Southerly Winds

16th January 2021

Covid -19
The Scottish Avalanche Information Service issues information to support permitted activity under current Scottish Government guidance.
Please be aware of current mandatory travel restrictions in Local Authority areas within Scotland and respect local communities by referring to Scottish Government guidance and safe route choices for exercise. For further guidance please refer to the following information for hillwalkers and climbers and snowsports on ski and board.
This blog is intended to provide hazard and mountain condition information to help plan safer mountain trips.
Strong southerly winds over night have resulted in erosion of the existing snowpack on wind exposed slopes, with some icy patches in some places. Correspondingly windslab has been deposited, but any instabilities are generally confined to steep slopes above 1000 metres of a North, North-East and East aspect.
Fresh cornices are prone to collapse, as indicated by a small cornice triggered avalanche in Coire Cas overnight. Drifts and wind scoops at lower elevation also sport some localised cornicing, such as in the image below, taken just above a pisted track at approximately 850 metres.

Looking to the North from Coire Cas. Note the eroded snow in the middle distance following gale force southerly winds.

 

Collapse of a small cornice just above the pisted track. This hasty test took a few jumps on the firm slab above.

 

Significant drifting overnight. This is a north facing aspect in the ski area at 850 metres.

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