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firefly


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 17.34hrs on Sun 5 Oct 08
Liam,

I tried to answer this last year, but here is my theory.

There are two schools of thought. The first is that once the existing patches are exposed to new snowfall (in, say, September or October) then they have lasted till the ‘new’ snows. The problem with that theory is that what constitutes ‘new’ snow? When is the cut off between old and new? Since it is highly unusual to get snow in August on the mountains, it is generally inferred that anything earlier than August is ‘old’ and anything after is ‘new’. And if it does snow in August then is it new or old?!

The second school is that the 'old' snow ought to be covered sufficiently so that it doesn't melt in any subsequent thaw, thereby ensuring survival into the new calendar year: by which time the remaining snow is almost certain to persist until well into the year, as it will receive snow to a greater or lesser degree.

My own view is that a patch must be covered by new snow and persist until the following year to be classified as having "lasted".

liaml


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 17.42hrs on Sun 5 Oct 08
thanks firefly

firefly


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 19.39hrs on Mon 6 Oct 08
Attached is an incredible photograph from the 2nd October 1976 at Garbh Choire Mhor (thanks to John Pottie).

The picture shows the Pinnacles and Sphinx patches, which were feared would disappear sometime in September due to the abnormaly hot summer. Remarkably, a huge blizzard came on the 9th September and persisted until the 11th, burying the existing snow under much fresh snow. The picture shows, almost a month after the new snows fell, the clear line between new and old: giving a very visible explanation as to why the snow survived that year.

Attachments: Garbh Choire Mhor - 2.10.76.jpg (39kB)  
firefly


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 07.37hrs on Wed 8 Oct 08
Weather chart from the 9th September 1976! Check those conditions!!

Attachments: September 9 1976 Chart.gif (55kB)  
HTH


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 07.54hrs on Wed 8 Oct 08
I recall the following summer (1977) held a lot of snow, as it was my first serious exploration of the high tops, spending a week traversing all the main peaks.

I must dig out & scan some pics from that trip. There was a lot of snow remaining in late July '77. We built a sizeable snowman on Lochan Buidhe, and had a long slide at Feith Buidhe. Both Sputan Dearg & Garbh Coire retained large & wide cornices at the headwalls.

On the west coast, I recall Nevis retained extensive summit snow cover above the level of CMD Arrete.

BarryFolan


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 10.35hrs on Wed 8 Oct 08

take your word for it Henry, I was 3 at the time grinning smiley. love to see the photies though

cremrow


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 14.44hrs on Wed 8 Oct 08
I recall traversing Ben Macdhui on 6th or 7th Sept. Maybe that year I would have been 25. We were surprised to see such a heavy fall of snow. It had lain as low as Corrour Bothy and there was deep and complete cover on the plateau. I dont know how long this snow lasted for. it was melting quite rapidly. I have never been aware of such an early,heavy fall since then

Da kishman


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 18.29hrs on Wed 8 Oct 08
Temp.s look very mild over the next few days - anyone been to the patches recently? Did they get well covered in the cold burst or not? I'm seeing some lingering snow on the Cairn Gorm webcams so am assuming that the patches will have new snow covering them - looks completely snowless over west though.
That's a crackin' photo from 1976 byraway!

firefly


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 21.07hrs on Wed 8 Oct 08
Observations by others reported to me show that there are still wreaths in excess of 300m on the Cairngorms. The hollows facing south and southeast are well filled with snow, with some of the wreaths being 1-2m in depth: possibly more in favoured aspects.

There is a good chance that unless we come into a prolonged period (weeks) of mild weather, the snows in October will be the lasting snows, at least in the Cairngorms.

I intend to visit Nevis Range a on the 18th October to check on things there. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that Aonach Mor pulled through, and that Aonach Beag and Observatory Gully are still in decent nick. The west has obviously not benefitted as much as the Cairngorms in terms of snow accumulation.



Edited 1 times. Last edit at 21.07hrs Wed 8 Oct 08 by firefly.

Da kishman


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 21.24hrs on Wed 8 Oct 08
Cheers Firefly - look forward to your report!

snowpatch95


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 09.09hrs on Fri 10 Oct 08
Firefly - you might be interested in this trip report on the Scottish Hills site

[www.scottishhills.com]

Looks like the snows of last week gave reasonably deep accumulations - as you said 1 - 2m - in the right places.

They probably took a hammering though in the last 24 hours



Edited 1 times. Last edit at 09.12hrs Fri 10 Oct 08 by snowpatch95.

HTH


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 09.24hrs on Fri 10 Oct 08
That looked like a skiable patch on Stob Coire Sputan Dearg. smiling smiley

I wish I'd had the gumption to go for a hike last weekend.

flugeryl


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 18.30hrs on Sun 12 Oct 08
.

firefly


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 20.54hrs on Sun 12 Oct 08
Cairngorms update (thanks to John and Davie):

Garbh Uisge Beag still persisting, though much reduced. It has split into three, with one patch tiny, and two patches still around 10m long by as much as 1.5m deep. Looking touch-and-go for them, it seems.

Garbh Choire Mhor patches have been augmented by the recent snows, with sizeable drifts visible towards Sphinx and Pinnacles.

Report also in that Aonach Mor is gone, which wouldn't surprise me. If so, only Observatory Gully and Aonach Beag persisting. I'll visit Aonach Beag next Saturday to get accurate measurements of it, and will confirm the report of Aonach Mor. Will also report on Nevis if it's clear enough to see from the summit of Aonach Mor.

cremrow


Guest
Re: Attention all Walkers! 2008 Snow Patch Season
Date Posted: 07.33hrs on Mon 13 Oct 08
small patch visible on Aonach Mor from above Roy Bridge on 12th Oct

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