John and I were in the Bridge of Orchy area today with a Falkirk Community Trust Outdoors Winter Climbing team of Devon, Jacob, Jim and Ross.
Jim, Ross and I climbed Kick Start on Creag an Socach on Beinn Dorain. This had a couple of distinct cruxes and requires care to protect the seconds on the traverse left after the junction with The Glass Bead Game (small to medium cams useful for this). The turf was well frozen, but buried under crusty soft snow. There’s isn’t a lot of ice around on the crag, so lines which require ice are probably best avoided at the moment. The crag was busy with teams on The Glass Bead Game, Second Coming and I think The Sting.
John, Devon and Jacob headed over to Creag Coire an Dothaidh and climbed Salamander Gully as a snow route, the ice hasn’t formed or was buried except near the top. There was a lot more snow on this crag and their route choice was in part due to a convenient set of steps up the line. There is wind slab around on top of the crusty layer and this should be borne in mind for route choice.
The Falkrik High Tops Team and I visited Coire an Dothaidh yesterday. Nigel, Jacqueline and I climbed Cenitgrade on Creag Coire an Dothaidh. There was plenty of ice on the route but it was very variable. It will not take ice screws. A team backed off Farenheit 451 due to the quality of the ice.
John, Neil and Niall climbed Kick Start on Creag an Socach reporting good conditions.
It was a very beautiful day with sunshine all day and only light winds. Following a pleasent walk out we stopped off at the friendly Bridge of Orchy Hotel before driving back home.