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Sunday, 15 February 2009

Snow shelters and abseiling off mushrooms!

To avoid the crowds and traffic queues, Becky, Sue, Mark, Ben and myself spent the day at an altitude of around 500 metres on the hills at the back of my cottage.
In the drifts the snow was wet on the surface but firm and dry underneath. We looked at avalanche assessment, the construction of emergency snow shelters, snow mushrooms, bucket seats, waist belays, abseiling from and climbing up soft cornices. We also looked at winter navigation techniques.
With the thaw there's been a considerable loss of snow overnight and today at low levels. The back roads in Aviemore are now almost clear though very slushy and wet.
The Cairngorms still have tons of snow though the buttresses are now a lot blacker. Over the next few days it would be wise to stay clear of areas below any large cornices!!
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