Braw today but not tomorrow

3rd April 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.
Braw today but all change tomorrow, as a cold front approaches from the North-West bringing gale to storm force winds. Some snow is expected but amounts are likely to be small. It will be a very different mountain experience from today, which was characterised by light winds and great visibility.
After a clear night the surface of the snowpack was frozen due to a radiation freeze. The snow softened quickly where exposed to direct sunlight (e.g. south facing adret slopes) but remained icy and frozen on the shady north facing slopes (ubacs). For those travelling on ski today within their Local Authority area, the choice of slope aspect and timing will have made a huge difference to the experience. Either “rattly” or spring “corn”.

Carn Etchachan seen from the top of Stag Rocks. Unfortunately over the last couple of weeks the snow has been stripped away from the boulder fields leaving some consequential run out zones.

 

The view down Loch Avon. The spring snowpack can be seen in the foreground, largely homogeneous apart from some icy melt freeze crusts. Still a good idea to give these holes in stream beds a wide berth.

 

 

Avalanche debris under Hells Lum. This most likely came down early this morning, and was due to some remnants of cornice and snow lying on rock slabs triggering naturally in the sun.

 

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