The past week has been fairly cold with light snow and frosts on the very highest summits.
The good news is that again on Sunday and into next week more cold weather and snow is forecast. This is great news as the general cooling and freezing of the ground and the slow snow buildup is what we really need for a reliable and sustained winter season.
We don't need the extremes of a hard frost and heavy snow one day and high summer temperatures a few days later!
The plateau is still white though the bulk of rime and frost on the lower crags dissapeared on Tuesday but built up again later. However apart from the very very tops of some of NE Braeriach gullies there is very little snow buildup in the classic snow and ice routes in the Cairngorms. The higher mixed routes when frozen are being climbed though correct route selection and timing is crucial as conditions can change within hours. Some great photos of climbing conditions on Thursday can be found on the Ice Factors blog. Winter routes such as Fluted Buttress Direct, Orginal Route, The Seam, Ewen Buttress, Hybrid, Physical Graffiti, Migrant and more were all climbed during week in mixed or was it a a mix of conditions...!