11th December 2020
The Scottish Avalanche Information Service would recommend that those wishing to enjoy the winter mountains refer toÂ Mountaineering ScotlandÂ andÂ Scottish Government advice regarding Covid-19 and outdoor activities.Â
(Above) Lochan a Choire with the crags of the Post Face largely obscured. Thankfully, a dry first forecasting day to start the 2020/21 winter season here at Creag Meagaidh. But (and there’s always a but…) it was gloomy above 700m due to the very low and dense cloud cover. Wandered up into the Inner Coire and could barely see the crags mid-morning though it did appear to clear later when making my way back down the Coire Ardair path to Aberarder.
(Above) North facing aspects above the lochan in Coire Ardair. The skyline here is around 1050m. Snow build up not the best here but it is better on E aspects up high, more so on SE facing places where the snow cover is deeper and more extensive. The last significant snowfall was carried on NW winds. Some old (and historic) cornice and avalanche debris is present below some very steep NE to E aspects above 950m. One or two of our principal gully lines have snow in them but snow cover and depth in their lower reaches is a bit sketchy now.
(Above) S and SE aspects on the side of Coire Ardair. As alluded to above, better snow cover here and it actually looked OK up on the Carn Liath plateau though this isn’t shown well in the photo.
We’re all trying to be Covid compliant here at SAIS Creag Meagaidh and since the main drag up into Coire Ardair is pretty narrow best advice is to step aside and give other path users a good 2m clearance. The public toilets at Aberarder farmhouse are open, for the time being, so if using them please use scrupulous hand hygiene upon entering and leaving them. It’s possible that SNH might close the toilets at short notice due to the very real risk of Covid transmission. If so, Mountaineering Scotland have a good leaflet giving guidance for those who ‘feel the urge’ whilst out and about in the mountains. Here:Â https://www.mountaineering.scot/assets/contentfiles/pdf/where-to-go-leaflet.pdf
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11th December 2020 5:08 pm
Nice to see you back.
Let’s hope folk keep the heid over Xmas so we can get out for some winter action in the New Year
11th December 2020 7:30 pm
I know it’s normally pretty quiet at Creag Meagaidh at this time of the season but it was deathly quiet today. I guess people are resigned to not travelling (or in many cases mandated not to travel) during these strange and difficult times. My worry is that everyone relaxes their guard and wariness during Christmas and the New Year period, travel to meet family/friends/escape their local lockdown by visiting the Highlands etc., effectively turning the festive season into a ‘super-spreader’ event. In pandemic terms, that’s back to square one…or worse!
Wishing not to sound too Grinch-like…hoping for the best but expecting the worst.
On a personal note, all the best for forthcoming festivities.
As ever, we’re hoping for white Christmas here at SAIS Creag Meagaidh!