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6/20 We hiked today from Courmayeur, Italy to La Vachey, Italy.

The trail was the steepest yet, and in sections, it was easier to climb using just your toes,

rather than trying to get your heels on the ground.  We were supposed to take a balcony trail

after the Rifugio Bertone, but instead, we continued up for a little more steepness.

                   

ABOVE - Stephane helps Verena with her pack - plus some crazy clouds.

                   

ABOVE - Escargot involved in a pretty wild mating ritual

                   

Wildflowers galore on today's hike

                   

BELOW - Judith enjoying a great hike

                   

                   

                   

ABOVE - We're still going up?

                   

Looks like a lunch spot to me

                   

More wildflowers

                   

BELOW - We're going to take a little diversion now. To avoid another 3000' of climbing and descent

our guide decided to do a little cross-country and find another way to our destination.

                   

As always, there were plenty of new flowers to ponder.

                   

                   

Yes, we're talkin' serious cross-country.  We did find a couple of cow paths.

                   

Oh, good, Bernadette recognizes the bridge!

                   

                   

It's an absolute SEA of FLOWERS!

                   

                   

Whew! We made it to Lavachey and Philippe is waiting for us!