Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Avalanche in Twisting Gully today!

Matt exploring, such fun picking our way up to the summit.
Crest Route, looking good and a much safer option on the ridges and steeper routes at the mo!

Dorsal Arete covered in new snow.

Crown Wall above Twisting Gully, You can see the scoured head wall.

I had a trip down memory lane today when I met up with Matt Heffer MIC whom I did my MIA training course with in 1994! We headed up into Stob Coire nan Lochan to have a look-see at what the conditions are like as we both have clients booked in over the next few days and into the weekend.
It was raining on the walk in but by mid morning it had cleared up rather nicely. It felt warm and a little quiet in the coire. We were concerned about the new snow and the large cornices hanging over most of the gullies. We were keen to seek out an alternative to the Dorsal Arete and it's ques. So we headed over to the Boomerang Arete area and found some great mixed ground, neve and easier ridge climbing.
Half way up We heard an avalanche go off in the snow fan above Twisting Gully. Two climbers were climbing at the time and We were very happy to hear their shouts of relief after the avalanche had settled!
A large crown wall could be easily seen below the cornice on the right hand side. We had met a couple gearing up to do Twisting, luckily it all happened before they got to close. It is known for it, but to see it at first hand was pretty thought provoking! We continued cautiously!

There were parties out on Crest Route, loads of folk on Dorsal Arete and quiet a few folk enjoying the lovely North East ridge up and over the summit.
Some hefty cornices are forming and the thaw predicted will make these even more unstable, time to consider carefully our route choices!