Friday, 20 March 2020


Fiacaill Buttress and deep snow
A stunning day across many areas in the Highlands. High pressure for the next few days. In the Cairngorms we had bags of sunshine and hardly a breeze on the tops.
Excellent snow cover to 800m
Temperatures in Aviemore were down to minus 5 C this morning. I started walking at 7.45 for a wee trip on the Fiacaill Coire sneachda ridge. Snow at lower levels was firm and a joy to walk on. Glorious clarity on the trek into Coire an t-sneachda.
Coire an t-sneachda 
Easy walking through the boulderfields in the Coire. The lochans well frozen over, enough so to walk across. Amazing amount of snow in the Goat Track and Point Five Gully area.
Goat Track & Fiacaill Buttress 
I always enjoy gaining the Fiacaill Coire sneachda ridge via the big bowl under the Fiacaill Buttress. A far more interesting route when Avalanche safe. This area is also in deep snow cover. No doubt to the successive storms on Westerly winds some time ago.
Fabulous snow cover 
Brilliant cramponing up the slopes with the Fiacaill Buttress looming to the left of me. All in solitude. Just a few folk climbing on the crag and a couple skinning up the Goat Track.

Fiacaill Buttress in beautiful light

Nice time of year for sun and snow in the Coire. Conditions reminiscent of The Alps. Usually there is a sizeable boulderfield in this area. Not at the moment. Hardly any boulders poking through the snowpack.
Cairn Gorm

Full snow cover 

Looking into the Fiacaill Couloir
The ridge itself is quite rocky. Best of any snow is on the western slopes below the Crest. Excellent snow and ice along there. Within no time I was up onto the plateau.
The view from the ridge into Coire an Lochain 

Along the ridge
On the plateau in was glorious with no winds. Some thin cloud came drifting in and out. Icy conditions on the tops.
Drifting thin cloud 
On top of Cairn Lochan there was superb views, the sun being in the 'right place' for photographs looking into the crags.
Coire an Lochain 

Breakfast views
Nice to laze and graze on the summit of Cairn Lochan. Not many days we've been able to sit and have a picnic on the tops this winter.
Top of The Couloir

I descended down via Lurchers Ridge. The temperature was beautifully 'warm' once below 1000m. Sunshine and views. Like most places the ridge has a full snow cover. A delight to walk down.

Surface hoar
Coire an Lochain 

Lurchers Ridge
A beautiful day.
Loch Morlich & The Cairngorms 

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