Friday 2 March 2012

Golden Oldy

Starting up
Delicately now...
Moving well
Nearly there
Rime and refuelling on top
Coire an Lochain... not looking good
For the final day of Kieran and Nicky's 5 days of mountaineering the choice was to go to the west face of Aonach Mor for a look at Golden Oldy. We'd pretty much given up on any idea of there being snow on it but that was secondary to the golden opportunity to get Kieran to put some of his new 'reduced faff' rope skills into practise. It was also another chance for me to convince him that not all wet grass or rock is out to kill him, especially if stood on with a weighted foot rather than pawed and stared at doubtfully:-)
The route is a long scramble and although the difficulties are low down the exposure continues to near the top, especially when the granite is slimy and liberally salted with loose blocks as today. We weren't alone as another team followed us up the route enjoying some views and largely dry weather. There was evidence of a fast disappearing dusting of snow above 1200m and rime on the grass at the summit of Aonach Mor.
We headed back via the top of the east face where teams had been making the best of a poor job "its the end" said one local instructor. I think he's right given the forecast for later next week. We'll see. A week is a long time in the Scottish Winter...

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