, where we parked. We wore our boots, warm garments, hats, and grabbed our backpacks packed with food & (mostly alcoholic) beverages, lights and headlamps, and even sleeping bags for some.

After 50 minutes of a sweaty night walk up the mountain, in a gradually increasing amount of snow (up to 50 cm at the top), we reached the small wooden refuge, open and ready to host us for a good night.

The Abri de la Cantine au Roitelet (in the summer and without snow…)

We made fire in the chimney to bring the temperature from 5 deg Celsius to a more bearable 15 degrees, and started eating our basic meals that tastes like a 5 star fine dining in this context: crisps, foie gras, pate, sausages, and washed it all with a nice sequence of beer, wine and champagne.


After playing some games and cracking dirty jokes, we went outside to for the midnight countdown and watched the colored lights from the fireworks shot from the valley spread in the layer of cloud that separated it from us. We shot our own little rockets and screamed at will for the pleasure of hearing our voices echoing on the snowy rolling hills.

A pleasure that only countrysides can offer, and a brilliant, impromptu night of camaraderie.
Thanks Mat.

Next: See my trial for Week #2, or choose from the list of my #52Weeks52Trials challenge

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.