A blog of our mountain adventures in Scotland, hiking, biking, rock-scrambling and more !

Bidean nam Bian

12 March 2016
Mid-March and weather is on the turn ! Bidean nam Bian in Glencoe was planned for today with Richard leading. Here's his tale ...

photo 1 I met up with Judith, Sandra, Tom and John in a very damp Glencoe to head up Bidean nam Bian. It was with great enthusiasm that we made our way up with some trepidation about how wet the snow would be as a result of a big thaw that was going on today. There was a lot of water running off the cliffs and hills as we reached the icy snow line that was the trail up the Coire. It was very firm and soon crampons and ice axes were require to safeguard our progress up the mountain. It was slow going as we soon ran into snow bridges, deep snow that was thawing so sometimes it held and others it frustrated with a porridge like consistency at times.

photo 2 Eventually we reached the upper Coire in the cloud and had a break watching some climbers gearing up. It was awkward as we headed up the ridgeline to Stob Coire nan Lochan with hard ice, soft snow, rocks, cornices that hadn't collapsed yet and increasing wind with some rain. By the time we reached the cairn it was already afternoon and with deteriorating conditions and some tired legs we decided to retrace our steps to the Coire where we had a very late lunch with a small burst of brightness showing us the Coire, some climbers and some Avalanche debris. It soon began to rain heavily again and we set of down the steep descent back to the cars enjoying the deeper snow sections and some surprisingly dry spells. One of the snow bridges was beginning to crack, but held out as we crossed the stream.

Everyone was pleased to reach the cars and there were some very tired legs in the group though some of them where off to a ceilidh!

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