Last day of the 2020/21 winter season.

17th April 2021

(Above) Looking west to left to right the summits of Puist Coire Ardair, Sron a Ghoire, and the Post Face of Coire Ardair. Snow distribution on the final day of the SAIS forecasting season. Best above 850m on N to SE aspects with more extensive patches on plateau areas near summits. Some N to E facing gullies have snow as low as 700m.

 

(Above) NE-facing snow holding side of Coire nan Gamhna with its wee lochan in the foreground. The lochan is at 830m and the col on the left sky line is 980m. Classic spring (or corn) snow conditions here at midday: thin, moist surface layer with firmer snow beneath. The W and NW aspects in the coire are almost snow-free.

Cooler overnight Saturday into Sunday then milder again with the possibility of some very light precip. This will make very little change to the pre-existing moist and stable snowpack. A bit of a proviso though for minor full depth avalanche activity on the Post Face (see yesterday’s blog posting), as well as for remaining cornices. Still one or two cornices in the environs of Coire Ardair but larger ones seem to be confined to Beinn a Chaorainn – also mentioned yesterday.

 

(Above) The view across to the Post Face of Coire Ardair, the Inner Coire and The Window. Mild when the sun was out but cool all day in the shade. The measured shaded air temperature here was +3 degrees C. just after midday.

 

(Above) Met and had a chat with a group of equestrians (under instruction) making their way up the Coire Ardair path to visit the lochan. The main path was quite busy with other hill-goers, mainly hill walkers, as well. Was a beautiful day to be out and about in the hills whether on 2 or 4 legs.

 

(Above) The Creag Meagaidh NNR car park was pretty much full this morning as were many of the laybys on the A86.

Well that’s your lot for this season, folks It’s been a strange winter, of course, with the mountains being empty apart from a few locals enjoying often quite good conditions for winter sport. I hope we’ve been able to give those of you deprived of your winter climbing/walking/ski-touring at least a small flavour of what it’s been like here over the past 4 months.

Until next winter!

The SAIS Creag Meagaidh guys.

Comments on this post

  • Daniel Arnold
    17th April 2021 8:48 pm

    Thanks for all your efforts and entertaining blogs this winter- was great to get a few visits to Meagaidh!

    • meagaidhadmin
      17th April 2021 10:51 pm

      Great to catch up with you that day, Dan.

      …and you eventually managed to find Raeburn’s Gully in half decent nick, too. Bonus!

  • Colin
    17th April 2021 8:49 pm

    Thanks to you and all the SAIS folk for all your great work over this season. Enjoyed it from afar! Roll on next winter.!

    • meagaidhadmin
      17th April 2021 10:52 pm

      Cheers, Colin. Let’s hope the damned virus has lost its grip by next winter, too!

  • Grant Duff
    17th April 2021 9:54 pm

    What a great positive post for the end of a season……thanks for all your hard work and inspiring us to get out onto the mountains in a safe environment.

    • meagaidhadmin
      17th April 2021 10:55 pm

      Thanks for your perennial keen interest in, and comments on, the blog, Grant.

      (Were you involved in any of the Bond movie and/or recent TG filming over on Ardverikie?)

  • Stan Wygladala
    18th April 2021 12:16 am

    Thank you for the views, comments, observations, insights, and humour over the last season. Indeed another strange season. Once was once snow and ice from November until April. Cannot reconcile the present conditions with what I would wish! North Atlantic Conveyor is weakening due to colder water off Greenland so perhaps in years to come………….

    • meagaidhadmin
      18th April 2021 9:45 am

      Re. the North Atlantic Conveyor. Hope springs eternal.

      Many thanks for your own thoughts and reminiscences in this and previous seasons, Stan. Always sage advice, more often than not laced with mirth.

      Convinced we should make you the Bard of Creag Meagaidh!

  • Tina C
    18th April 2021 9:20 am

    Thanks!

    • meagaidhadmin
      18th April 2021 9:49 am

      Hey, thanks, Tina. Appreciate your interest in the blog.

      Wishing you, John and all the staff at the Snowgoose Mountain Centre all the best for a busy(!) summer.

  • KEITH
    18th April 2021 1:03 pm

    Thanks for your insightful, informative and always entertaining reporting on what at times seemed like a particularly complex snowpack this winter. I’m assuming that the ‘lifestyler’ from earlier this week was actually an assistant forecaster, product testing the 2022 SAIS ‘site uniform’ in advance of next winter – kilt for noting wind speed and direction ( and depth of snow?), ‘real Scotsman’ approach for establishing ambient air temperature…..!

    Enjoy your summer – I look forward to more of your experienced forecasting next season to help hill goers make informed decisions, and that hopefully everyone can get back to enjoying the Scottish mountains for real again

    • meagaidhadmin
      18th April 2021 10:15 pm

      Re. the kilt. Loved all of that, Keith! A Goretex kilt perhaps? Now there’s a thought!

      The guy in the kilt is a local well known for his distinctive and unique flamboyance amongst many other things. Definitely no ‘tim’rous beastie’.

      Very many thanks for your interest in the blog and all your comments this season.

  • Helen Rennie
    19th April 2021 5:03 pm

    Thank you for your, as always, interesting , educational and witty blogs. The tangerine peel one had me laughing out loud but full of respect for you for gathering it up. Also appreciated the photos of your happy apprentice helping(?) out.
    Enjoy the summer.

    • meagaidhadmin
      19th April 2021 5:15 pm

      Thanks, Helen!

      Was fully expecting to see you on skis on your way to one of our remote couloirs this winter. Maybe you snuck in ‘under the radar’ one day!

      Perhaps catch up with you again next season.

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