A little more fresh snow fell on Thursday night down to just a couple hundred metres above sea level. A bit of cloud and wind hugged the west coast so Andrew, Josh and I went a little further inland yesterday to try to stay out of the cloud and in the clear air. We went to Buachaille Etive Mor to climb North Buttress where we found great climbing and good views all day.
Ice has been forming in the colder weather of the last couple of days. Low down in the drainage lines such as Great Gully there is some ice starting to build. If it carries on like this we might get some low level cascade climbing in a few days. The snow on Buachaille Etive Mor is dry and powdery, not very helpful for the climbing. However this climb is good to climb in any condition so after clearing the snow away we used the positive hooks and ledges in the rock. The turf is well frozen and solid for pick placements too.
All day long we had amazing views over Rannoch Mor. We saw the stunt plane at Glen Coe Mountain ski area and very few other people. Richard and Gordon were the only other people climbing and they had Curved Ridge to themselves. The descent down Coire na Tullach was scoured by the NW winds and was very safe to walk down. The snow cover went all the way down to the road so the walk out was quick and easy. So this was a great way to end five days of climbing with Andrew and Josh who were after some preparation for climbing the Matterhorn and Ama Dablam. As well as experiencing Scotland at its best they have had some great training for bigger peaks, and had a lot of fun doing so.
Self reliance is a fundamental principle of mountaineering. By participating we accept this and take responsibility for the decisions we make. These blog posts and conditions reports are intended to help you make good decisions. They do not remove the need for you to make your own judgements when out in the hills.