Glass half full.

22nd February 2020

(Above) Came across Kit Taylor and Magda Nykiel gearing with their touring skis and split board in the Aberarder staff car park (Naughty! Should have parked in the capacious – and empty – car park down near the roadside.) Visitors from the US of A and Poland, respectively, expressing their boundless enthusiasm and optimism for their quest today. Their goal was to skin up the main path and camp by Lochan a Choire at the end of Coire Ardair. With very strong winds (gusting 80mph over summits) and punishing showers of snow and graupel in prospect, I tried to talk them out of the camping, honestly! To be continued….


(Above) Coire Chriocahirein, just visible. Mainly East to South East aspects in the photo. A boiling cauldron of spindrift today. Snatched photo taken at 700m in a momentary pause in the snow showers. Any aspect with East on it had a deepening cover of windslab, and significantly more above 800m. Stability was poor and continues to decline in these places.


(Above) The camera lens splattered with snow and pointing in the general direction of the crags in upper Coire Ardair. Not the best day for photography.


(Above) Looking back down towards Aberarder and Loch Laggan from Coire Chriochairein.  A little welcome shelter from the relentless wind and blowing snow was available behind the boulder. You get accustomed to cowering behind such things when you work at SAIS Creag Meagaidh!


(Above) Came across Magda and Kit again at the high point of the Coire Ardair path. Enthusiasm a tad diminished now after a hour or so of head down into stinging graupel! Camping “under the shelter of the crags” (Kit’s comment this morning) I think had lost a little of its original lustre. I let them know about the howffs in the vicinity of the rescue box at the top end of the coire, and if they couldn’t get their tent up they’d be an acceptable, if cold, alternative. I got the feeling they might just visit the loch then turn tail and head back to the car. Welcome to the Scottish winter experience, folks!

Very wintry on Sunday and again on Monday.

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