Beinn an Dothaidh

I had a very good day today introducing Cristina and Marti to Scottish Winter Climbing. We climbed Stairway to Heaven in the North East Coire of Beinn an Dothaidh. The route was in excellent condition with a good ice pitch leaving West Gully and turf frozen solid throughout.

Marti and Cristina near the top of the route.

Ice is forming fast in the coire, but Taxus is still broken low down. There’s a dusting of snow on the hill from the last two days and very little old snow. West Gully only has old snow in it’s last section and there’s some neve around the coire rim. It was snowing lightly, but steadily on a south-west wind as we descended.

A’Bhuidheanach Bheag on skis and Taxus

Yesterday, the Falkirk High Tops Team and I visited the Drummochter Pass where we ski toured on A’Bhuidheanach Bheag. We skied three different descents on the mountain. All of these were on south to south easterly aspects and all gave excellent skiing on spring snow.

There was still enough snow on the mountain to wear skis for the whole day.

Today, I visited Beinn an Dothaidh with Andy. We traversed the mountain climbing Taxus on the way. The route remains complete but could now do with a refreeze to bring it back into good condition. The ice that remains was still good enough for screws.

Photos on the facebook page.

Beinn an Dothaidh

Out today with a Falkirk Community Trust team of John, David, Doug, Graham and Paul climbing Taxus with the Icefall Finish in the North-East Coire of Beinn an Dothaidh.

Graham and Paul with the slope up to Stairway to Heaven behind

Graham and Paul with the slope up to Stairway to Heaven behind

Other teams out today on Taxus (with the normal finish) and Central Gully. Cloud at coire height all day, South-Westerly wind but no precipitation during the day and no significant wind movement of the snow.

Doug on the initial steepening

Doug on the initial steepening

After the recent thaw and refreeze the snowpack in the area is generally well consolidated. Snow cover started at coire height. Turf was well frozen, but buttress routes looked very black although there was some rime forming during the day. Ice on the route was generally good although becoming a bit thin on the initial steepening. The Icefall Finish and it’s upper corner was on good ice for climbing, but not always great for screws for runners.

Doug on the Icefall Finish

Doug on the Icefall Finish