SCNL Glencoe, 23-03-13

Snow down to sea level last night and wild winds lashing the highlands gave Glencoe a transformation today with snow drifting across the road and airborne snow from valley level up.  We were the only visitors up to Lochan today which put on a great show of full on winter conditions.  The crags on route which I’d thought might be a little sheltered were getting blasted by returning winds and there wasn’t really any shelter to be had once out the car door where goggles went on and stayed on until back at the car again.  Loads of mixed routes well snowed up, very cold, big areas of windslab about but also hard wind scoured snow around much of the crag apron from what I could see.  We did some of Dorsal Arete before the lobbying started to bail down the Gully, so we bailed off down.  We also looked at some lead climbing on a small crag on the way out before heading for the car.

Good work Ivan and Bobby, another good day out, you always bring the best weather!

Things are due to settle a bit now from Monday so there should be some good conditions about with many lower venues possibly giving good conditions.  Whilst there is a lot of wind blown snow in places the actual amount that came down wasn’t that much, many areas will likely be wind scoured with areas of slab down wind, lots of cross-loading as well.  ‘Smoking the White Owl’ IV/5 below the top Gondola station at the Nevis Range has seen a good few ascents and is an option for lower ice.