After a poor winter how things can change! I’d packed my ski gear away (shoved it in the garage anyway) weeks ago and turned my attention to scrambling in Torridon on a couple of occasions but the recent snow falls were too much to ignore. After continual snow on Friday 11th Cairngorm ski centre was open for business today, 12th May, packed with snow starved skiers. It was too busy for me so I stuck the skins on and headed over Cairngorm for Coire Raibert. There were more off piste skiers and ski tourers than I’ve ever seen over the back there but there’s plenty of space.
Below, the view from my lunch spot across the Loch Avon basin to Beinn Mheadhoin, Loch Etchachan and Ben Macdui from Stac an Fharaidh. A group had made some lovely tracks over the other side of the loch down from Beinn Mheadhoin into Coire Bhuidhe above Loch Avon, a very nice effort.
After a couple of runs south from Cairngorm I plodded round the northern corries and descended from Coire Lochan to Lurcher’s Gully, taking the view below through the Lairig Ghru to Cairn Toul. Avalanche debris was prominent on Sron na Lairige. The warm sun was affecting the snow conditions lower down but it is May after all.
There’s a deep low coming tomorrow and perhaps further snow fall in the next few days so this might not be quite the end of the season.
Jason Bonniface, 12/05/2012