Adret et ubac
20th March 2018
Sunny side and shaded side. Big contrasts in surface snow and air temperatures today depending on exposure to sun or shade.
(Above) Booting up over moist surface snow on the South-facing and sunny side of Coire Ardair today. Beautiful corn snow by mid morning!
(Above) The other side of Coire Ardair. North facing, easy-angled and shaded until midday. Very different snow quality in shaded areas here. Some cold and localised older windslab from the last storm cycle is visible in the lee of any obstruction in the photo. These accumulations were cross-loaded by the wind blowing left to right.
(Above) The Post Face of Coire Ardair (R) and the imposing black mass of Pinnacle Buttress (left of centre) viewed from edge of the Carn Liath plateau. Much steeper NW, N and NE aspects here threw a heavier and persistent shade. These places stayed frozen all day.
(Above) Coire Chriochairein and its cornices today. These are expected to soften later on Wednesday as the freezing level rises to 2000m.
(Above) Interesting layers near a buried crust in today’s formal snow pit. The two black arrows denote a softer layer with evidence of some facetting, however the dense layer above it acts as a relatively strong and supportive ‘bridge’ across it. The blue arrows show where there’s another softer layer with a few facet edges on the snow grains. Both these layers were relatively un-reactive during shear tests. Very cold snow here in the shade – snow surface temperature was -5.6 degress C. at 910m on a NW aspect – and a complete contrast to sun-soaked slopes.
(Above) A video panorama looking into the top end of Coire Ardair and Coire Chriochairein. Â Note the relative lack of wind noises on the sound track. ( The camera has a very sensitive mic and often picks up my terrible sniffling when shooting video!)Â Very light cooling breezes today. All change tomorrow though.
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21st March 2018 10:11 am
As ever your blogs are fantastic and informative – thanks for all the great work you guys/gals do
Would you like the SAIS users collective to club together and buy you a hanky?!
21st March 2018 2:58 pm
Re. hankies: Nice offer, Patrick!
Many thanks for your comment.