Saturday 12th May 2012
With a lot of (very) late season snow having fallen on the higher mountains, and sunny weather forecast for Saturday, Jon and Hazel headed off to the Cairngorms and met a friend for some ski touring to try and salvage something what has been a fairly disappointing ski season in Scotland (despite the promising start in December and January!) They were rewarded with fantastic conditions which were by far the best all season – a good foot or two of fresh consolidated powder snow, with several layers below providing a sound base. The cover was excellent above about 800 metres with the entire Cairngorm plateau being an unbroken snowfield. They walked from the ski centre car park to the mid station and took the M1 lift up, taking full advantage of the £5 ski mountaineer ticket to save time, then skinned up to the summit, and down the other side across the plateau towards Ben Macdui, returning via Lurchers Gully. Due to the fierce May sunshine the snow surface did get a bit wet and sticky into the afternoon but it was still the best day of the season by far! Some walking was needed to get back to the car park but it was well worth it.