Chamonix (pronounced like sha-mo-knee) straddles the river Arve in a deep valley that runs between Mont Blanc, the highest European mountain east of the Urals, and the Aiguille Rouge range. This area of the Alps, which is now divided between France, Italy and Switzerland, was once more-or-less united under the Kingdom of Burgundians and then later under the Dukes of Savoy. The places we skied on the trip include Chamonix, in the French Department of Haute-Savoie, Courmayeur, in the Italian region of the Aosta Valley, and Verbier in the Swiss canton of Valais.

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