Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Coire an t-Sneachda and the Cairngorm Plateau

Staying with the Cairngorms theme, but heading north, Wally and I spent a couple of days in the Northern corries at the start of the week.  On Sunday, we had an easy day, recovering from our Beinn a Bhuird trip, and wandered in to Coire an Lochain and practised some basic snowcraft on the hard old snowack in the pack of the coire. Digging buckets and bollards under the current conditions is hard work! On Monday, we felt refreshed from a rest day, and walked in to Coire an t-Sneachda.  We took the Goat Track out of the coire, and wandered across the plateau in deteriorating conditions.

Despite a little fresh snow, the coverage was still very thin in the areas that had been stripped of old snow in the recent thaw. 

 Crampons on for the climb up the Goat track.  On Monday this was icy, steep, with a hard rocky runout. 

 Near the top the wind was gusting and visibility deteriorated rapidly. 

The forecast had indicated that visibility would be good, but in reality cloud descended and the wind whipped up spindrift, making the going tough across the plateau. We dipped in to Coire Domhain to check out some old snowholes, and then headed up Coire Raibert and down via "point 1141".

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