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Monday, 16 February 2009

Soft, wet and windy

Very busy in Coire an t-Sneachda with lots of large groups snaking in and aiding the trail breaking through the the deep wet snow. For the walk in we met up with Fi who was teaching snow pack anchors with Becca and Mark.
An early start meant we actualy had the route to ourselves apart from a shared belay with Di and Ron who were heading off up Hidden Chimney. The Mess of Pottage was literally running with water - in fact Hidden Chimney Direct and the slabs were waterfalls! Generally the snow was soft and wet but with the occasional bit of good ice.
Mike, Tim and I climbed Jacob's Edge with Mike leading the first few pitches while I supervised. Towards the top the windy updraft increased substantially making it difficult to look down or place slings over large blocks which were being blown back up along with the water falls... I then took over and lead the last two pitches up onto the plateau before escaping back down to the relative shelter of the corrie floor.
Although everything was wet we still enjoyed ourselves and met up with Fi, Becca and Mark for the walk out - Fi enjoyed the water so much she managed to find the large pool on the path to disappear into..! See also http://www.marmotte.co.uk/blog/diary.html
The snow has almost dissapeared from Aviemore and the Glenmore and Slochd Nordic trails are now broken.
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