A Week of Skiing in the Alps

2016-02-02 11.16.03

Rather than a ‘5 Random Things’ this morning, I’m going to do a quick recap of my time last week in the Alps.  A group of us rented a ski chalet on the side of the mountain and enjoyed a full week in the snow, with 6 days of skiing (including one night out skiing).

Unlike in the US where most tend to go to the ski area for weekends or long weekends, in Europe it’s far more common to go for a complete week at a resort.  Everyone in France is aligned to checking in/out on a Saturday.  So services like trains are absolutely jam-packed with vacationers on Saturday both going to and from the mountains.  And lift passes and rental equipment is designed around a 6 ski day week.

In our case, the high speed TGV train was about 4 hours to a station just below the ski area, and then a quick 30 minute drive up to the mountain. We had found our place on one of the various vacation rental platform sites, however, what may have sold it for us was that they somehow actually had a drone promo video for their property. Seriously. Oh, and the property was awesome.

2016-02-06 09.34.36

Sitting across the street from the Courchevel 1550 lifts, it gave us easy ski-in/out access all week.  Courchevel is part of the larger Trois Vallées ski area, boasting numerous mountains all linked together (including the famed Meribel and Val Thorens) – and some 183 ski lifts.  Each morning we’d start from our lifts and then wander throughout the mega-resort.  By staying ‘down’ at 1550 (which is the elevation level in meters) as opposed to 1850, we’d save money over staying higher up on the mountain.  And – it means we got an extra ski run each day!



One of the advantages of a ski chalet/condo/apartment versus a hotel is being able to cook your own meals.  So each night one of the three couples rotated through for cooking dinner.  Given we’ve got a pretty food-oriented crowd (including one actual chef), there was tons of great food each night.  We also did raclette one night as well, as you could rent the raclette machine from across the street (pretty handy).


While up on the mountain we enjoyed all it had to offer – including the various places to eat mid-day.  I think lounging around on these chairs is my favorite parts of skiing in the Alps:



And, they throw pretty epic parties too, such as this one mid-mountain as the lifts wrap up for the day:

2016-02-05 16.27.24

We got pretty lucky on the weather.  While it totally crapped out the first day (actual rain), it got nice for two days, and then snowed heavily mid-week while dropping in temp quite a bit.  This gave us awesome powder the last few days, making for epic shots:


Speaking of shots, between all of us – we had an absolute crap-ton of camera gear.  I think we were in the nine action camera range, plus DSLR’s, and then three different drones.  Not to mention phone cameras, mounts, and watches.  And to be clear – it wasn’t totally my fault!


I spent the sunnier days testing out AirDog, the autonomous drone.  It worked fairly well, though there’s definitely a bit of a learning curve involved.  Once you figure out its quirks, it’s super easy to use and does a pretty solid job of things.

2016-02-05 11.31.59

Here’s a video I put together using just footage shot from the AirDog of me skiing on the sunnier days.  Had we had more sunny/powder days, I’d probably have experimented a bit more.  I shot virtually everything in the video off-piste (not on marked runs), so I’m not buzzing around lifts or things. Personally, the off-piste terrain is more interesting to me anyway (both to ski, and to film).

There are some imperfections in the gimbal and wobble, some of that to do with a non-final dampener in the unit that has a known bug (a replacement for which should arrive shortly).  Still, it’s impressive.

As noted, I’m not really the best movie making guy.  That credit goes to our resident editing expert, David, who has properly documented many of our trips (such as last year’s ski trip).  He’s cooking away on the main movie of our week there (which is shaping up to be epic), but in the meantime he put together a quick and fun video about the powder:

Once his other one publishes, I’ll plop it into a Week in Review post for ya.  It’ll be worth it!

Now we weren’t limited to just the powder.  We also toyed around in the terrain park a bit, and in particular on the gigantic pillow.

2016-02-05 14.20.58

It was like jumping into the ball pit at McDonalds as a kid, a short video here.

I was tracking all my runs using a Garmin Fenix3 HR, utilizing the Ski/Snowboard mode.  This means that it automatically pauses when you go up the lifts, and then resumes recording as you start skiing again.  It was flawless in that respect.

2016-01-31 12.15.59


Here’s all of the links to each of the ski days on Strava:

Day 1 Skiing – A Very Wet Day
Day 2 Morning Skiing – The Sun Comes Out!
Day 2 Afternoon Skiing – Friends with drones
Day 3 Skiing – A four-mountain trek
Day 4 Night Skiing: Into the darkness we go
Day 5 Skiing – The Fresh Powder Awaits
Day 6 Skiing – Pushin’ for more cushion

As for all the gear I was using, I put together this short video explaining it all. Sorry about the audio quality, somehow one of my mics got turned on in my backpack, and thus I had no battery for it.

And finally – for those of you wondering, yes, Lucy was up there.  She seemed to rather enjoy running around in the snow.  Especially chasing snowballs (though, she never could figure out where they went after they hit the ground).

2016-02-05 21.53.03

She also enjoyed sledding.  Or, at least, chasing after the sleds.  I think she was terrified of being in the sleds themselves.


With that – thanks for reading, and have a good week ahead!

Update!!! Here’s the epic video that David put together from our trip.  Also, you can check out Lillian’s blog about it as well!  Enjoy!

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  1. That guy

    I’m curious to know how the optical HR on the Fenix 3 performed in the temperatures.

    • I didn’t see any obvious issues, but since I was skiing and not running, I wasn’t focusing on HR too much. Mostly because I find that skiing HR is often so low 99% of the time it’s not worth tracking (cross-country skiing would be different of course).

    • Bob

      Hi Ray,
      I use my 920 paired with Schosche Rhythm, and it gives me crazy calorie totals(way low, 500 vs 2000 read by jabra pulse paired with Wahoo app) for a skiing session. HR rates and graph somehow overlap though.
      Calorie totals for swim mode were normal.
      Any thoughts? HR for downhill skiing very high, and I’m not doing the Alps.

    • Hmm, I was getting about 500-700c per day of skiing, which seems about right. 2,000 would be crazy high for downhill skiing (though completely normal for cross-country skiing of 8 hours).

      I think one of the challenges is that downhill skiing while painful for the muscles, doesn’t tend to be a hugely aerobic exercise. Again, tiring, but not usually out of breath every run tiring.

      Now, if you are out of breath tired each run – then the 2,000 calories would be more in-line.

    • Bob

      Hi Ray,
      Here’s the shot, I’ll upload more. Skiing hardcore, both pleasure and workout.

    • Bob

      Off Wahoo:

    • Bob

      Funny how somehow HR values match.
      Cool thing about GC is that it actually calculates downhill time, which is your actual skiing workout.

    • Struan Lownie

      I saw the same thing last week skiing in America. I think it’s because the garmin only count the time you are going downhill. So I went skiing 9-2 but got 1hr 47mins for example.

    • Bob

      Oh yes, I am.

    • ekutter

      regardless of sport, if your heart rate is below zone 1, a good calorie counter won’t credit you many calories above your base (resting) rate. It’s closer to walking, in terms of calories / minute, than harder exercise. With skiing, you are regularly going between resting and active, so your HR rarely gets much above this unless you are pounding through extended moguls. Any time you are cruising along a smoother section or sitting on a lift, you really aren’t burning much above resting.

      So it is unlikely you would be burning 2000 calories during a day of skiing.

  2. Adam

    Nice, some of those airdog shots are fantastic! Can you control the height that it’s set to film you from? It’d be cool to get some closer shots but I guess that would mean the chances of going out-of-frame would be greater, especially with an activity like skiing that can be a bit more stop-start than say running or cycling.

    One other question, does the Fenix 3 GPS tracking work well underneath the sleeve of a ski jacket? I’d be wary of putting it on over the top in case it got bashed around or somehow fell off.

    • Yes, you can control height and radius (distance from you). As well as position, and holding it still. So you can get tricky (as I did in my cycling preview) and basically make it appear to be numerous camera shots from different angles. Some of the shots in the video are medium crop on the Hero4, and some are wide. I meant to do everything in medium, as otherwise you can get props in there. But on one run (the most epic of runs), I forgot to change it back to medium. :(

      With skiing, it’s a bit more tricky because it’s harder to ‘reset’ a shot and ski back up hill (whereas with cycling I could do it again easily and also go back for the camera if need be).

      As for Fenix3, yeah, it was always under my jacket – no issues with tracking.

    • chukko

      How did Airdog handle lift cables or trees? This might be a bit more challenging than other sports (comparable to mtb singletrails).
      Also – every day there are news about legal constraints of flying drones (registration/bans..). Is it still open air for drones in France? After recent drone incident in WorldCup race i wouldnt be surprised if resorts banned their usage proactively if they become popular.

    • It’d happily plow into both cables and trees. However, it will avoid the ground.

      Realistically, smart obstacle avoidance won’t hit market until at earliest later this year. There’s many proof of concepts shown (especially at CES), but none actually shipping yet. It’s much more complex than some of the ‘staged’ demos would have you believe. Companies will get there, but not by this summer.

      France has a set of rules, but they are pretty straight forward and easy (to be far, so are the US’s outside of the registration mess). I do expect European resorts will start banning them though, following what many US resorts have done. However, they just aren’t really common yet in Europe like in the US – so, it’ll come eventually.

      The WC incident is ironic because the root cause was actually a safety system that the race organizers wanted that caused it to power-off and drop. Had the drone just been ‘left alone’, nothing would have ever happened. Go figure.

      Ultimately though, I think until we get good obstacle avoidance – I expect movies like mine will soon become impossible, as resorts will ban the technology either due to people doing stupid stuff, or because resorts don’t understand the tech. Or both.

    • Oh – and as a minor aside regarding cables/trees…It’s the main reason you see the shots higher up near the trees, so I knew I’d clear them. If I had another few days I’d get more creative/technical on those shots and plunk them down in the trees like what you saw in my early cycling Airdog preview video. But I didn’t want to hold up friends doing that (and way more work on a ski-hill than on a bike on flat terrain).

      And, it’s also why you don’t see me anywhere near lifts. I was shooting mostly right on the perimeter edge of the resort, virtually always off-piste somewhere. I also don’t really like drawing much attention to it either.

  3. Verdy

    Epic video footage, cool!

  4. Jerc

    How did you like those Elan skies?

    • They were good – zero problems with them. For me, it’s all about the boots (I have my own and have had the same for more years that I’d care to admit). As long as the ski is in the ballpark, I can make it work. But if the boots don’t fit, it’s a miserable week.

      And the poles? Well, I broke them. Totally not my fault. Mostly.

  5. Alex

    I was staying the week before you in Meribel. The discovery of the Ski/Snow program on my fenix3 was what setup our week. We spent all our days on finding the best slope to break our max speed record.
    So far we did 96 km/h on an open slope with freestyle snowboard (we did a lot better but the watch didn’t get it).

  6. Iso

    I’d like to know your every opinion about the Fenix 3 HR. Heart, navigation, altitude/barometer accuracy. I’m very eager and ready to buy one but still hesitate a bit. I don’t like the fact there is no screen-lock button like with Suunto. Especially when putting on and taking of gloves (I’m a ski/snowboard instructor) or working out with free weights.

    I hope you had a great time at the après-ski, those are the best in Europe. I miss that here (US) also the superfast lift facilities connecting resorts and mountains with each other are things I miss the most!

    Thanks for all your great reviews Ray!

    • Dr D

      @Iso – I have the Fenix 3 and it has a screen lock. A long press on the Light button brings up the ‘Lock Device’ option. I suspect the HR version will have the same feature.

  7. Iso

    Oh SHOOT!! Sorry about the picture! I thought it was going to be a profile picture. My apologies!

  8. Axel

    Very cool, some friends of mine also went to Trois Vallees last week.

  9. Iso

    @ Dr D
    Thank you so much for your quick reply and the info that there is a screen-lock. That brings me another step closer to purchasing the device. I recall to read a comparison review somewhere (I read so many everywhere) between Suunto and Garmin. I used to have an Xlander and still have the Observer titanium. Maybe it was an older Fenix version.
    Thanks again!

  10. Iso

    Now, one last question @Ray
    If I want to (pre)order a Fenix3 HR and I do so through and to support this website, that I’d get a 10% discount on the purchase?


    • Hi Iso-

      Yup, if you use the Clever Training link and add the CT/DCR VIP Program, you’ll save 10% (Garmin requires the VIP program for the Fenix3). And, you’ll get free shipping in the US. (Details: link to dcrainmaker.com)

      Note that currently REI does have a 30 day exclusive effective last Friday, so basically till March 3rd. You can still use the REI links to support the site (upper left), however, you won’t save 10% upfront, but only as part of their rebate program at the end of the year.

      Either way – I appreciate the support! Thanks!

    • Nicolas

      Too bad you don’t have the same discount with a French site 😉
      By the way living in France do you know what will be the availability date of the fenix 3 HR in France?

    • Soon…very…very…soon (regarding French/Euro DCR site).

      In fact, the first batch of test orders are on the way to me now, should arrive tomorrow. :)

    • Jorge Lacomba

      Thanks Ray!! Great news!!

    • Nicolas

      Great! both for the French/Euro DCR site and for the arrival of Fenix 3 HR in France !

  11. Iso


    Thank you so much for your fast reply. If I go for the watch and I’m totally conviced I’ll do it through your website.
    Thank you for all your great research and tips.


  12. Samtrz

    That drone video is really impressive, although the fish-eye was making me dizzy, haha!

    Looks like an amazing trip!

  13. The Eric

    Looks like you had an awesome time! Skiing in the Alps is on my bucket list! Just curious, how does the ski/snowboard function on the 920xt compare to the Fenix 3? Have you tried/tested that? Thanks.

    • Dino

      I noticed you were wearing an Apple Watch Sport as well. Are you doing any additional testing with that? Or is that just one of your daily drivers?

    • I’ve dug back in to work a review on it.

  14. Frank

    Skiing alone without avalanche gear? Or am I wrong?

    • I’m in-bounds of the ski area, and with others (just carefully out of the shots).

    • Frank

      In Europe, resorts don’t have boundaries like in the US. When you leave the piste, you’re on your own. These area’s are NOT secured like in the US. Resorts sometimes provoke avalanches in these area’s, though not allways.

      In other words: when you go off piste in Europe, you’ll need 1. a beacon/transceiver 2. a shovel 3. a probe 4. proper avalanche training.

    • Yup, I’m keenly aware. But I’m not in avalanche area. If you look closely at shots, you can see the main runs along side me.

      I just simply got early tracks. By later afternoon, those same runs were covered in tracks.

    • Frank

      I’m sorry to be so persistent, but the fact that you’re skiing next to a run doesn’t mean anything. More than 30 (!) people are killed this season alone while skiing in exactly similar conditions. Especially this season, skiing off piste is dangerous since there’s hardly any base.

      Avalanches don’t care whether a line is right next to a run or not. Remember the Dutch royal Prince Friso? He got in an avalanche about 5m away from the run (another similarity was the fact that it had been raining at the time).

      The fact that a lot of other people are doing the same is hardly an argument. The only benefit of skiing next to a run is the fact that the slope is (as the Swiss and Austrians say) “viel befahren”, which gives you a 5 degree bonus when it comes to your decision making model.

      OK, I’m gonna stop now. But I wouldn’t want this lovely blog to end because you got burried under an avalanche.

    • Sorry, but 30 people were not killed this year skiing in-bounds next to groomed runs. There have no doubt been many deaths this year in Europe due to unstable conditions beyond the run markers.

      You’re welcome to disagree, but Courchevel does a very clear & good job outlining which areas are closed/open/risky/etc… They also do extensive avalanche work, both in-bounds and out of bounds. A freak accident can happen anywhere, avalanche or otherwise.

    • bartus

      @Ray I have to whole heartily agree with Frank. Within Europe, every cm behind official markings is considered offpiste, both by insurances as well as by law enforcement. That you insist, to be out of avalanche area shows that you have no clue what you are talking about.

      Tracks on a slope are not a sign of that slope being avalanche safe!!!

      What are those others going to do for you if you are caught in an avalanche? The 90% survival rate is to be rescued within roughly 12-15 minutes. So if you don’t wear a beacon, shovel and probe, and your friends don’t either there is no chance of you being saved what so ever.

      If you want to learn these kind of things I can recommend the wepowder academy
      link to wepowder.com

      Or read the published work from Werner Munter.

      But to summarize, I think you should remove these movies from your website as they show no respect for safety and clearly leave a bad example, especially for the younger audience.

    • sarah

      There is no inbounds skiing in Europe. As soon as you leave the groomers you’re in avalanche terrain, and people do get killed just besides marked runs every year.

      Skiiers from the US and Canada get this wrong all the time, and it’s incredibly dangerous.

    • Sigh. Sorry, but that’s a silly view that you should never ski off a groomed run (and you both know it). The major resorts like Courchevel are acutely aware of avalanche risks in-bounds, because these same runs feed over/onto groomed runs. They do work in-bounds, and they mark off sections that are risky with signage. It’s really rather clear. When I see various ski patrollers open runs, and then ski down them – it’s pretty clear what is safe and not safe.

      To say that you should only ski on groomed runs is equally as silly. Just as to say there’s an avalanche risk on every snow-covered surface is silly (that shows a lack of understanding of avalanche risk). Avalanches require numerous factors to trigger (including steepness, temperature, recent weather, etc…).

      Don’t get me wrong – being avalanche aware is extremely important. And, given I grew up ski racing at an area that had extensive backcountry realm, I’m very aware of the risks of avalanches and compounding factors. But, I’m also not going to get silly about it skiing next to a groomed run at a major resort on a slope that isn’t avalanche risky. Despite how camera angles and video cuts may make things appear – this wasn’t risky terrain or risk for avalanches.

    • sarah

      You’re wrong there. You should never ski off a groomed run in Europe without a beacon probe and shovel. Period.

      Show me where Courchevel states that it’s safe to do that. I’ll wait.

      Also, don’t school me or call me silly. I may have vastly more experience with avalanche terrain in Europe that you assume. You can contact me via email and I will explain nicely if you’re open to that.

    • “You’re wrong there. You should never ski off a groomed run in Europe without a beacon probe and shovel. Period.”

      Then we’ll simply disagree, simple as that.

    • bartus

      No it’s not simple as that, as you have been stating the runs you were on were partially next to or directly leading towards regular groomed runs. This means that triggering an avalanche in that area could lead to endangerment of tourists that ride the adjacent slopes. In Europe you will be held responsible, even if you’re only crime is not possessing the proper knowledge for decision making in alpine terrain.

      Furthermore as a sports blogger with a fairly big audience you are in an example position for good behavior. So you should not encourage people or post misleading messages regarding safety in skiing or any other kind of sport.

      The only expectations are special ski runs called ski route’s. These are ungroomed, but considered relatively safe, at high avalanche risks their closed. Yet again even accessing these routes is on your own risk and there is no ski patrol checking these at the end of the day.

    • Sorry, I’m not going to continue arguing with you. You’re spinning something very simple (skiing next to a run) done by thousands of people every day at Trois Vallees into something it’s not.

    • Peter

      Great blog, and have been lurking for ages. But this thread prompts me to respond for the first time.

      As noted by all the posters above, the fact that thousands of people also ski off-piste without any equipment or training is hardly an indication that it is a good idea. Avalanche awareness is pretty low in the general population, and it is rather remarkable that accidents do not occur more often. That said, the death toll of last season 2014/2015 stands at 137.

      A very significant difference with the US is that in Europe we do not have the concept of inbound and outbound areas. They really, truly, do not secure anything that is not an official run. If you aware of that, and choose to ignore it, you are completely free to do so at your own risk. That too is a very significant difference with the US.

      It would, however, be irresponsible to create the impression to the uninformed reader of your blog that off-piste in Europe is safe as long as you are in sight of a groomed run and that some authority will have made sure that there is no danger before they opened the lifts. No such thing, I am afraid.

      PS: In your video there were slopes that looked pretty dodgy. The ridge at the start for instance, was pretty wind affected. You may think you were not in avalanche terrain, but I’d beg to differ.

    • Michael Robinson

      I’m with you Ray. I’ve boarded many times in Europe, US and Canada and the black and white view that you should have avalanche gear if you even go a few metres off piste on any type of slope is plainly nuts.

    • Frank

      Completely agree with you. I’ve made more than 1 million kilometres in my car and never had an accident. Conclusion: seatbelts are completely unnecessary.

    • Michael Robinson

      That is a silly argument. Are you seriously saying that you would never under any circumstances go a single centimetre beyond a pole on any slope on any European ski resort without avalanche gear?

    • Greg Hilton

      Once you are outside a piste marker you are off piste in Europe, there is no argument over that.

      Ray, I think you need to stop using words like “in bounds” with respect to European skiing, it simply doesn’t exist as a concept in Europe. It does in the USA.

      You are either on piste or not. The resorts DO NOT do any avalanche work that doesn’t affect piste based skiing. They may well blast a cornice that could collapse onto a piste, but they won’t clear off piste areas that are close to pistes.

      I certainly have and will ski outside of the piste markers with and without full off piste gear. However this pic is pretty sobering. Check the closeness to the markers and also all the other ski tracks.

      link to cdn.wepowder.nl

      PS Ray you seem to have some funky stuff going on in those pics with weight on the inside ski, causing some shoulder rotation which throws you off balance…

    • Frank

      It’s not a silly argument, it’s exactly the same argument you have used…

      Anyhow, obviously I have skied right next to the groomers without gear in the past. The problem is: where do you draw the line? 1m? 2m? 5m? 10m? As long a you can see the lift? Just 5 days ago, I saw a snowboarder triggering an avalanche above Les Crosets, about 5 meters from the run… Luckely he could espace, but still… Please note that Ray was much further from the run than 5 meters….

      So I decided do to what you should do: the groomers are the limit. I have avalanche gear so I might as well wear it….

  15. George

    Hi Ray,
    i am curius ,what settings do you have atm on the fenix 3 hr for gps and you think is better in accuracy now?

    • I use 1-second recording and GLONASS enabled.

    • Michael Robinson

      I’m actually very risk averse and being honest, not a particularly good anyway, so always take pisted runs.

      There isn’t an answer to “where should you draw the line” but equally, espousing a totally fixed position of “go outside the marker and you must have avalanche gear” is just going to get laughed at and ignored. Like for example, scooting up a few metres high ungroomed bank between blue runs at the bottom of a hill (which may be still technically going off-piste)

  16. Long Run Nick

    Hi Ray, I hope European runners are as safety conscious as their skiers. Lights when visibility is low, facing traffic, running w/o music.
    In the States, this seems to be ignored by too many runners.
    Glad you had a safe and fun time. Nick

    • Hari

      Hi, it’s all well and good to be avalanche conscious. I’ve been skiing in Courchevel since I was 3 y old, and believe me 40 y ago, pistes were not groomed, some avalanches were detonated overnight and most of the skiing area looked like the close to piste areas now. Didn’t prevent anyone to ski and have fun doing so. Some off piste skiing is dangerous and warrants equipment, and we know Ray likes his gear. Most of the time I tend to agree it is pretty innocuous, I took my 5y old on some such runs this weekend. Love your blog Ray, keep it up!

  17. Looks like a great trip – I especially identify with “Speaking of shots, between all of us – we had an absolute crap-ton of camera gear. I think we were in the nine action camera range, plus DSLR’s, and then three different drones. Not to mention phone cameras, mounts, and watches.” Can’t go anywhere without a ton of gear either! Noticed the jello on a couple of shots – must be a function of the poor vibration isolation and/or gimbal performance? I don’t see any of that on my Phantom/GoPro combo. Also – real jealous of all that powder! We never get any down here in SoCal…..

    I only have a Phantom 1.1 with 2-axis gimbal, and the drones you guys used are pretty impressive – haven’t tested any of the ‘follow me’ models yet. The airdog seemed to sometimes lead, sometimes follow – is that a function you set from the ground?

    That French rental property promo is pretty slick! I shoot similar projects down here, and they did a great job on it. Is aerial property promo reel use widespread in Europe yet? The grand French chateaus must make for a great subject from the air….

    • You can specify the position in the sky relative to you from the remote. So I could set lead/follow/side, in basically ~30* increments. Or, I can go more flexible with it and just stick it someplace and tell it to follow from whatever angle that is.

      The jello on some shots it do to a pre-prod dampener on it. I actually spent an hour yesterday taking it all apart and rebuilding it with new final prod dampeners. Will be trying it out over next few days to see if it helps. Hopefully. I think the other challenge is that the DJI gimbals are just some of the best in the world, so when you go from that to this, it’s tougher. Still, we’ll see.

      That property was actually the first one I’ve ever seen in Europe to use drone footage (granted, I don’t look often). Super cool though.

  18. Iso

    Ok, finally made a decision on purchasing the Fenix 3 Titanium instead of the Fenix 3 HR. I went for the titanium over the HR reading comments about battery life being longer with the Ti and the optical HR would be more a nice extra gimmick but not as accurate as HRM band. Too bad I couldn’t order a separate leather strap on Clever Training :(
    I’m thinking about purchasing the Scosche RHYTHM+ Armband Heart Rate Monitor to wear on my upper arm since I already have a compatible HRM band of my Edge 800.

    I hope I made the right decision and won’t regret not to go for the F3 HR. I can’t wait for it to arrive!

    Since I’m a first time user of a gps watch (Have Xlander and Observer Ti from Suunto) is anybody aware if there is a nice website with videos for the ‘best’ setup of the F3 instead of watching videos from different guys?
    It would be nice to find something like Ray’s website and videos (very to the point and clear).

    Any recommendations always welcome and thanks in advance.

    @ Ray: I took that membership to support DCR (keep up the good work!) and thank you for the very welcome 10% discount!

    • Thanks for the support ISO!

      I don’t have any setup videos, but that’s a good idea, and pretty easy for me to put together.

  19. Iso

    Hi Ray,
    That would be awesome if you could do that. I was thinking about the best settings for every feature/sport. For battery saving, the best gps accuracy setting, fitness tracking, notifications. I’m just thinking, tips how to get the best out of the watch. Since this device is such a versatile tool with probably also a lot of unnecessary factory settings.
    I mean you know these devices thoroughly with all your experience reviewing. That would be a great help. I’m sorry if I ask too much.
    Ugh…4:00am.…that sleeptracker feature would be doing overtime right now.
    Thanks in advance Ray!
    Prends soin de toi et heureuse Saint-Valentin!!

  20. Richie

    Hi Ray, great post. You went into some detail about the setup of your gopro for the air dog but in terms of resolution etc for normal footage skiing what would you recommend? I am planning on using my hero 3+. Many thanks

    • For normal skiing footage it depends a little bit on what my goal was. So if I was aiming for something to go slow-mo, I’d bump up the frame rate (i.e. 120FPS) at the cost of resolution. But that’s easier to do on the Hero4 Black than the 3+.

      Otherwise, I like going quality, but trying to keep it at 60FPS generally (whatever the highest resolution you can do there).

      PS: My friend just posted the big ski video of our trip, located here: link to youtube.com

  21. Frank

    link to ledauphine.com

    I rest my case.

    • Not really sure. They were pretty far away from the lifts and went quite a ways outside of range of the marked runs on some fairly complex runs to get to.