Today I was out with Pip who has done a her share of Alpine and high altitude peaks but only sampled a few Scottish winter routes. With Ben Nevis being one of the few mountains still in winter condition we made plans to climb on its North face as to which route we would tackle, I was unsure.
The hurricane winds that were forecast didn’t materialise but as we approached the CIC Hut and looked into Coire na Ciste it was clear there had been significant snowfall above 900m. All the major gully’s had evidence of fresh debris and we even witnessed a considerable avalanche slide over The Chute to the right of Italian Climb.
Along with Jamie and a few others, we played it safe and climbed Ledge Route which is broken in places with a few loose rocks worth avoiding. Pip had no issues with negotiating the tricky steps and enjoyed the fine positions as the route winds its way up through Carn Dearg Buttress. It rained most of the day and felt humid and typically ‘Scottish’, lets hope for a colder day tomorrow. This weekend I am working for Abacus Mountain Guides.