Mid-January saw the Northern Cairngorms and many other parts of Scotland plastered with a fresh deep layer of powder snow. This new snow had fallen on top of what was already an unusually good snow base, especially for so early in the season leading to epic condtions for those living local enough to be allowed to travel. Following particularly heavy snowfall in the preceding two days Saturday morning cleared into an idyllic crisp bluebird winter day with perfect amounts of snow, low wind and sub-zero temperatures.
All this fresh unconsolidated new snow resulted in a high avalanche risk on all aspects so skiing was aimed at easier safe slopes in the trees. Maintaining social distancing, club members congregated at the foot of Meall a Bhuachaille and Creagan Gorm, the prominent Corbetts which lie immediately above Loch Morlich in the Glenmore Forest. The ample snow cover allowed members to skin from the directly from the road in perfect underfoot conditions.
Some Club members picked an interesting route up through the Forest, while others headed up past Glenmore lodge to Ryvoan Pass from where a more direct approach to the summit of Meall a Bhuachaille is possible. In the once in a decade conditions rivalling tree skiing anywhere else in Europe, many club members were subsequently spotted skiing down through the steep tree lined slopes of Creag Louisgte towards An Lochan Uaine. The highlight for most was the South Easterly aspect of Creagan Gorm which provided some of the fluffiest powder snow they’d ever skied.