The W*** word!

21st February 2022

I’ve had the pleasure of the company of a number of my SAIS colleagues recently as we all complete some CPD. The South Cairngorm forecast area has hosted observers who have recently worked in all the six forecast areas. The common topic of conversation has been this year’s WIND speeds. Oh heck – I just went and used the W*** word again. We can’t seem to get away from it… Today was no different with average wind speeds of 71 mph at 930 metres at 10am this morning, gusting 83 mph. These are pretty ferocious speeds to be operating in and you definitely need to be well sorted in how you manage your equipment and yourself….So it was hoods up, goggles on and pin everything down that isn’t firmly attached to your body!

A little bit cooler than yesterday with the freezing level around 850 metres. Some snow showers rapidly blowing through and persistent heavy drifting at altitude. Underfoot there’s a real mixture with wind scoured areas and deeper drifts in wind sheltered locations. There was also a lot of ‘roller balling’ occurring on steep South-East and South facing aspects, when the sun came out between the showers.

Severe gale force winds again tomorrow with stronger gusts…..Oh joy!

General cover improving with areas of both shallow and deep snow encountered today.

Looking across Coire Direach with Carn nan Sac (920m) on the far left of the shot.

Deep drifts forming in wind sheltered locations.

Large wind feature formed behind a sheltering building.

Stormy conditions looking South towards the A93 from Coire Direach. Scoured West aspects, deeper snow on East aspects.

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