When in a hole….

19th March 2020

(Above) Creag Meagaidh’s Post Face and Easy Gully on the left. Lots of snow around at present; with the crags fairly well plastered. Bowls at the top end looking loaded up today

(Above) Lots of new cornice debris littering the slopes in Coire a Chriochairein, with large sections still hovering in place, around coire rims.

(Above) Again large chunks of cornice littering the slopes; often these can give the impression of a major avalanche event, pulling out sections of surface snow they as they go. Whilst the cornice collapse in itself is not classified as an avalanche per se –  they are often the trigger responsible for releasing small surface slides, or even small slab release events on the pathway below, sometimes with associated small crown and staunch wall features. The cornice sections can release at different times giving the impression of a single large event.

NB The cornice collapse a fickle animal and is not part of our ‘avalanche stability’ forecast or ‘hazard scale’ – that said  …..if recently formed and large then they are unlikely to be stable – certainly be an issue if you’re under them and they fall down!!

(Above) Plenty of ski tourers out and about today – good way to get around , at present, as on foot the snow is pretty soft – especially at lower elevations and you’ll be ‘post hole’ plugging as you go.

(Above) Ski tourers making good progress into Coire Ardair

(Above) ‘Post Hole Plugger’ at work

(Above) Top tip! When in a hole (snow) – keep digging……

Comments on this post

  • Andrew cook
    19th March 2020 5:58 pm

    Snow looks good, not icy like it is apparently on Cairngorm Massif,
    With your local knowledge Do you reckon snow conditions will be similar on Geal charn, at Laggan/Spey dam ?

    • meagaidhadmin
      19th March 2020 6:22 pm

      Hello Andrew,

      I’d be surprised if it were hugely different …..

      I can’t imagine there will be much on the ground below the 450m contour.

      Hope that turns out to be helpful!!

  • Mark Figiel
    19th March 2020 6:33 pm

    Compared with the snowy winter of 2015 how does this compare depth wise in the gullies and hollows ?

  • Andrew cook
    19th March 2020 6:51 pm

    Thanks for reply, enjoy my daily read of the blog and avalanche report.
    Taking bike to get to the snow

    Hoping there is some fresh or spring snow and not solid boiler plate 🙂

  • Allan Masson BMRT
    19th March 2020 8:41 pm

    No soft snow on Gael Charn just solid boiler plate from about 700 m appart from isolated, thin patches on wind slab on the easy-angled slopes between the bealach and the summit.

    • meagaidhadmin
      19th March 2020 10:46 pm

      Thanks for that Allan – and I’ve no doubt Andrew will be appreciative also!!
      We deal with a very spatial animal in Scotland!!

  • Andrew
    20th March 2020 6:23 am

    Thanks both
    Plan B then – Creag meagaidh

  • Grant Duff
    20th March 2020 11:44 pm

    Plenty of post holing and got up to above the stane dyke over looking your sharks fin ridge to enjoy wonderful views and exploring the landscape with binoculars.

    Certainly no shortage of snow and good to see just how many groups were out.

    What a day.

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