Western Chimney Route.
Many apologies for the break in blog posts. I was having too much fun at Fort William Mountain Festival and no spare time for blogging. Last week we had thaw days on Tuesday and Friday, and lots of fresh snow on the other days. Strong westerly winds have been transporting a lot of snow into deep accumulations and the avalanche hazard is pretty tricky at the moment. Ice has been growing well though on Ben Nevis.
So with lots of red on the Lochaber SAIS forecast Paul and I went round to Glen Coe. Paul was on our Performance Winter Climbing Workshop at the weekend so he had a great day of coaching on the ice and a day on Jackknife and Waterfall Gully yesterday. Today we went to Church Door Buttress and we climbed Western Chimney Route. I climbed this two weeks ago and I had just as much fun today. There is a bit more solid snow in the chimney and on the exit from The Arch. Great climbing, sunshine and calm weather made it a brilliant day out.
Church Door Buttress is very well rimed up and pretty icy. There is quite a lot of ice on Stob Coire nam Beith - Deep Cut Chimney looks like fun. On Aonach Dubh West Face there is also some ice. Number Six Gully looks full of snow with not much ice obvious. The Screen is quite icy too. Cold weather this week will continue to build the ice and slowly settle the snow hopefully.
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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.