pix from the slopes // cairngorm mountain
CairnGorm Mountain // Sunday 21st February 2010
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Skiers pondering the options from the Daylodge Poma, tracked up East Wall and Coire Laogh Mor beyond.

Tracked up Coire Laogh Beag seen from the Laogh Mor Return.

Is that the beginning of bumps in Coire Laogh Mor!

Skier packed powder in Coire Laogh Mor beyond the pisted trail on the Laogh Mor Return to the car park.

The pisted Loagh Mor Return traversing the East Wall. Skier packed powder on a hard base on the Wall, some icy patches.

Ptarmigan Tow from the pisted expanse skiers right of the T-bar. Various lines out along the Ptarmigan Ridge .

Rollers on the Ptarmigan Traverse heading back to the Top Station.

Ptarmigan Restaurant with Loch Morlich beyond.

Looking over the Top Basin from the Loagh Mor Return fenceline.

Ptarmigan Terrain Park with various rails and the big kicker.

West Wall Poma and Ciste Fairway. Meall a' Bhuachaille beyond Glenmore.

CairnGorm Mountain from the foot of the Burnside Run.

The fish and chip van was doing an amazing trade with the sunny calm weather!

Looking up the M2 and over the top of the Aonach Bowl to the Aonach Bynack.

West Wall Chairlift and Poma from the Poma queue late in the afternoon.

Looking down the lower Aonach Bowl into the fenced narrows, fantastic snow all the way to the car park.

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Another bluebird day for CairnGorm Mountain with the cold temperatures maintaining generally fantastic surface conditions, though a few high traffic areas are getting rather firm to hard in places, most notably Overyonder - stay above it or below it for a much better line.

Away from the upper mountain the best surface conditions are to be found a little off the beaten track or recently groomed areas, with wide expanses of skier packed powder to explore.

The Top Basin is absolutely superb with a ridiculously wide expanse of machine packed powder to play in. There is also good nursery areas at the Daylodge Level and there were beginner classes out on the Hayfield at Glenmore.

For more advanced riders with the fine weather there is almost endless options both within and beyond the ski patrol area, on and off the pisted stuff.

The Ciste Gully has been pisted to the steeps back up to the Ciste Carpark and is one of 2 groomed lines offering up 2000ft of vertical, the other being the Laogh Mor Return which if you start at the top of the Ptarmigan can offer a run of around 3 miles - but though groomed this does take you well beyond the patrol boundary (keep an eye on the weather as it's easy to overshoot the Ciste Carpark with current snow cover).

Beyond Coire Laogh Mor the powder is now getting tracked up in Coire Laogh Beag and beyond onto the slopes above Lochan na Beinne - but you need to cut back fairly high to hold a traverse to the Ciste Carpark and that sort of terrain should not be attempted if unfamiliar to the area without the proper navigation gear, also there is still a Considerable Avalanche Forecast in place - Play Safe.

Quite simply given the forecast, forget work on Monday, it is likely to be quieter with most areas now finished half term, and the cover on the mountain is worth unemployment!
Pix from the Slopes for the 2010 Season
CairnGorm Mountain

Glencoe

Hillend

Nevis Range

Glenshee

The Lecht

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