10-11 January: As the freezing level quickly fell there was a definite winter feel with verglas, snow & hail. So it worked well for winterising there summer knowledge with crampons on icy rock, clearing icy cracks for gear and doing all the rope work with your gloves on. Not wanting to top out down climbing and abseil options for escape completed the learning.
We chose to head up into Stob Coire nan Lochan on Saturday for a skills refresher and intro to mountaineering rope work. We walked up to the coire with blue skies above us, and were greeted by reasonable snow cover and cold dry conditions. We spent time looking at moving safely up down and around on steep snow, progressing on to dealing with an unexpected slip. A journey under the North East ridge took us to an area suitable for practicing bucket seats, buried axes, snow bollards, and all the associated knots.
Scotland currently has more snow on the hills than at anytime in the last sixty years. Fitness as ever plays a big part with long walk-ins and arduous weather combining to make Scotland in winter the perfect training ground for expeditions further afield.