What a Difference Another Day Makes.

4th January 2023

Another day, another very different mountain and snowpack experience. Overnight the freezing level had risen to around 1200 metres, before dropping down to 1000 metres where it remained through the day. This fluctuation has helped consolidate the snowpack, it all felt pretty stable today. Another difference was the winds, or more specifically the lack of them. It was much calmer than yesterday with a westerly breeze. However, with strong Southerlies returning tomorrow with some rain in the afternoon, looks like tomorrow will yet again be very different to today.

Loch Morlich this morning. Conditions were calm and murky. The loch is still semi-frozen surface. The overall air temperature (according to my car) was plus three or four degrees. In the calm conditions the air close to the surface of the loch was cooled by the surface of the water/ice being at zero degrees. In the humid conditions this was enough to cause the  moisture to condense out, forming and thin layer of mist which hung over the East (left side in the photo) side of the Loch.

The view at 1000m on an exposed windward slope. Can you spot the Ptarmigan, there is genuinely one there, it’s camouflage works really well in these conditions.

A bit easier to spot when on a  snow patch. There is actually another ptarmigan lurking in the rock in the  top left corner of the shot which I had not noticed when I took the photo.

The view into Coire an Lochan. Although it brightened up down in the glen through the day, the summits stayed in the cloud.

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