Mild with increasingly patchy cover…

18th December 2023

A mild day in the Northern Cairngorms today with a temperature of 6.6 Degrees Celsius recorded in Coire an t-Sneachda at 1100 hrs. Unsurprisingly the snow is rapidly diminishing in these temperatures, also aided by rain falling at all elevations.

On the summit of Cairn Gorm the weather station indicates that the winds have been gale force for much of the morning, increasingly to storm force in the afternoon. Given their generally westerly direction, it was actually relatively sheltered in the coire for a change.

Tomorrow looks, in part, to herald a significant change as a cold front moves south east bringing a cold north-westerly flow. Snow showers are expected which will be a welcome change. The winds however will remain storm force resulting in a very challenging day in the mountains. Although colder for a time warmer conditions will quickly follow.

Small and isolated accumulations of new snow, or windslab will be deposited in very steep wind sheltered locations. But these are expected to be small and avoidable, the vast majority of any snow being blown into atmosphere.


About as bright as things got to day on the hill, and the only brilliant white snowflake that I saw in my travels.


The mountain rescue kit box and the very patchy snow cover that remains. Spot the group traveling towards the ‘Goat Track’ high on the crag apron. The “fingers” on ‘Fingers Ridge’ are just visible high above.


Visitors to Coire an t-Sneachda giving some scale to the rapidly diminishing snow patches.

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