Wet start for me and Paul Smith this morning. The rain soon turned to heavy snow above 500m, but thankfully the forecasted wind didn't materialize.
A careful approach to Central Buttress on Stob Coire Nan Lochan was needed in waist deep snow, I was relieved to reach the foot of our intended route Central Grooves VII,7***
I could barely look up the first pitch with so much fresh snow and sluff coming down, but I battled on up the first pitch. Clearing cracks was almost impossible at times as they refilled instantly with a constant stream of sluff.
After bringing up Paul, the snow had eased a little, making it that little bit more bearable.
Paul was happy for me to do all the pitches, so off I went up the excellent sustained but well protected 2nd pitch. Pitch 3 had the most awkward move at the start, having to mantle onto a small shelf and reach high for a small crack which allowed you to stand up.It probably was still easier than the previous 2 pitches at about VI,7 perhaps some good ice or neve makes the move a little easier.
Pitch 4 was a easy romp to the top.
I was a bit concerned about descending Broad Gully with so much fresh snow about, but fortunately there was a guided team (guinea pigs) testing it out in front of us. Awesome bum slide back to our sacks.
Only one photo today.
Top day out.