pix from the slopes // cairngorm mountain
CairnGorm Mountain // Saturday 5th May 2012
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Top Basin queues were never more than a few minutes, often just a few in front today.

Wide Ciste Fairway, Bowl still has wide cover either side of burn, best on East Wall side.

Hitting a new long wide rail in the Terrain Park on the Ciste Fairway.

Notice anything?

Packed powder corduroy on the Fiacaill Traverse.

Piste Basher farming snow for the lower 105, should be improved again for Sunday.

Chicken Gully though very narrow provided a way to the entrance of the M1 loading area. Will be rough and rutted till snow loosens up.

Snow shower over the Ptarmigan Bowl. Groomer down the ridge had a sweet layer of fresh snow.

A wee stash of fresh between Traverse and 105. Coronation Wall groomed above there this afternoon.

Dropping off the Fiacaill Traverse into the far skiers left of the Cas Boulderfield unearthed some nice snow.

M1 RaceTrack, hard grippy snow that takes a sharp edge nicely, loosened up later. Full width to timing hut then very narrow.

M1 Poma and Funicular taking people up the mid-mountain. Funicular mid-stopping.

Deep and total snow cover at the top of the Ptarmigan Tow.

A Sunny Spell in Coire Cas. First thing to loosen up and some fresh snow drifted in as well.

Winchcat heading off up the Ptarmigan Traverse to winch part of Coronation Wall.

Outside the Top Station, still total cover on the Ptarmigan Ridge and upper reaches of the East Wall.

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It was a wee bit nippy on CairnGorm Mountain this morning compared to mid-week, definitely back to the winter gear and not t-shirt skiing for the first day of the early May long weekend.

Despite the very warm conditions mid-week there is still plenty of fun to be had with terrain for all ability levels on offer and some more technical features added to the Terrain Park. There's also green, blue, red and a black groomer to play on, Coronation Wall was winched above the Traverse on Saturday afternoon.

The base has now firmed up, with a layer of fresh in places. Ptarmigan runs and Ciste Fairway had benefited from heavy pisting, while the groomed line on the Ptarmigan Ridge had a nice layer of fresh.

Because of the short hoof required to get back to the mid-station and M1 Poma, many opted to stay up top, but some of the best riding was mid-mountain. Coire Cas loosened up into spring snow first and there was sweet pisted fresh on the Fiacaill Traverse and surprisingly good fun to be had far out in the Cas Boulderfield, esp taking lines from around the fences on the Fiacaill Traverse.

Upper M1 and Lady have full cover, but it gets a bit more interesting near the bottom on both. M1 fine till timing hut then very narrow. Huge piles of farmed snow were waiting to be pushed down the lower 105 tonight, so the Horizon Road/105 route might the way to do it in the morning. Before they softened slightly the snow on the Lady and M1 was hard, but grippy, the M1 esp would be a blast with short radius skis with sharp edges. East Lady came good in the afternoon.

Terrain Park has several new rails added, giving a technical line for advanced riders and a more mellow line with the wide boxes, then a sizable kicker, before a new long wide rail.

Snow conditions will evolve with snow showers and sunshine through the day, moving about and exploring different options is likely to be rewarded. Snow showers have been more organised this evening since closing time, hopefully some more fresh for Sunday morning still to come tonight.

Pix from the Slopes for the 2012 Season
CairnGorm Mountain

Glencoe

Nevis Range

The Lecht

Glenshee

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