Scottish Conditions 10-01-12

So far its been a very mild and wild start to the year.  The Lakes has had a wide spread strip of snow and now Scotland is following.  Last Friday gave heavy rain on the summits in the evening, the last few days have also been warm with some rain on the summits, today there was light rain on top of the Ben.  However, some easy angled mixed routes and ice routes that were well formed have just about survived, and with much colder temperatures set to return for Thursday things could come good again.

I’ve been working on the west coast recently and we’ve managed to get routes done everyday.  We’ve climbed on the Buachaille one day, then Dorsal Arete in Lochan has been the aim on more than one day.  Today we went high onto the Ben, we climbed Green Gully which was actually really good, with just enough to make the climbing good.  The ice wasn’t right to take screws where you would want them though so a bold approach was useful.  Other routes climbed today and yesterday were Ledge Route, Tower Ridge, Comb Gully, Thompsons Route and some of the easier gullies.  There will be other routes to climb I’d think with a bit of a hunt about as there is still some good ice about, though a freeze will do things a lot of good and make the ice more secure.  In Glen Coe Twisting Gully, Broad Gully, Forked Gully, NC Gully, Dorsal and the other easier gullies were all climbed yesterday.  Curved Ridge still has some snow on higher up as well.
So some routes hanging in for Thursdays freeze…
Lochan, Glen Coe, 09-01-12
 A black looking Lochan
 Still good on Dorsal Arete
 Dry rock on the Dorsal

 Climbers in Forked Gully
Ben Nevis, 10-01-12
Top out on Green Gully, good ice!