Very wintry showers pulsing across the whole of Scotland just now. All ‘Munros’ will have a dusting of new snow no doubt. No let up until around Thursday by the sound of it. Today Bruce Poll and I have been working on some final website and newsletter details of the handover of my old company. It’s all going very well and if you have not received a newsletter and would like to be sent one, please contact either Bruce or myself on firstname.lastname@example.org or go to the contact link at www.westcoast-mountainguides.co.uk
Archive for the ‘Scotland Winter’ Category
“I can hardly believe I’m in the UK, looking out at this mountain scene said Padraic, so alpine”. “Don’t worry Padraic, in a couple of years you might not be in the UK!” Anyway, with a sense of common enthusiasm, united in our task of being together with an identical objective, we set off from the CIC Hut towards Orion Face under an early morning clear sky and no wind. Two men from different countries acting as one!
Orion Face is not the hardest of the classic grade V’s on Nevis, far from it. However it is the most sustained. Point Five Gully, Zero Gully, Smith’s Route are all steeper in places, but do not have the commitment and length of Orion Face.
Many thanks for your blog this year – equal parts inspiration and information! Will it continue when you hand over the reins? Just a quick update on Ben Nevis conditions. On Saturday we climbed Hadrian’s Wall – other teams were on Slav Route, Smith-Holt Route, Orion Direct and Point5. Conditions couldn’t have been better for us but those on the lower sections of the Orion Face struggled to find good ice.Lots of new snow made NE Buttress and Tower Ridge very slow going. Image below is taken of Jason approaching the gully on the 3rd Pitch of Hadrian’s – lots of ice!
All the best
When Bruce Poll takes over fully we will both continue with a blog. Mine will be mostly Scottish and Bruce will insert Scottish and Alpine in equal measure I’m sure. I’m still very keen to enhance the blogosphere and share my interest in photography. I will have a small website, but more of that later.
I’ve attached a couple of pics from today (27th April). We did Thompson’s Route which was good, involved a bit trail breaking to get there. On the route there was some excellent older neve and also cruddy snow covering a lot of the rock which was a bit of a pain when it was mistaken for the good stuff. A few big cornices around the tops and bits of ice and snow falling of any aspects that see the sun and even some that don’t.
cheers for now,
Be careful at the tops of gullies this weekend folks. Number Four Gully went today on a new snow layer. Similar, harder layers were found in cornice locations elsewhere. Good weather tomorrow but more wintry storms arriving next week. Anyone fancy a climb?
Had a superb day on the Cairngorm plateau today (19th April). Ascended via the Fiacaill Buttress to Cairn Lochan and then walked over to Ben Macdui (for tremendous clear views) and returned via the spur E of Lurcher’s Crag. Pretty quiet on the mountains – a few ski tourers and other walkers, but a lovely tranquil day with no wind and plenty of bright sunshine.
There is an amazing amount of snow on the plateau and corrie headwalls for late April. A few pics attached which may be of interest.
Thanks Roy for these lovely photos.
It was a shame to not get out with Spike on Sunday but I did mange to follow your footsteps up the point on 8th April. A great day out but with a bit more “typical” conditions than it looked like you had. Would also like to post if anyone found a screw on the main path down after the zig-zags then it would be gratefully received back again!
We have some storms approaching over the weekend, but they look as though they will dump snow on the high ground as the systems move through. Winter will persist on Ben Nevis for a while longer. Yesterday Scott Kirkhope sents these photo in from a CMD traverse.
A great day out from the CIC Hut with my good friend and fellow guide David Hopkins. The conditions on Ben Nevis are flawless just now and even with a 1500hr start we managed the route and descended for a comfortable night in the CIC Hut. Anyone who comes across a BD Ice Screw and also a single ankle gaiter, please consider returning them to me, thanks!