Good winter ice climbing in the Cairngorms for May. In fact the climbing conditions would be described as pretty good even in the height of winter never mind in late Spring or early Summer!!!!
We were expecting good firm snow condition so rather than skiing the gullies we headed in to climb them with our axes and crampons.
Originally we thought about climbing a mixed rocky route but given the quality of the snow and thick ice in places we decided the gully lines were more appealing.
A few skiers had headed into the Coire with crampons and were climbing up Central Gully as we headed up towards Spiral Gully.
We moved together as the climbing was very straightforward on good firm snow. We then headed back down and were pleasantly surprised by the amount of thick ice around the Red Gully and Goat Track areas.
We played around on the little RH ice falls before Fi led up a very icy, fun and atmospheric Goat Track Gully.
We were back up onto the plateau just as the bad weather, poor viz and fresh snow arrived at around 13.30 hrs.
The new snow was being blown into the ski area on SW and this should further improve some the runs in the Cas.
More details are on Fi's blog here