6th February 2020
(Above) Looking south from Bealach a Bharnish towards the ridges of Beinn a Chaorainn. The well-known East Ridge is shown in outline nearer the camera. Some early mist swirled around and enveloped the mountains on our patch but began to clear by late morning. Timing’s everything. Sometimes the early bird doesn’t catch the worm! As you can see it turned into a great day.
(Above) Two climbers dwarfed by the bulk of Beinn a Chaorainn’s East Ridge, here swathed in early mist. Good route choice today + they had the mountain to themselves. Whilst not in prime condition, the snow was firmer at higher altitudes.
(Above)Â The East Ridge in profile nearest the camera. Beinn a Chaorainn is infamous for it’s monster cornices, but not today.Â Those visible here softened a little later in the day after sustained exposure to the sun. There remains some residual objective danger from cornice collapse, as well as from rockfall in a few selected locations.
(Above) Coire na h-Uamha, immediately north of Beinn a Chaorainn’s East Ridge. Snow cover on eastern aspects, like here, is holding up pretty well despite the milder temperatures at lower altitudes. Windward slopes and some plateau areas (like the Carn Liath plateau) have much less. Strong winds of a few days ago did a pretty good job of blasting these places clear.
Much windier on Friday but staying dry.
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