Monday, 30 November 2015

Great Expectations

Gorns2 from C Coid on Vimeo.

Craig and Mark packed late and got up for an early start before the early bird.  An early visit to what was hoped would be a snowy Cairngorm saw lots of white stuff on the way up.

Snowgates closed at Glenmore didn't bode well but 903am saw them open and we were second on the path from the carpark.  We trooped in but met a couple of kent faces walking out - overnight in the Sugarbowl gave them a head start.  They were disappointed and saw only black faces...ever the optimists, Craig and Mark wandered on in increasing wind and wind blown snow abounding.

Near the lochans, all was revealed; plenty white about but not on the faces and pretty thin all round and not overly cold, bar the windchill.

A chat, a cooling in the gusting wind and a sense check that said not sensible nor ethical winter climbing saw the guys walk out for coffee and thin reindeer biscuits in the drabbest coffee house at the new 'Natural Retreat'.

A few tasks in Aviemore and then down the road...good grief, the drive up and down is dire with the new speed cameras - stuck behind a lorry at 50mph; that's more dangerous than the old system with impatient drivers and icy roads!

Nice to get out and walk the ropes and tools but sadly its not winter yet, unless you enjoy blunting metal and scratching rock!

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Noah...nuff said!

Biblically bad forecast for rain at lunchtime saw Craig and Mark make a plan for a quick hit in the Coe to stretch the legs, burn some calories and get out and about for some fun time.

Craig takes up the story...
"Having never quite got round to doing Dinnertime Buttress in the west end of Glen Coe, I was keen to sort that out and given the forecast, a quick ascent might give us a nice day out.  A quick drive up, already on 'deer watch' saw us head off up the ridge before 9am.  It's a pretty relentless 30-35' slope most of the way up but we made good time to reach the path proper where the rock buttress begins.

The rock was a bit slippery in places and care was always required but it's a lovely route up with terrific views all round the glen.  Higher up, options exist for some fun in a chimney line and we found a nice way all the way to the top on steeper ground.

Near the top, the view west was laden with rain clouds and the wind began swirling around us and in the next 5 minutes, the Jottnar waterproofs were out and taking a serious soaking (2 hrs earlier than forecast) which they did for the rest of the day...a truly challenging day in the wind and rain but great fun nonetheless.

As is our want, we snuggled down on the ridge for soup (Heinz tomato of course) and a sandwich...which it transpired was still on my kitchen worktop!!  The excellent MSR Windboiler worked a treat in the conditions and after a quick bar and cuppa, we were off into Corrie nan Lochan".

A fine day out for Craig and Mark who laughed at the amount of water coming off the hills in various unlikely locations on the drive down.  Noah was no doubt busy today!