Ski Sunday….

17th March 2019

Everybody I met today was out on skis – making the most of the recent snow. (Apologies to those skiers who let me take a photo of them for the blog – my phone had so much spindrift under the screen protector it failed to take the shot – Great to meet you and your amazing dog that has perfected the art of taking the unsuspecting victim off their feet from behind!)

You know that there’s been two essential ingredients for poor stability when you check out the webcams in the morning and see this…

The snow gates at Braemar got closed last night due to drifting snow on the road.

This lets me know that even at lower elevations the snow has been moving around in the wind. Luckily the road opened quickly and I joined the slow moving queue driving up to the Glenshee Ski Centre. With the strong NW winds I decided to take a trip up and over Glas Maol to the East face which is a usual candidate for avalanche activity in these conditions. Unfortunately visibility was appalling and I was lucky to see 10 metres in front of me. What was obvious straight away was that yesterday’s snow that fell in relatively light winds had all been stripped and moved onto lee slopes. There’s a real mixture of scoured and icy slopes and deep drifts and wind lips at the moment. Interestingly the freezing level seemed to do an unexpected trip up to 900 metres today and my frozen up waterproofs went wet and soggy – This was helping to consolidate the windslab at lower elevations. Further fluctuations in the freezing level, easing winds and very little new precipitation will see the consolidation process continue. Hopefully the visibility will improve tomorrow and we’ll be able to get a better look at what’s out there.

Raised ski track – a good indication that loose snow has been stripped from this location and deposited elsewhere.

Heavily rimed wheel at the top of the Glas Maol tow at 1020m. Feathers pointing into the prevailing wind.

Comments on this post

  • patrick
    17th March 2019 6:09 pm

    good to finally meet you!
    I do seem to have that effect on cameras….
    keep up the sterling work!
    (I was the one with no dog!)

  • Sam
    18th March 2019 9:44 am

    Hi (don’t know your name, sorry)

    I check the blogs every day to give me an idea of what’s going on when I can’t see for myself (working elsewhere 🙁 ).

    Just want to say that I very much like the effort you put into posting on here and the way you inject your personality into it.

    I find the blog informative and it helps me make the decision to head up or not when I get chance, so, thank you 🙂

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