The quiet side of the mountain.

17th February 2018


(Above) Ski tour today up towards Carn Dubh and Coire a Bheinn from near Garvamore in the upper Spey. Very quiet here; didn’t see a soul (of the human variety) all day. Started out in light rain (Oh, joy!) this morning but, thankfully, this soon morphed into light snowfall above about 400m. Skiing to and from the road, too, which was a bit of a bonus.


(Above) Friend or foe? Wary red deer stags near the roadside checking me out.


(Above) Looking back down towards Spey Dam. Great cover! Easy skinning & fast travel. Thankful I was on skis rather than on foot. The deeper stuff would be exhausting if out and about just on Shanks’s Pony.


(Above) En route to Carn Dubh. More or less continuous snow cover today. The fence line is at 500m.


(Above) Looking up towards the summit of Carn Dubh from the trig point at 767m. A rolling whaleback of a ridge. Coire a Bheinn in shadow to the right; Coire Dubh (just visible) on the left side of the watershed. Really quite wintry though it doesn’t look it in the photo.


Drifting snow all day today above 700m. Site of a hasty pit:-


(Above) A fair number of wind sculpted snow features up near the broad ridge line. This one is about 4m deep/high and forms a sort of corridor 75m long.


(Above) A peek into the top end of Coire Dubh. Plenty of new and not so recent cold windslab in all steep lee areas; fair number of new cornices, too.


(Above) Looking west across Coire Dubh. Avalanche and cornice debris from the last couple of days litters the base of these steep E and SE-facing lee slopes.


(Above) Pretty good quality snow for sliding. Effortless and great sport; made short work of the return trip to the car. Best day out on skis to date this season.


All change tomorrow. Much milder from mid-morning. Freezing level rising from 600m at 9am to 1600m by 5pm. Stability expected to begin declining from late morning onwards.


Comments on this post

  • Stan Wygladala
    17th February 2018 10:10 pm

    Great pictures. Reminds me of the 60’s. Some great conditions to come end of Feb-first week of March when the easterlies, straight from Siberia, set in.

    • meagaidhadmin
      17th February 2018 10:15 pm

      Re. March. Remaining optimistic, Stan. Hoping the forthcoming warmer period is short-lived.

  • stan intihar
    18th February 2018 5:37 pm

    as always….a corking report.
    great pics too.
    had a great day on the skis below ben ghlas yesterday.
    may it continue!
    (the other stan…)

    • meagaidhadmin
      18th February 2018 10:25 pm

      Hey, Stan.

      Wasn’t at all convinced the day was going to shape up well whilst wiping rainfall off the bases of my skis attempting to stick on skins at the start of the day!

      Have to say, conditions for high level touring were great – best for a long time.

      Glad you had a good day ski-touring, too.

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