Thursday 15 January 2015

Snowholes, snowshoes, snow storms and…night nav

After a morning reviewing yesterday, checking the forecasts and looking at all things snow hole the Glenmore Lodge Advanced Winter Skills team and I had a serious discussion as to what to do today… if anything. We watched a video on The Avalanche at Tunnel Creek and talked through the various heuristic traps involved and held them up against our plan for today. We had the option not to go out or to stick our necks out looking for a slope to dig a snow hole into (i.e. a steep, snowy lee slope…. not the best ting to be questing after with today's forecast). We decided to go out but laid some clear ground rules about where we weren't going today and involved everyone in the decision making. 
Then we got lucky…
After drop off at the sugar bowl and a flounder up the other side of the Allt Mor we were battered by the winds doing their usual southerly thing… i.e. screaming down the north side of the 'Gorms out of the Coires. We used the sowshoes a little before the wind got to strong and we needed to crouch and scuttle along the ridge. Near Airgiod Meall we were following the stream line in calmer conditions looking hopefully for the right snow bank and there it was; 3m high and when my probe went 3m in there was a cheer and the digging commenced. After producing an excellent snow hole and enjoying a brew it was head torches on for the snowy blowy night nab over the tops and down through Glenmore Forest back to the Lodge for dinner!

Breezy Cairngorm night nav from Alan Halewood on Vimeo.

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