We had a bit of a thaw earlier in the week which has stripped a lot of the snow from the mountains, but over the last day or two the temperatures have plummeted again. Elisa and Tamara are over from Belgium and with -8 degrees Celsius and 50-60 mph winds forecast for the summit of Ben Nevis we wrapped up warm for our walk.
Fortunately the sun was out but it didn't do anything to take the bite out of the wind so it was a day to keep moving, with a quick break at the only sheltered spot in at the Red Burn. It was a battle to get up the zig-zags in the wind and by the time we got to 1100m energy was low and we made the decision to turn around. We never put crampons on but as we approached our high point there was more and more snow on the path and it was frozen solid. It looked like they would have been needed if we had gone higher so should definitely be packed. Despite not making it to the summit and the tough conditions it was still a great day to be out in the mountains with beautiful views all round.
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.