DAY 2 OF THE SCOTTISH SEASON 16/17.
I had taken another long weekend off work, and I knew I wanted to travel somewhere to car camp again. It looked like Saturday was going to be bright, there had been snowfall and the Friday 6 O’clock News was all about the Scottish Ski areas opening at last. It wouldn’t be ideal though. I think they really want the families up there while kids are off school.
The second choice was to travel to Castle Tioram in Ardnamurchan. I was thinking it would make a good subject first thing in the morning, especially if the sun were to rise behind it.
I decided to pack late and leave at 5 in the morning. The draw of snow was too much. Nevis Range seemed to have the best write-up and I knew Glencoe would not be opening the top tows. It was hard, but as the day dawned, I found myself driving past Glencoe Mountain Resort. My season ticket still burning hole in my pocket. No matter, it still gets me a discount at the other resorts.
I arrived at Nevis Range just after 8am and grabbed something to eat. It looked cloudy up top, and as I ascended it didn’t improve.
Snow conditions were scrappy at best. The summit runs were decent, but the rest of the hill was really just frozen tussocks of grass and heather. There was a brisk south easterly wind that was bitterly cold. This isn’t best for bringing snow to the western mountains, but I’ll take it over rain!
It was a choice of riding good snow in zero visibility, or being able to see, and hopping rocks while turning on the skier packed ice slopes down the side of the snow fences.
I spent most of my time up top in the sensory deprivation of a typical Scottish whitemare. At least it got the muscles working again. I really needed this, it had been a long wait.
The sun tried to make an appearance later in the afternoon and really only broke through as I descended in the gondola back towards the carpark.
Good to get out, and I still have Monday off. Maybe a small chance of visiting Coe, but the wind looks like it could be an issue.
Now I need to go get supplies for my night in the car, its going to be a cold one.