Blog Posts in Category: Winter

Hidden Chimney

It has been a few years since we winter climbed in Scotland, mostly due to injuries and conditions. This year we decided we wanted to get back into it, but unfortunately conditions were making it difficult. The option with the safest approach seems to be the Mess of Pottage at Coire an t-Sneachda in the Cairngorms. We decided to climb hidden chimney again as a suitable re-introduction to Scottish winter, unfortunately so did a large number of other people. The walk in was surprisingly easy given how much snow was on the ground, and by the time we had arrived in the coire the cloud had lifted and showed us an excellent view of the crag, and the army of climbers in front of us. Thankfully not many teams had already approached Hidden Chimney. We started the route behind out friends James and Jon and had a very enjoyable climb. It wasn’t too cold and the conditions on the climb were excellent, and very different to last time we climbed the route. There was some very poor crag etiquette going on with a team climbing over us and the team. Read the full article…

Geal-charn Mor

With the weather looking significantly better in the east we chose to do another Corbett to make the most of any of the better weather. The start of the walk took us up the Burma road, which was fairly snowy from a low level. Despite the snow we were able to make good progress and enjoy the brilliant views back towards the Cairngorms. As the snow became deeper we all put on our snow shoes, which made the path easier, but I don’t think they made a significant difference. As we left the path to head up to the summit the poor weather came in, so the compass came back out. The show shoes also started to provide a significant benefit and we were certainly grateful for them. The descent was lovely and it was really great to see the Cairngorms from afar and from up high. It was really impressive seeing the vast expanse and how easy it was to identify a number of the major features of the range.

The Fara

The weather forecast for the first day of our trip wasn’t brilliant, so we elected for a short day on a local Corbett called The Fara. The walk in along Loch Ericht in the morning was beautiful in the sunshine, the estate gatehouse was very impressive. After a relatively short distance we were at the start of the steep ascent up a clearing between different plantations. The start of the ascent was brutal as it involved a very steep ascent with very deep snow. As we got to the top of the plantations the gradient eased off, and the poor weather started to come in. Becky was able to make good use of her new snow shoes which made the going much easier for her. As we ascended the weather deteriorated and we were soon in the white room and unable to tell what was up from down. As we were approaching the summit we had to make a detour to avoid a slope which was fairly loaded with wind slab. After some quick lunch at the summit we made a hasty descent back down. It was fairly easy going. Read the full article…

Waun Rydd from Talybont Reservoir

After the recent snow we were keen to get out into the mountains. With an excellent forecast we decided to head over to the Brecon Beacons and climb up to the Waun Rydd plateau. We decided on this route as we hadn’t climbed up this side of the Pen y Fan massive before, so thought it would provide some new viewpoints. After a slow start which involved ascent on a road and then through a forrest, we were treated to a lovely climb up to Pen y Bryn with fantastic views back towards the Black Mountains and of our descent route. Once we got to the top of Pen y Bryn we had a brilliant view of Fan y Big and Cribyn. This view just kept getting better as we climbed up to the plateau. As we climbed the wind kept getting stronger, and it was a very cold wind! After traversing the plateau via the crash memorial site we found a cairn to hide behind to provide some limited shelter for some lunch. The last bit across the plateau to the descent was a bit of a slog, but. Read the full article…