Absence of Evidence is not Evidence of Absence…

5th February 2024

Absence of Evidence is not Evidence of Absence. This phrase was going through my head today as I attempted to make progress to even a modest altitude in Coire Cas. The West-South-Westerly winds were gale force again, and were particularly savage in Coire Cas as they accelerated over the plateau and Fiacaill a’Choire Chais producing turbulent gusts on the north easterly down slopes.

Given the variations in forecast snow amounts yesterday, evidence of snow above 1000 metres would have been a useful addition to today’s limited data collection. After struggling up hill for a while it was really impossible to tell. If summit snow was present at the highest elevations last night, it has been quickly washed away during daylight hours.

The summit temperatures from Cairn Gorm appear to have remained above freezing since at least 0700 hours this morning. Shortly after taking the screen shot below, both weather stations refused to provide any more data. But observations on the mountain support the view that it was both warm and very wet.

Flood warnings are in place in Strathspey, including in Newtonmore, Kingussie and Aviemore given the near constant rain. The good news is that the freezing level is due to fall overnight, gradually consolidating the snowpack and firming things up. This refreeze should bring better conditions, with the possibility of some snow showers reaching the Cairngorms later. The Avalanche Hazard is Low.


Cairn Gorm summit temperatures from this morning. Generously supplied by the Met Office. Shortly after this no data was returned after a maximum gust of 94 mph.


Significant snow loss at the Ptarmigan at 1080m. All the webcams from Cairngorm Mountain can be seen here at https://www.cairngormmountain.co.uk/live-webcams/


Cairngorm Mountain with very little snow. There were some hardy individuals training on the lower slope and using the conveyers despite the constant rain.


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