Monday, 1 February 2010

fooled by the forecast

On Friday I met my brother, Nige, halfway in Glencoe. The forecast was poor, high winds, low cloud, very cold, snow showers. A short conference in the car park in a hoolie concluded that we didn't want to be hanging around on belay ledges, and that a mountaineering day in the Lost Valley was in order. After 3 hours of trudging up the glen under steadily improving skies, we realised we'd made the wrong choice, and that we didn't have the hardwear with us to take advantage of the excellent conditions.

We went up Right Hand Gully (I/II) and encountered some patches of windslab and one very tiring patch of seemingly bottomless soft snow, moved together, and finished up the right hand side of the headwall, possibly on the line of Granny's Groove (III). It must have been very banked out as we saw no sign of the 'good belays', or the 'cul de sac' in the gully, or the 'scoop' or 'overhang' on the right!

There was no cornice on the bealach, and it was a pleasurable descent back to the clachaig for coke and chips. Far better than being in the office!

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