Information and photos of my mountaineering trips in Scotland,England and Wales:
Including hillwalking,scrambling and easy rock climbing.Also via ferrata, skiing and alpine trips in Europe.

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Sunday, 18 November 2012

Loch Avon, 18th November 2012.

After a later start than planned, we walked into Coire an t-Sneachda to show Jon his first view of the crags and gullies he may get a chance to climb this winter (?). Although there was a wintery feel to the day with a cold wind, there wasn't actually much snow. We opted not to do the Fiacaill Ridge, thinking the forecast high winds might make it difficult on its higher sections. Another option was to scramble up by the Twin Ribs area, but in the end Jon liked the idea of getting up close to the crags, so we headed straight in towards the lochans and the stretcher box.  

I don't think there was much snow on the ridge either especially with the westerly wind. The Ficaill Buttress and Couloir were also pretty bare.
Looking towards Trident Gullies and Alladins area which were bare too. We didn't see many people out, just a father and son team heading for the Mess of Pottage area and a team of two climbing way to the right of the Trident Gullies where the climber path rises up to the plateau. The path , whrn you can find it is steep and straightforward, but there was alot of ice (and little snow), so we put crampons on to be safe. This was a first for jon which he enjoyed. I hadn't really expected to be using them , or an axe so it was good to get some brief use of them.      
At the top of the climbers path we stopped for a brief bite to eat, and saw the one person who passed us on the way up, head for Ben Macdui. From there we headed south to drop down into the Loch Avon basin.
On the descent, we noticed two "boxes/huts" at the foot of Shelterstone Crags. One had a window but as we didn't cross the water at the bottom, we never got to find out just what they were for?  
Passing the area of the Sheltersone, I managed to get a good shot of the Forefinger Pinnacle, in Forefinger Gully. Maybe one day I will climb it as it is only (?) V-Diff I think.
Lunch was on the beach!
Was this the quietist beach in Scotland this Sunday? Mind you, some romantic soul had been there I guess a few days ago as they had written "I love you" in the sand!

Jon and Gordon near the top of the steep and icy path up Coire Domhain with Loch Avon below.

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