pix from the slopes // cairngorm mountain
CairnGorm Mountain // Saturday 26th March 2011
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M2 becomes a rock garden just above the Aonach cut off - go slowly.

Good spring snow on Overyonder and the Aonach Bowl - but beware of rocks on the M2.

Good cover in the Ptarmigan Bowl, excellent areas for novices and large kicker with graded take offs.

Wide cover in the Ciste Bowl, light layer of fresh got rather sticky later in the day.

Looking along the Nessie Rollers on the Fiacaill Traverse.

Coire Cas was great for laying out some cruisey carves on, viewed from high on Coronation Wall.

More granular spring like snow on the West Wall Chair Run, some narrow areas by the Poma can be avoided skiers right of the Chair.

Top Basin from the top of the West Wall Chair Run.

Looking over the Zig Zags to the M1 and White Lady from the Fiacaill Ridge Poma.

Fiacaill Ridge Poma, a complete line skiers right, but heavy snow on Sat due to little use.

Cas Gunbarrel is still wide and pretty much flat across to the M1 queuing area from the Zig Zag link.

Looking down the White Lady to the Carpark Run. Bumps building on the Lady!

Fenced approach into the bottom of the WWP narrow in bits, but still passable.

Despite the week long thaw still great cover on the Ciste Fairway.

Going up the M1 Poma under clearing skies.

Snowheads let loose on CairnGorm Mountain!

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The weather cleared up mid morning to give good light and a mixture of sunny spells and a few light snow showers. At 10am the upper level of the Cas Carpark wasn't full, but the Cas Carpark did fill up late morning as people appeared with the better overhead conditions.

Despite the efforts of a week long SW'ly driven thaw the majority of the main mid and all upper mountain trails retain very good cover and the Carpark Run though thin and narrow in bits is still complete for returning to the Daylodge, meaning the full 1700ft of Cas side vertical is on offer.

Snow mid mountain is slowly getting towards granular spring like snow, but it's still generally quite heavy, though the White Lady improved through the day as bumps started to build. The West Wall and West Wall Chair Run (esp taking a line skiers right of the pylons to avoid narrow bits by the poma) and Aonach Bowl had somewhat quicker granular snow. Ciste Gully remains rather sticky and slow.

Coire Cas is in good shape and it was great for cruising about laying out some nice turns all day, though the Gunbarrel got bumpy later. Chicken Gully and all 4 legs of the Zig Zags are complete for Gunbarrel avoidance.

Coronation Wall and the Headwall were good AM, but the light layer of fresh got really slow and sticky later, same off the heavily used parts up top. On Sunday it will be worth exploring as the best surface conditions are likely to shift about through the day.

Top Basin has great cover and there is excellent areas for novices in the Ptarmigan Bowl, with light winds and settled weather the next few days it's perfect for learning.

It might not look all white and pretty as last week, but there is still good sport to be had, so don't miss out, get up there. No queues on the M1, West Wall Poma or Cas today.
Pix from the Slopes for the 2011 Season
CairnGorm Mountain

Nevis Range

Glencoe

Glenshee

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