Cairngorm Mt snow gate closure

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 facet 22 Dec 2020

Just to let local folk know that Cairngorm mt are closing as we enter tier 4, but also they are closing the snow gates at the hay field. (It's just if local folk don't see the news on this). 

 Myr 22 Dec 2020
In reply to facet:

Interesting - isn't this a public road that Cairngorm Mountain have responsibility for looking after?

 MJAngry 22 Dec 2020
In reply to Myr:

Since when did cairngorm observe legalities. 

 facet 22 Dec 2020
In reply to Myr:

I'm not sure, I thought it was a public road.. but don't know the legality. The video says something about by keeping it closed there won't be any issues with access if mt rescue need to get through.. which doesn't make any sense. If they don't plough/blow it then mt rescue wouldn't get through if there's been much snow. I wonder if they just can't afford, or have enough staff to keep the road open if the actual mt (facilities) are closed. 

 Michael Gordon 22 Dec 2020
In reply to facet:

Does this mean it's closed from 5pm (or thereabouts) Christmas Day?

 OwenM 22 Dec 2020
In reply to facet:

I think it's un-adopted i.e. it's a public road but the council are under no obligation to maintain or clear it. As it only goes to Cairngorm Mountain it's their responsibility. 

 Simon Yearsley 23 Dec 2020
In reply to facet: the video and statement on the website makes it pretty clear what they are doing and why.  Re the road closure, as you can see from the statement, they are currently still consulting with Highland Council and Police Scotland on this.  https://www.cairngormmountain.co.uk/cmsl-closure-statement/?fbclid=IwAR1t_MO0Xhu3BfaT-v0mueFSWv9eKKR2FZBZZbicZeYOjvhsnxq9KpYg374

In reply to Simon Yearsley:

So if they will maintain skeleton staff there, and not maintain the road, how will their staff get to work?

Either the staff walk, or they drive up and that requires maintaining the road.

It's bullshit. They don't own the mountain, despite what they think.

 Andy Johnson 23 Dec 2020
In reply to nickinscottishmountains:

> It's bullshit. They don't own the mountain, despite what they think.

The idea that anyone/thing can "own" a mountain is absurd.

In reply to Andy Johnson:

Exactly.

They dislike the climbing community as we don't pay them so they will do anything to restrict the climbing community.

 Doug 23 Dec 2020
In reply to nickinscottishmountains:

they have a long history of mismanagement of that road. My favourite memory is of a day back in the 1980s when we arrived to find the snowgates just above the hayfield closed. We were planning on going ski touring anyway so just skinned past the snowgates & up the snow covered road, much to the astonshent of the policeman 'guarding' the gates.  An hour or so later we stopped in the lee of the Shieling for a drink & were surprised to hear some voices inside. A moment later a couple of folk came out to chat - seems that many of the staff had driven up before the gates had been shut & they were wondering where all their customers were.

In reply to Andy Johnson:

> The idea that anyone/thing can "own" a mountain is absurd.

It's perfectly reasonable, though, that if you build a road at your cost on land where you have permission to do so that you own that.

Can I walk through your lounge?

In reply to Neil Williams:

It is a public road

 Doug 23 Dec 2020
In reply to Neil Williams:

it wasn't the chairlift company that built the road

In reply to nickinscottishmountains:

An unadopted public road isn't a concept I've heard of elsewhere, to be fair.

In reply to facet:

The road should never have been built in the first place. It was, though, built for skiers. Climbers and walkers should not be complaining; just get up an hour earlier, walk up and enjoy quieter hills and climbs.

In reply to Robert Durran:

It is a public road. If they can get their staff up there, they need an open road to do it: they clearly can keep the road open.

 tehmarks 23 Dec 2020
In reply to Neil Williams:

Oddly, I walked up a little lane that was signed 'unadopted' on the road sign just the other day. First time in 31 years I'd ever heard of the phrase, didn't have a clue what it meant. And as if by magic, this appears on UKC a few days later.

 ScraggyGoat 23 Dec 2020
In reply to nickinscottishmountains:

Cairngorm mountain has virtually got to the point they don't want visitors, as its become a big white-elephant/political hot potato.  I wonder who actually signed-off on the funicular (wink!).

So facing very little revenue, closing the road makes perfect sense................'nothing to see hear, move along please', and hope no one notices another non-operational season for the vast sums of tax payers cash the whole scheme has had.

If any ones Aviemore based it might be worth the odd 'look see' every now and again; just to see what they are actually upto while they have closed the road..............I'm one of life's eternal suspicious cynics, but as soon as any big landowner moves to hamper public access through an apparently reasonable request, I automatically suspect they might be about to do, or get away with, something unreasonable away from prying eyes (and very often I'm right!).

The bigger question is should the vaccine enable widespread travel before the end of the ski season, would Cairngorm Mountain actually try to make anything of it...............

Post edited at 16:04
In reply to ScraggyGoat:

I think they should finally admit defeat and remove the funicular, runs, pylons etc. It swallows endless public money better spent elsewhere and let's be honest, the skiing there just isn't worth it.

 lpretro1 24 Dec 2020
In reply to Neil Williams:

It is common - I live on one. The Council have no obligation to maintain the road. Any maintenance needed is down to the owners of the road - in our case a charity run country park and a building developer.

If you want to go climbing/walking then just accept it is the 'old-fashioned' long walk in and enjoy the scenery...it will keep the crowds away anyway!

Post edited at 14:28
In reply to lpretro1:

Is it actually a public road, though, or one that, theoretically, the co-owners (residents) could close, e.g. by putting a gate at the end?

In reply to Andy Johnson:

> The idea that anyone/thing can "own" a mountain is absurd.

I find the idea of any land ownership absurd. How can one "own" a bit of the earth's surface. It's bollocks.

In reply to nickinscottishmountains:

> It is a public road. If they can get their staff up there, they need an open road to do it: they clearly can keep the road open.

Maybe they just do enough to get beefy 4WD vehicles with snow chains up.

 ScraggyGoat 24 Dec 2020

I wonder if they have lawful authority to close the road, assuming it is a public highway......and given how much tax payers money has been spent it should be.

To have lawful authority they would need either a traffic restriction order, or more likely a Local Authority traffic order. Or potentially have been instructed by the Police.

They could close the gates under a 'reasonable excuse' clause (and be prepared to argue it in court if required) if it was getting blocked or dangerous do to snow etc, but if not the reasonable excuse wouldn't hold.

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1984/54/section/129

2)A person who, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, places or deposits anything in a road so as to obstruct the passage of, or to endanger, road users commits an offence.

So have they gone through due process, maybe a challenge for someone to find out if they get bored.

 timjones 24 Dec 2020
In reply to nickinscottishmountains:

> Exactly.

> They dislike the climbing community as we don't pay them so they will do anything to restrict the climbing community.

Why be so miserable, pull on your boots, walk in and enjoy the fact that it will be a lot quieter than usual up there.

In reply to Robert Durran:

> I find the idea of any land ownership absurd. How can one "own" a bit of the earth's surface. It's bollocks.

Can I walk through your living room whenever I feel like?

If so, why's that different?

In reply to Neil Williams:

> Can I walk through your living room whenever I feel like?

> If so, why's that different?

I would like the state to "own" all the land and then lease it out long term to people with appropriate conditions. It might not actually feel very different to what we have now, but gets round the absurdity of private land ownership.

 Doug 24 Dec 2020
In reply to Robert Durran:

it is effectively owned by the state at themoment - HIE is a state agency

In reply to Robert Durran:

> I would like the state to "own" all the land and then lease it out long term to people with appropriate conditions. It might not actually feel very different to what we have now, but gets round the absurdity of private land ownership.

Is that not sort of what it does anyway?  Freehold is de-facto an indefinite lease with very simple contract terms - it can have conditions (deeds of covenant) and it can be compulsory purchased.

What, out of interest, would you change about it specifically, in terms of what conditions you would impose?

Post edited at 17:46
In reply to Neil Williams:

> Is that not sort of what it does anyway?  Freehold is de-facto an indefinite lease with very simple contract terms - it can have conditions (deeds of covenant) and it can be compulsory purchased.

Fair enough. That is reassuring. Maybe it is just the use of the word "own" I don't like.

In reply to facet:

There is a good article about the legality of the road closure here: 

HIE and Cairngorm Mountain Scotland Ltd - unaccountable and out of control - parkswatchscotland

Apologies I cannot seem to post the clickable link but if you throw the above into a search engine I am sure you will get there.

Post edited at 15:00
 Doug 31 Dec 2020
In reply to Doug:

Cheers Doug

 ScraggyGoat 31 Dec 2020
In reply to Doug:

Nothing to see here, move along please.........

....oh look a Private Eye article screen grabbed within the above Parkwatch link!

and this one is worth a read too:

"Claims that the funicular railway is reliant on public money are totally absurd and without foundation”   

(Fergus Ewing MSP, 21 Dec 2000).

http://parkswatchscotland.co.uk/2018/11/05/a-scottish-fairy-tale-bank-of-scotland-fergus-ewing-and-the-funicular-railway/

Post edited at 15:56
 Forester3 31 Dec 2020
 French Erick 03 Jan 2021
In reply to facet:

Are they still closed?

edit: that’s the latest I can find and it’s it been updated. https://www.cairngormmountain.co.uk/weather-webcams/mountain-report/

Post edited at 10:13
 daWalt 03 Jan 2021
In reply to Doug:

ah parkswatch - where would we be without their emotive sub-tabloid ranting.

you'd be well advised not to take your legal advice from some stuff you read on "the internet" (ahem, cough!... irony check?; check!; carry on...)

road legislation is a top example of something that ostensibly should be straightforward but, just isn't. ownership of the road, the land it sits on, legal rights for its use, rights of public use, maintenance, and adoption are all aspects that can be blended in a myriad of cocktails that leave "it's a public road" as the desperate cry of the terminally bewildered.

if you've got a genuine desire to follow this up, I'd suggest taking this up with your local councilor. they should at least be able to help clarify the local authority's (and possibly public) position.

at least you're within 5iron distance, and have a better chance of getting out when it's nice than I have. hope you manage to make the most of this winter.

 French Erick 05 Jan 2021
In reply to daWalt:

Still closed. My friend and I skinned from the hayfield to Lurcher’s, did a route and came back all just under 11 hours. A great day was had and we were never bothered by crowds! 😉

In reply to French Erick:

Did you ski in climbing boots?

Stuart

 French Erick 06 Jan 2021
In reply to Stuart the postie:

No, climbing boots in the bag and changed footwear when necessary. 
 

you cannot ski down in mountain boots with a heavy sack and crusty/changing snow! At best you travel fast upright IMHO!

 DaveHK 06 Jan 2021
In reply to French Erick:

>  A great day was had and we were never bothered by crowds! 😉

This is an understatement, we never saw another soul all day, how often does that happen up there?

 Doug 06 Jan 2021
In reply to French Erick:

> you cannot ski down in mountain boots with a heavy sack and crusty/changing snow!

Well you can, but it tends to involve either a lot of falls or kick turns, and isn't pretty to watch

 French Erick 10 Jan 2021
In reply to Doug:

Precisely Doug: what you described isn’t skiing but travelling on skis. A distinction I keenly want to stress. Plenty people move on skis, a very significant majority of them will also be skiing.

sometimes even the most skilful of skiers isn’t skiing but moving on skis!!!


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