Thursday, December 31, 2009

Lots of deep snow

New deep accumulations in Corrie an t Sneachda

There are deep snow amounts at all altitudes which make for very difficult trail breaking.
The snowpack is very weak on most aspects with heavy and hard windslab overlying sugary faceted layers.
In the cold temperatures this weakness will remain for some time

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Drifting at higher altitudes

We have an unstable situation in the Cairngorms with newly drifted windslab lying on an already unstable cold snowpack. Views into Coire an's or snow shoes recommended for travel as the snow is waist deep in places.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Bitterly cold day

Climbers below Aladdins Buttress in Coir an t Sneachda

A burp test showing failures in the snowpack on buried surface hoar on a West aspect at 1080m.
It has been a bitterly cold day with light East winds, but only a little drifting has taken place. Generally the snowpack seems well consolidated but weaknesses do exist and will become more pronounced if these layers are covered by windslab and more snowfall. (it has been unusually calm for the last 10 days or so).

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Pea soup day

Views from Glenmore...lots of snow

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Stunning conditions in the cairngorms

Coire an t-Sneachda
Today's pit was dug on at SE aspect at 945m. Several weaknesses were noted and there is a very steep temperature gradient.

Spey Valley

Great ski touring.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Christmas

We have a lot of deep soft snow in the Cairngorms, skis or snow shoes recommended. Happy Christmas everyone.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Thick Cloud- Deep Snow

Looking onto Mess of Potage in Coire an t Sneachda.

A day of very poor visibility and deep snow - difficult trail breaking - it took a party 3hrs to get to the base of the crag in Coire an T Sneachda from the car park !
The snowpack feels very spooky especially with the weak layers 40 cm down on the old surface hoar layer on what seems like all aspects.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Pea souper !

At the profile siteLots of fresh snow overnight has added to the snowpack of yesterday. The new snow has fallen on the surface hoar layer which is now buried and presents a very weak layer about 40cm down. The weak layer above the old hard snow mentioned yesterday is still present.
Shooting cracks occured underfoot on all aspects above 800m.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Glorious winters day

Coire an Lochain
Mess of Potage Coire an t Sneachda

Looking toward Creag Meagaidh
Looking towards the Northern Corries and the Sgorans
It has been a rare day with good visibilty and snow - good touring on the tops -
hard work on foot.

Some deep instabilities are present in the snowpack at about 50cm depth on
NE aspects at 1000m level. There is a strong temperature gradient which is
producing facets above the old neve layer.
This will develop in the cold temperatures and shallow snowpack.
I'll look at this layer again tomorrow.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

It's still snowing!

The Cairngorms are looking very white and wintry. Accumulations of new snow are quite deep and unstable on many aspects especially in steep terrain. Great snow for skiing apart from the poor visibility.

looking into Sneachda

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Wild and wintry Conditons

As forecasted we had a spell of strong North winds with heavy snow, leading to poor stability and visibility. Great snow for the skis!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Cold and calm

Its still very cold with snow showers. Everything on the plateau was completely white due to the good snow cover and mist, so we couldn't see very much but we did have one friendly visit from this Snow Bunting.

Today's pit was dug on the South side of Cairngorm.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Winter in the Cairngorms

Climbing Conditions in the Northern Corries are looking good now that temperatures have fallen considerably.

Thick blue ice has developed on the Cairngorm weather station