Wednesday 26 January 2011

Day 4- the mountain journey.

Today we split the Glenmore Lodge Winter ML Trainees into 3 teams and took them on a journey to apply some of the skills we have been looking at in isolation. We looked at a number of scenarios ranging from simple leadership issues to more complex steep ground management problems. My team navigated in poor visibilty round the base of the Fiacaill of Sneachda into the wee sub coire just east of Coire an Lochain. here we moved onto steeper ground up onto the plateau. more navigation took us to the lip of the Goat Track for more ropework in descent and in a strong wind.
The snowpack has firmed up nicely with the drop in temperature, some ice has formed and the buttresses were well rimed. The open snow slopes are firm and unforgiving- a slip will result in a fast descent often onto boulders exposed below. Invernookie was reported as having good snow on it today but a very icey top pitch making gear hard to come by. I expect these conditions may be repeated on other routes as cracks have iced up.
Off out on our little mini-break tomorrow night so no blog. Nice forecast so I suspect i'll be looking forwards to plenty of night navigation from the snowhole.
Over in Glencoe tells me that Boomerang Gully was in good condition today, but the buttresses were pretty black and routes like SC and Twisting Gully were thin looking.

New Project from Alan Halewood on Vimeo.

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