Monday, March 02, 2015

171. Stuc a'Chroin (182) 27/2/2015

A great wintery walk in the hills. The weather conditions were better than expected - not too much precipitation and only cloud later on. There was a bit of wind, but not enough to slow us. In fact, it was a pity we didn't have time to try something a bit longer given the conditions that followed in the subsequent days. However, we had spent the previous night in Penrith, so only an 11am start was possible.

Walking from the Glen Ample side of the hill took us over the corbett called Beinn Each and along the complex south west ridge of Stuc a'Chroin. The snow was nice and deep and whilst there were a few slightly steep sections, nothing was beyond our abilities. We were also climbing from the best direction for having the wind at our backs and having solid non-avalanchy-snow to climb. After the corbett, we had the hill to ourselves and the landscape was a beautiful unspoilt blanket of white. This was close to the most snow I've seen on Scottish mountains and we made good use of our axes - both for safety in negotiating obstacles and occasionally for aiding our playing in the snow.

I would have been even happier had I not put my foot through some ice into a patch of bog before the final climb, but I had to keep Joe company in the soggy feet department. Something which I repeated on the following day equally joyously.

It was rather chilly at the top and we didn't hang around long, but we were able to get some idea of the steep descent over the cornices towards Ben Vorlich, but couldn't see far in the cloud.

A sleety drizzle accompanied some of our descent off the side of the ridge, but we were soon back on the path down Glen Ample. A 6hr round trip shows the going was a bit slower in the deep snow.

Joe and his North Face.

Coming over Beinn Each

Nice hat!

The summit cairn, constructed from fence posts


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