Monday, 4 April 2011

Gyhll Scrambling on the Zig Zags

After my last bit of winter work last weekend I took some time off to catch up with friends and rest after the winter. Come Friday I was raring to go again, unfortunately it hasn't really stopped raining since then. Over the last few days we have had some dry weather but just when you think the rock should be just about dry in comes another heavy shower and it starts all over again. I've had a couple of wasted trips into Glen Nevis thinking I was going to get on the rock only for it to start raining either when I got out of the car or just as I turned onto the road into the Glen.

Anyway back to today. I was out with John Sparks today who is a freelance outdoors journalist that is writing a piece on The Outdoor Capital for Outdoor Enthusiast magazine. He has been in Fort William for a couple of days now and had already been mountain biking at Nevis Range and spent some time with other local outdoor people taking photos. Unfortunately the weather today was not the greatest. It had been raining heavily for most of the night and was forecast to keep raining until the evening. So I decided a short blast would probably be a better idea. We got out the car in Glencoe and it wasn't long till we were stood at the foot of the Zig Zags watching the water pouring down the slab. At the end of the first terrace there is a well polished corner that takes you up to the next terrace but only today it was like a river. We swam our way up it with water pouring down our sleeves and running over our legs and then continued to the cairn on Gearr Aonach.

By now the rain had turned to heavy sleet and we were no longer sheltered from the wind so we got our heads down and walked to Coire nan Lochain against the driving sleet and rain. I think we were both glad when we made it back to the car. A good day representing, the delights of the Outdoor Capital but still a fun one. No photos today as I didn't want to trash my camera, I'm already a phone down from the rain today.

Reports of winter climbing are getting thin now but there was heavy snowfall today above 1000m but the temperature has gone up this afternoon and from the looks of the Ben a lot of it has been stripped back already. People have been on good friday climb, ledge route and smiths. The high ice might hold on for a bit longer but with all this heavy rain and higher temps, I'm not sure how long.

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