The storms are rattling through Lochaber and the temperature is still bouncing up and down like a rubber ball.
On Friday of last week we had a very windy day with thaw conditions in the morning and a slight cooling during the day. Saturday was colder and we had snow down to low levels again but still with very strong winds. Donald, Aidan and Niall forced their way into Coire nan Lochan in Glen Coe and managed to find occasional shelter in Scabbard Chimney. There were a couple of moments of clinging-on while a squall passed but they managed to climb the route and abseil off down The Tempest. Donald said it felt like VI,6 on the day and it was a hard won ascent I think.
Yesterday was relatively calm but the temperature was on the rise. Donald, Aidan and Niall went to climb D Gully Buttress on Buachaille Etive Mor and enjoyed being out of the wind. They did not enjoy the soggy snow though and the delicate and insecure crux moves proved to be unjustifiable with poor protection a good distance away. Even the retreat was quite exciting by abseil down D Gully with bottomless soggy snow. So it was an eventful weekend of climbing which is what it's all about really. We don't go climbing because it's easy!
Today, Henry the Eighth storm is battering the west coast. With 130mph gusts and thaw to the tops, it would be a bit too challenging to go climbing today! Let's hope it clears away by tomorrow.
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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.