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Friday, 6 April 2012

Deep wet snow!

I was out with Tim and Daniella looking at basic winter skills and navigation on the Cairngorm plateau. Their proposed lightweight summer camping trip to Loch Avon was scuppered by the recent return of winter!
The forecast was for the freezing level to drop from 900 to 600 metres with heavy snow as the day progressed.
In the sleet we waded and broke trail into Coire an Lochain to look at some basic ice axe and crampon skills on the firmer old snow. The low cloud meant that we never saw more than a 100 metres ahead and never actually saw the main corrie or cliffs.
As the day progressed I was expecting the snow to firm up and the sleet to turn to snow. However the snow was definitely getting wetter and the sleet rainier with Daniella's water proof leaking like a sieve!
We headed back via Cairn Lochian and Stob Coire Sneachda looking at navigation issues and cornices on the plateau.
Trail breaking through the deep snowy slop at over 1200 metres we were expecting much colder conditions but it just seemed to be raining and thawing even more.
Tim's jacket was looking the worse for wear at the Goat Track col, as we headed up over to Pt 1141 and down to Coire Cas.
Back at the car the guy's had decided to look for accommodation with good drying facilities rather than camp. So we headed for Glenmore Lodge as opposed to Glenmore Campsite!!!
If you are looking for a good half price deal in accommodation, Glenmore Lodge have twin rooms from only £27! That's for two people at Easter and it's as cheap as camping with a car in the rain at Glenmore Forest.
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