Montgenèvre to visit Andy Carr.

Montgenèvre to visit Andy Carr.

On Friday, the 20th of January, 2023, we took a trip to visit Andy of Spoon Customs. You'll be familiar with him and his story if you've read edition two of our publication.

This year's big goal is to travel, meet the makers and do video podcasts to help share their stories and learn more about them.

Why Montgenèvre? Andy explains it all in our podcast, but for a quick summary:

"I ran away to France, initially thinking I'd just go for a couple of months and get some head space. But once I got there, I started driving a transfer bus for a friend's company, and I would pass all these landmarks from some of the world's top pro-cycling events. I had found myself pretty much by accident in the best cycling area in the world, just above a town called Montgenèvre. The Tour de France has started and finished a stage there, and the Giro came through my village. And if you roll down that mountain, you're then on a road that stretches all the way to Venice, and everybody who's anybody in bike manufacturing is along that road. It was great to be near all those craftspeople making the kind of bikes I wanted to build. So I just got my head down and got to work." - Extract from Ed.2

Andy lived in Montgenèvre for three years, and it's where it all started for him. He invited us out for a podcast as he was shooting a short film for some adverting for his bikes, so we were up for some adventure!

Our drive from Turin Airport to Montgenèvre.

Jack and I left Edinburgh at 5 am to fly to Brussels to catch a connecting flight to Turin, Italy, where we rented a car to drive to Montgenèvre, France. The drive there was incredible! To get to Montgenèvre, it's around 1 hour and 20 minutes; for most of the journey, you are driving between the mountains.

Go Montgenèvre 

We arrived in the late afternoon. Andy was waiting to greet us and take us to the beautiful accommodation he was staying in, thanks to Ben Hodson, who runs Go Montgenèvre with his family. Ben is a good friend of Andy's and has also worked with him for years, helping with marketing and advertising. 

Andy, Jack and I chatted for a few hours and found that we all had lot's in common, and it felt like we had been friends for a lot longer than a few hours! 

Montgenèvre is an idyllic, charming French village bathed in 300 days of sunshine a year. Its height means the snow comes earlier and stays later. Montgenèvre has all the facilities of a modern resort whilst retaining its traditional enchantment And so, you can't come to Montgenèvre and not ski?!

Jack and I have never tried skiing, and to be honest, the thought was giving me butterflies! However, I was persuaded to try. I wanted to do something out of my comfort zone and have some fun!

That Friday night, we headed down to the local ski hire, Altiski and got our ski's, ski boots and helmet, and we were ready to book our ski lessons first thing in the morning! (We also had to pick up a few pieces of clothing as we weren't prepared!)

ESF Montgenevre

We all woke up early the following day to head down to the ski center to book a lesson, but we arrived too early (nerves or too keen?), so we headed for a coffee and a pastry in a local cafe/restaurant called Le Graal Café.

Two hour Ski Lesson with Stefano

Our two-hour lesson with our instructor Stefano was incredible! If you ever want to try out skiing, Montgenèvre is the place to learn! We were so impressed by the lesson. Stefano was fantastic, patient had good English and gave us the confidence to spend the day on the slopes with Andy! I would 100% recommend it.

Full day on the slopes!

We stayed on the slopes all day... we were the last people to leave!

Thanks to Andy for continuing to be our helping hand all day. There were quite a few falls and funny moments. Jack and I had the best day with Andy, learning a new skill, trying local drinks and creating core memories.

The Trio Restaurant

We ended our day in a local restaurant called 'The trio’ and had a well-deserved dinner and drink to celebrate a new skill learnt, new friendships and being a small business and all that comes with it.

We ended the night with this quote "There are big ships and small ships. But the best ship of all is friendship." 

Podcast day!

Sunday, we were very sore after our ski experience! So it was a great day to set up and do our podcast, which was 2 hours and 40 minutes long. You'll see our little travel lights cut out early... we need to find better ones; any recommendations?

We are also working on a better set-up with the mics for travel; however, it's all a learning game, but the main thing is we are out there, sharing these incredible and inspiring stories!

Here’s a link to this Accommodation

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