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firefly


Posts: 2149
Joined: May 2006
2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 20.57hrs on Sat 17 Jan 15
A new year, new snow patches! For the last few years this thread has proved enormously useful for the collation of information at the end of the season. Also, it's good to see the photos and read the reports from the different areas across the country as the season wears on.

The storms of the last week or so have been from the west. This is excellent news for east-facing hollows. Huge volumes are present in some places, and a photo from today of Ben Nevis (see here) shows the foot of Zero Gully already totally loaded. Doubtless Observatory Gully will be very deep, too, as will Aonachs Mor and Beag.

snowpatch94 was up at Ciste Mhearad today, and the photo below shows a huge depth already. Excellent for early-season! What encourages me about this photo and others I've seen is the amount of bare, wind-scoured ground. Maybe not so great for skiers, but when you see wind-scoured ground it means that the snow has settled somewhere. And given the prevalence of westerly winds, this means in sheltered, east facing hollows.

Ciste Mhearad - 17.01.2015 (Alex Barbour) by iainjamescameron, on Flickr

I took a walk up Meall nan Tarmachan today in very difficult conditions (deep powder), though the weather was stunning. An example of the very large drifts can be seen below, and a full suite of pictures is here.

Untitled by iainjamescameron, on Flickr
Norseman


Posts: 51
Joined: Jun 2012
Last Visited: 18:00
4th May 2019
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 17.16hrs on Sun 18 Jan 15
Looked like a cracking Winters day. Great photos too.
firefly


Posts: 2149
Joined: May 2006
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 19.30hrs on Mon 19 Jan 15
Di Gilbert's photo of Braeriach, taken today: [4.bp.blogspot.com]

Garbh Choire Mor in partial shadow, but the other corries look as though they've had a very good covering.
alan


Posts: 10745
Joined: Nov 1994
Last Visited: 14:52
26th Feb 2021
What's this?What's this?What's this?
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 13.42hrs on Sat 24 Jan 15
Looking at snow depth measurements on the upper slopes on Meall a' Bhuiridh, taken at the same locations each time:

14/1/14 HV 200cm MB 442cm
29/1/14 HV 252cm MB 589cm

Most recent one this year:

18/1/15 HV 150cm MB 520cm

So different wind directions coming into play but still a shed load of snow, Happy Valley was behind but Main Basin probably slightly ahead of same point last season, but then late Jan storms piled snow into the upper Main Basin and it's depth shot up. Will we see a big gain this week ?
h11lly


Posts: 2150
Joined: Dec 2002
Last Visited: 18:38
2nd Sep 2019
What's this?What's this?What's this?
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 19.00hrs on Thu 12 Feb 15
Had a look at Ciste Mhearad today when I was up briefly this afternoon. Quite a hollow with, as usual, a bank on the south side that had a rather beautiful cornice.
It was solid though - potential snow-holers would struggle with a shovel and need an ice axe to make progress ! Even in the sun at 3pm the snow was still pretty hard.

Some photos [www.flickr.com]

Helen
firefly


Posts: 2149
Joined: May 2006
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 17.39hrs on Wed 25 Feb 15
Sorry for the lack of activity on here, but here's a return to form with a selection of very fine snaps from the SAIS Chaps at Aonach Mr: [lochaberblog.sais.gov.uk]

Coire an Lochain looking very snowy indeed. Almost on a par with 2014, and easily the match of 2008.
firefly


Posts: 2149
Joined: May 2006
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 08.39hrs on Sat 7 Mar 15
For those of you who've ever crossed the Allt a' Mhuillin on the way up to the CIC hut at Ben Nevis... If you attempt it at present then this is what you'll face! [lochaberblog.sais.gov.uk]
firefly


Posts: 2149
Joined: May 2006
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 00.14hrs on Thu 12 Mar 15
Blair Fyffe's photo from yesterday on Ben Nevis. Lots of snow, and comparable to 2008, I think. A couple of similar dates for comparison. Quite a bit more this year. However, this year there's the benefit of a very large and icy core buried beneath! I suspect this will prolong its life somewhat, once we get to the business end of the season!

Observatory Gully (wide) - 10.03.2015 by iainjamescameron, on Flickr

Observatory Gully - 05.03.11 by iainjamescameron, on Flickr

Observatory Gully - 18.03.12 by iainjamescameron, on Flickr
firefly


Posts: 2149
Joined: May 2006
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 07.14hrs on Sat 14 Mar 15
Aonach Mr yesterday. Looking very decent. [lochaberblog.sais.gov.uk]
firefly


Posts: 2149
Joined: May 2006
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 08.04hrs on Sat 14 Mar 15
And for lovers of aerial footage, here's one from me, yesterday showing the deep cover on NE aspects in the Southern Highlands. Remember to select HD! [youtu.be]
firefly


Posts: 2149
Joined: May 2006
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 18.13hrs on Sun 22 Mar 15
Some cracking comparison photos and analysis of Aonach Mor from Blair Fyffe. [lochaberblog.sais.gov.uk]
Freeheel


Posts: 337
Joined: Feb 2007
Last Visited: 12:20
22nd Dec 2016
What's this?What's this?What's this?
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 15.12hrs on Mon 23 Mar 15
Thanks Firefly, comparisons are always interesting I think.

Reading that the SAIS guys suggest the snow might see out the summer for another year on Aonach Mor (or is that tempting fate?) how would you say the depth in the backs compares with last year? eye rolling smiley

Cheers

Freeheel


firefly


Posts: 2149
Joined: May 2006
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 15.40hrs on Mon 23 Mar 15
Anyone making pronouncements in March on longevity of snow is a braver man than I! Blair's up there far more often than I am, however, so his assessment of snow-depths and associated survivals are to be taken seriously. Plus he has the honour of being a 'proper' snow specialist (his PhD was in slab avalanches), as opposed to my amateur fumblings!

Looking at the depth of cover, I'd say we're not in the same place as 2014, but comparable to 2008 (though not quite as much: see here, compared to Blair's link). It'd also be nice to see some good dumps of snow for the next 5 weeks. That's what was missing from last year: by this time the last big snow-falls were almost a distant memory.

Certainly there's enough snow on Aonach Mor to see it through, but as usual it'll all depend on summer weather. If it's an 'average' summer then I'd be confident. If it's overly wet or mild then not.

Ask me again in August!
brianwr


Posts: 223
Joined: Feb 2004
Last Visited: 20:09
26th Feb 2021
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 10.25hrs on Tue 24 Mar 15
I skied into An Cul Choire on Saturday, presumably the famous patch is under there somewhere!

[home2.btconnect.com]
firefly


Posts: 2149
Joined: May 2006
Re: 2015 Scottish snow patch season
Date Posted: 12.25hrs on Tue 24 Mar 15
Indeed it is, Brian. Well buried, and long may it remain so.
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