Monday, 30 November 2009

THE NORTH WIND DO BLOW....




A bitterly cold morning on the fells today with a strong Northerly wind blowing. Superb cloud formations in the morning and by afternnon a clear sky. Saw no one on the way up to Skiddaw, who said the Lakes was crowded?

Saturday, 28 November 2009

ENGLISH SNOW


Winter as certainly hit the hills this weekend, even down in the Lake District. There was a light dusting of snow down to 700m. Looks like a cold, snowy few days to come in the Highlands too.

Friday, 27 November 2009

WINTER

Winter is definately here, with snow on the tops and some strong winds over the last few days. Sumit teperatures have dropped so safe to say winter is here.

I'm away from technology for the next few days but can be contacted via the mobile: 077 2000 1326.

Winter bookings are filling up with February getting busy.

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

FRESH SNOW


There had been a drop in temperature overnight and a fresh covering of snow down to 700m this morning. The rain/snow didn't arrive until afternoon and with the cloud quite high it looked a good day to be on the hills. Down in the Lake District next week. Places still free for navigation courses based in the North Lakes. Then it's off to BAIML AGM and CPD workshops at the beginning of December. Bookings have been coming in for Christmas winter skills/guided walking recently. Lets hope the weather cools down again after this tropical spell.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

ALMOST THERE







A quiet day on Ben Nevis today. John was over from Australia and in between watching rugby matches he wanted to get up The Ben. Unfortunately his leg was playing up so we never managed to get to the summit. There was a break in the weather today and a dry, pleasant spell in the morning to early afternoon. Relatively mild weather as depleted the snow on the upper slopes.

Friday, 13 November 2009

LAZY HILL DAY




A very pleasant day again on the west coast with some sunshine by mid day. I had a lazy start and cycled up to Lundavra then walked up onto a very nice wee hill above Loch Leven - Tom Meadhoin. At only 621m its a shortish hill day and a good jaunt on days when the cloud is down on the higher hills, like it was today. Like all these smaller hills you are guaranteed not to see a soul, especially as I didn't go up the logical, shorter route from Loch Leven. Looks like a wild and wet day on Saturday then a much better day for Sunday. More snow above 1000m forecast so the highest summits will all have a covering of snow.

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

FOUR PLAY ON BEN NEVIS





















video

It was another calm, quiet day here in the West Highlands with another cold night. I was getting the most of the snow on Ben Nevis and went up No. 4 Gully on the North face. This is a straightforward grade 1 winter climb and is usually well trodden but today I saw was no one in the Ciste Coire nor in the gully. It was a bit Bouldery lower in the corrie with patchy snow from 950m but half way up the gully there was excellent amounts of snow. There is ice forming on the buttresses but no ice in the gully as the freezing level was around 1100m today. A lot of snow now on the plateau and the pony track is, in places, banked with drifted snow. Poor visibility at 1000m but it was sunny below this altitude and a very pleasant descent. The path is icy in places after being well trodden. There was folk still ascending the pony track in all kinds of attire, the usual 'no rucksack brigade' being the most popular way up and someone sporting a nice pair of multi coloured wellies.


video

Monday, 9 November 2009

FROSTY


Another frosty over-night with temperatures below freezing at sea level again. A lovely bright and sunny morning but the thin cloud cover rolling in from the SW, heralding a weather front from the Atlantic. Should be more snow getting dumped on the highest summits tomorrow, Wednesday another good looking day to play out in the snow. The path over Cow Hill as been damaged by last week's torrential downpours, seems excessive that there are 'path closed' signs up.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

MAMORES

















Another very nice day in The Highlands. Below freezing temperatures at sea level overnight so a frosty start. Yvonne & I were up on Stob Ban's North ridge and then over to Mullach Coirean. There was a light covering of snow above 800m but above 1000m on the higher hills there looks quite a deep covering. The temperatures rose during the day and it was quite mild by the time we returned to the glen. Another clear night tonight so freezing temps again and another clear morning tomorrow.

Saturday, 7 November 2009

EARLY IGLOO ON MEAGAIDH












Another taste of winter today, Yvonne and I were up on Creag Meagaidh. It was definitely colder on the tops today and some compass work needed on the summit plateau getting across to the top of Stob Coire Puist Ardair in the cloud and lying snow. We were surprised to find a igloo ready made right at the summit. So we made use of the facilities and had a bite to eat out of the cold wind. The snow above 1000m was consolidating as the overnight temperatures had dropped to well below freezing. Saw flock of dozen ptarmigan as we headed down off the mountain. Looks like an excellent day tomorrow, enjoy the snow & sun!

Thursday, 5 November 2009

WINTER ON BEN NEVIS























A superb day of sunshine and very wintry looking mountains here on the west coast. Overnight precipitation had put down more snow above 900m and there was even some ice in places. Ben Nevis is looking brilliant at the moment and some winter climbing to be had no doubt. I was on Carn Mor Dearg today where there is an excellent covering of snow. The North Face and top car park were deserted bar one car at the NF, this is an excellent time to be on the hills, while everyone else is Christmas shopping. I sat for an hour at the summit, basking in the sun & snow. On the way down the cloud came in from the east and shrouded the summit, well timed. Could be more snow tomorrow as a another band of rain passes through with snow on the highest tops.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

WINTER?




















A much cooler airflow last night and overnight precipitation put down a few cm of snow on the hills above 900m. It was a very pleasant day to be out on the hills, dry and bright with hardly a breeze on the tops. Although it wasn't clear skies there were superb broken spectres and a massive 'morning glory' on Sgurr a' Mhaim in the Mamores, quite spectacular though difficult to get a decent photo of it. Could this be the start of winter?