Cairngorm (not winter skills), 11 January 2020

A blog post from one of our mountain adventures in the Scottish hills and mountains. A guided day hillwalking up Cairngorm in very not-winter conditions, Richard Kermode was leading.

Cairngorm (not winter skills !)

The original plan had been an introduction to winter skills and due to the absence of good snow cover this had been changed during the week. Luckily some of the group where happy to have a walk in the northern corries of the Cairngorms instead.

I met up with Laura, Michelle, Laura and Alessandra at Tiso for a coffee and planning session as the weather was not great with heavy rain or snow up high and strong winds all day long... after discussing options we set off for the ski centre to see about going up Cairngorm and take it from there. The rain was bouncing and the wind got stronger as we walked up the main track in Corrie Cas. There were some patches of snow about but all with rocky runouts and not extensive.

By the time we reached the Ptarmigan it was really windy and snowing heavily so using the building for shelter we took on some food and drink and dry gloves before going direct for the summit of Cairngorm. It was brutal with blizzard conditions and 50mph winds making for a challenging finale to the climb. A quick photo and we went down via windy ridge through driving snow and strong gusty winds to drip dry at the cafe with some hot soup! It was fun and worth the effort though a longer day out wouldn't have been very enjoyable!

More photos by Richard Kermode are here on Flickr.

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