Tuesday, 9 February 2016

A golden day on Golden Oldy

Today Was a great reminder of why we do the winter game. The previous grim days this season fade rapidly in the face of a stunner like today. Steve and I went to the West face of Aonach Mor taking advantage of the early Nevis Range gondola. As we walked towards the golden lit hills of the west we said hello to Giles and Johannes who were off to Aonach Beag and Lucy and Wally who were heading for Gendarme Ridge and then put our heads down for Golden Oldy. The trail of those who were there yesterday meant we were gearing up not far below the first belay an hour and half later.
I wore a soft shell only again! I wore thin fleece gloves! The sun shone and the wind refrained from blowing. It clouded in just as we topped out for lunch at the summit and although we stopped to chat to Brian and Brodie on the plateau and Gill on the slopes we were still in the cafe for a brew and a beer by mid afternoon. Steve was cruising today and we fair flew up the route!
Happy days!!
 Heading for the golden lit hills of the west
 Lucy and Wally gearing up below Gendarme and a team following us to Golden Oldy
 Stunning light through the col
 Last bit to the climb
 Here we go!
 The gendarme of Gendarme Ridge against another cobalt blue sky!
 Carn Mor Dearg with Ben Nevis just poking out behind
 High above the Allt Daim
 Wally on the crest in the shade and Lucy just below in the sun
 "Not bad is it?"
 Happy climber
 Half way there
 Narrower and flatter
 The thin bit
 Steve posing
 On the plateau
 I can see my house from here!
Plenty of skiers enjoying the snow too

Monday, 8 February 2016

Soft snow shuffle on Curved Ridge

Was it a bird? Was it a plane? No it was the sun!!!! in a cobalt blue sky!!! I wore a soft shell all day today as Steve and I sweated our way up Curved Ridge. It was calm, warm and pleasant to the summit if rather porridgy. Milder than forecast but... did I mention it was sunny!!
Day 1 with Steve and he selected Curved Ridge from the menu I offered as it was a route on his radar. Delicate climbing under loose snow today.
 What's that bright light in the sky?
 I remember... its the sun!
 Buachaille Etive Mor today
 Bright Light!
 Crowberry Tower
Coming down

Friday, 5 February 2016

Soggy Sneachda

Final day of the Glenmore Lodge mountaineering course and I suggested the Twin Ribs to give the team the opportunity to use the ropes on a mixtures of rock and snow pitches and anchors. Raining hard on the walk in and windy but the winds eased as the did the precipitation. Looks like a evidence of a slide on the apron below the LHS of the Mess of Pottage (cornice collapse?).

Thursday, 4 February 2016

Fiacaill Ridge today

Today I took the Glenmore Lodge mountaineers in to Coire a t Sneachda where we turned sharp right up the steep ground on the change of aspect and headed up onto the crest of Fiacaill Ridge following this up onto the plateau. The team split into pairs doing 2 pitches of rocky climbing with some steep and serious snow in between. Nice work guys.
A very busy Coire today with lots of climbing teams out and lower winds than expected. The rain arrived at about 14.30 as we made our way round the the rim of the Coire pointing out future objectives for the group.

Tuesday in the east Wednesday in the west

On tuesday I took my Glenmore Lodge mountaineers into the Ciste Gully area for us to work on some movement skills and to look at the snow pack. We went on a journey up No.2 Gully and down No1. and the bed of the Ciste Gully before heading round into the Aonach Bowl.

 On wednesday we decided to show the team the west. A trip to Aonach Mor to put the movement skills into practise on some more variable and serious terrain whilst also introducing snow anchors. We had brick hard snow and the weather did us proud showing off Lochaber well.