/ Rubbish winter

This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.
wee jamie 10 Jan 2019

...that's it really.

7
wee jamie 10 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

well, rubbish on the West anyway.

Allovesclimbin 10 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Early days yet  

1
The Lemming 10 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

I had frost on my car yesterday morning. Surely Kinder must be in nick by now?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xLspopiLGfg

2
Michael Gordon 10 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Rubbish in the east as well.

OwenM 10 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

The beast from the east came in March last year. Early days.

abr1966 10 Jan 2019
In reply to Allovesclimbin:

> Early days yet  

This!!

After 33 years of Scottish winters I never expect to climb anything much untill February!!

wee jamie 10 Jan 2019
In reply to abr1966:

Hmmm, I should know this too.  Doesn't stop me worrying though.  Just a bit concerned about the near zero build up in the gullies.  I'm waiting for good snow cover on some of the lower peaks of the West, and it just hasn't happened yet - crucial for my new painting ideas.  Last winter was great, but the year before was diabolical.  Please not again.

1
GHawksworth 10 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Today's climbing reports show otherwise! Plenty getting out in the Cairngorms and saying it's in.

18
Simonfarfaraway 10 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Yeah there's been some good days in the East for mixed climbing, but very sporadic and you are right no build up. Next week is looking a little more wintery...

abr1966 10 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Its definitely not as consistent as it used to be.....I don't think its just rosey memories on my part!

Mike-W-99 10 Jan 2019
In reply to GHawksworth:

> Today's climbing reports show otherwise! Plenty getting out in the Cairngorms and saying it's in.

Quite literally in for a day and melted, Brodie took some class photos though.

Says it all -  http://www.weathercast.co.uk/world-weather/weather-stations/obsid/3065.html

GHawksworth 10 Jan 2019
In reply to Mike-W-99:

aye! Can't quite make heads or tails of the forecast atm either. next couple of days looks ropey but with snow showers likely for the next week, I'm optimistic. A few sources contradict each other though! ~3C for a week or ~-3C depending where you look!

I think there were more ascents today than all of the 2016/17 "winter"

I was looking at about 4-5 posts, not just Brodie's and they all look awesome!

Post edited at 23:06
Billhook 11 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Keep Calm and Carry On.  

wee jamie 11 Jan 2019
In reply to Billhook:

Yes Bill, will do.  I'll sit tight and stop moaning

Michael Gordon 11 Jan 2019
In reply to GHawksworth:

> I think there were more ascents today than all of the 2016/17 "winter"> 

Anywhere outwith the Norries? I didn't bother looking since it was clearly going to be crap by the weekend.

DaveHK 11 Jan 2019
In reply to GHawksworth:

> Today's climbing reports show otherwise! Plenty getting out in the Cairngorms and saying it's in.

The reason people are complaining is that there is pretty much  zero build up so any thaw will bring us almost back to square one very quickly. Also, the temperatures and snowfall patterns mean that very little has been done outwith the Norries and high on the Ben.

The reality is that this is relatively normal. I don't keep detailed diaries like some do but I can remember many winters where it was like this at this time. Some went on to be good, others didn't.

Groundhog 11 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Item on radio 4 yesterday had a meteorologist saying that current conditions over north Asia were pointing at a better than average possibility of another "beast from the east" at the end of the month.

Also a colder than average winter as a whole.

Here's hoping. Though I doubt the sparrows will agree.

CurlyStevo 11 Jan 2019
In reply to abr1966:

going back how far? the last 10 years have been much better than the 10 years before I think.

 

MikeR 11 Jan 2019
In reply to Groundhog:

There's a good video here from the 8th Jan by the Met Office explaining what's going on in the atmosphere, and how it might affect the UK. Fast forward to 9 minutes in to where they start to talk about sudden stratospheric warming.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-3dyOjjRBts&feature=youtu.be&t=545

Basically it's saying that there is a braking effect being applied to the jet stream, meaning that from the last third of January there is an increased likelihood of winds coming from the north or east, bringing cold conditions to the UK. However, there are a number of other contributory factors that can affect this so there is still uncertainty whether we will see these northerlies or easterlies develop for the UK.

Welsh Kate 11 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-46835677

It's all gone to Europe - no doubt fed up with the continuing Brexit saga ;-)

Eric9Points 11 Jan 2019
In reply to abr1966:

> This!!

> After 33 years of Scottish winters I never expect to climb anything much untill February!!


You can get routes done in October if you're lucky.

Twenty years ago I always reckoned that winter generally arrived sometime around the Xmas holidays. There was generally a spell of cold snowy weather that closed roads and got us all excited.

Forty years ago we used to go ice climbing in the Galloways in early winter quite regularly. The rule of thumb was that if the puddles on the pavements in Ayr were frozen all the way to the bottom then the Black Gairies would be in condition.

Neither happen much now.

subtle 11 Jan 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

 

> Forty years ago we used to go ice climbing in the Galloways in early winter quite regularly. The rule of thumb was that if the puddles on the pavements in Ayr were frozen all the way to the bottom then the Black Gairies would be in condition.

Its due to the dire state of the roads in Ayr - puddles are much much deeper so hardly ever freeze to the bottom now.

 

Eric9Points 11 Jan 2019
In reply to subtle:

From what I've seen they hardly ever freeze on top now.

stevez 11 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Don’t panic. The effect of the Sudden Stratospheric Warming event that took place over the North Pole on Jan 1st is now starting to make its way into the troposphere. Expect cold and snow from end of Jan/beginning of Feb.

abr1966 11 Jan 2019
In reply to CurlyStevo:

> going back how far? the last 10 years have been much better than the 10 years before I think.

Back as far as my halcyon days of climbing....the 80's!

Groundhog 11 Jan 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

Similarly back in the 70's we would regularly get a spell around christmas when Kinder Downfall would be in condition. Our rule of thumb would be solid puddles in Stockport for a few days.

Although as subtle says the potholes are so much deeper now it would take a lot more to freeze them!

French Erick 11 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Only rubbish for those with no flexibility and enough faith (that'll be me).

Winter climbing will increasingly be more fickle as the years go by and the majority will be frustrated whilst those that can take days off at the correct time will get things done.

Check Helen Rennard, her tally of finished routes this season alone (without counting the failures) is better than what a few moaners on here do in a season.

3 highest assets for a successful winter climber:

1. life circumstances that allow true opportunism- tomorrow is good I'm going.

2. absolute determination- it looks grim but I'll give it a punt.

3. wide range of possible partners to maximize point 1, transport and bounce conditions tips of each other. Hi there, fancy NW this weekend?

Eric9Points 11 Jan 2019
In reply to French Erick:

It all depends on what you mean by rubbish.

What you are describing is having getting a lot done despite very few routes or venues being in condition at any point in time.

What others might describe as a good winter is one where lots of routes and venues are in condition for long periods of time.

As a matter of interest, where are you going this weekend? Or don't you want to say in case the two lines that are a bit white and frosty end up with a dozen parties queued up at the bottom ?????

1
Stuart the postie 11 Jan 2019
In reply to French Erick:

We couldn't get a route done anywhere, Thu, Fri, Sat, last week....that's rubbish!

This Sunday looks the same, cancelled going out today also. Looks more promising for next weekend, Euans good for 3 days. Will be in touch.

Stuart

 

mrphilipoldham 11 Jan 2019
In reply to Groundhog:

Kinder was in for two days in the week before Christmas last year (well, 2017), and again during the beast from the east.. so it still happens, even if it feels like it doesn’t. 

TobyA 11 Jan 2019
In reply to Stuart the postie:

Top of the Ben was in OK nick Stuart! Although Sunday morning we were so knackered after two days up down Ben Nevis, that we packed up and headed back to Englandshire, via a suprisingly nice bacon roll meal in Dumbarton McDonalds.

2
French Erick 11 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Aye Saturday turned out much better than I would have thought, but very localised TobyA

Postie, I'm sure next Sunday will have more going...Not mad keen to queue though.

Eric9points, I'm bouldering Sunday! As my previous post implied, I cannot be opportunistic (Sundays only) and I have lost faith so I'll concentrate on becoming a stronger /better rock climber...any winter will be bonus (that way I can keep discontent at bay). You?

TobyA 11 Jan 2019
In reply to French Erick:

Yeah, we got the distinct impression that simply nothing else was high enough. It sounded like some slightly ethically dubious ascent were being made on Friday in the Cairngorms though, but we met a team on Saturday who had left there and come over to the Ben after seeing the pictures I had put up on the Scottish winter conditions FB group.

wee jamie 11 Jan 2019
In reply to French Erick:

Well now Erick, you're absolutely correct - all those things add up to a good oportunistic winter climber.

I've lived in the Highlands and been winter climbing religiously for seventeen years now.  I've climbed a few graded routes this winter so far, but I'm after so much more.

I have particular needs for a Scottish winter however, and they're not just based around good mixed climbing conditions on the highest mountain crags.  I want to see beautiful curving snow aretes, gullies that hold their snow well into April and May, lower peaks of 600m+ with good snow cover and crispy crunchy neve etc etc.

I have a list of mountains to see, climb and paint under good snow cover, and they include the likes of Suilven, Ben Mor Coigach (Sgurr an Fhidhleir in particular), Quinag, Garbh Bheinn (Ardgour), Shelterstone Crag, Stac Pollaidh, Ladhar Bheinn, Liathach, An Teallach, the whole of the Cuillin... and the list goes on and on.  Good snow cover also has to coincide with some good weather preferably (otherwise I just paint the inside of a cloud).  It's my livelihood, so I have reason to worry.

 

Eric9Points 11 Jan 2019
In reply to French Erick:

> Aye Saturday turned out much better than I would have thought, but very localised TobyA

> Postie, I'm sure next Sunday will have more going...Not mad keen to queue though.

> Eric9points, I'm bouldering Sunday! As my previous post implied, I cannot be opportunistic (Sundays only) and I have lost faith so I'll concentrate on becoming a stronger /better rock climber...any winter will be bonus (that way I can keep discontent at bay). You?

I was all set to do some munros above loch Treig until I saw the forecast last night. If I hadn't largely Jacked in the climbing I'd be down in Northumberland bouldering like you. Either Kyloe in or Doveholes I'd imagine but at the moment I can't lift my left arm past my shoulder so even if I wanted to I wouldn't be bouldering. Instead I'll go for a run tomorrow. Maybe down the coast depending upon the weather.

Post edited at 21:14
k.shark 12 Jan 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

Galloways are usually fickle till end of February and never had to que on some very good routes especially Merrick, Black Gairy . still to see interstellar overdraft in good nick though.

TobyA 12 Jan 2019
In reply to abr1966:

> After 33 years of Scottish winters I never expect to climb anything much untill February!!

Really?

Loads got done this winter from the end of October to early December, but that doesn't seem very unusual.

I only lived in Scotland for 4 winters, but always got stuff done pre Xmas, and not by any means only in the Cairngorms. None of my friends group had cars so we relied on the bus from Glasgow and I did a number of great routes in the Southern Highlands before Xmas over those years from the bus. Following the reports ever since, winter climbing starting in October or November seems the norm.

 

DaveHK 12 Jan 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Pishing down on the top of Macdui this morning...

atthedropofahat 13 Jan 2019
In reply to abr1966:

I started ignoring the sirens calls for New Year Eve trips to winter climb. Only ever ended spending the time in hostels and cafes as it pissed it down.

French Erick 14 Jan 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

As it turned out it wasn't even dry enough for sporadic bouldering on my Sunday jaunt... 

Thankfully, I do a bit of paddling so if it is wet I go in a boat. I had planned a gentle solo paddle on the river Glass from Struy Bridge to the first power station a couple of km past Eilan Aigas.

Random howling showers and a relatively high water level made it  harder work...it was sunny at times too!

It has been a very long autumn!!

Eric9Points 14 Jan 2019
In reply to French Erick:

 

 

> It has been a very long autumn!!

 

Yes but don't despair. It feels like spring is on its way in Edinburgh today.

Captain Solo 14 Jan 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

An inch or two of fresh powder in The Cairngorms today if anyone's interested, more on the way later this week.

hwackerhage 14 Jan 2019
In reply to Welsh Kate:

Yup, tons of snow in Munich and in the Eastern Alps. For Sölden, Austria, they are currently reporting 408 cm on the mountain: https://www.bergfex.at/soelden/schneebericht/ Great Nordic skiing and ski touring but difficult to climb because it is hard to get close to the mountain with metres of avalanchy snow in-between any climber and the ice or rock!

wee jamie 21 Feb 2019
In reply to hwackerhage:

Felt like resurrecting an old thread, and a bit more of a moan moan moan. 

There'd better be a return to snowy conditions this season as I have commissions to paint Zero Gully and Shelterstone Crag and no photos, sketches or experiences to work from.  Grumph.

2
Tim Davies 21 Feb 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

When was it last this poor? I remember early March 1997 as having no snow at all and seeing a guy in shorts on Ben Starav. 

wee jamie 21 Feb 2019
In reply to Tim Davies:

I don't have my old diaries to hand and can't remember.  All I know about 1997 was it was the first time I climbed An Teallach.

jethro kiernan 21 Feb 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

They could do with a lick of paint

Misha 22 Feb 2019
In reply to Tim Davies:

Surely it was last this poor two years ago. People were saying then that it was the worst in a generation. It didn’t get as warm as it is now but it was still consistently warm with only short cold spells. Possibly worse than this season as this year it did at least get reasonably cold and snowy for a few weeks.

1
DaveHK 22 Feb 2019
In reply to Misha:

Two years ago wasn't epic but it wasn't a disaster either. I did something like 10 routes between November and March.

Post edited at 07:12
mike123 22 Feb 2019
In reply to DaveHK:

before looking at ukc this morning I was looking around at the scottish ski centre webcams :

https://www.nevisrange.co.uk/ski-board/the-mountain/webcams/

looks like June on anoach mor 

Post edited at 07:27
Simon Caldwell 22 Feb 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

I've got some photos of Shelterstone Crag from last weekend, but it was already in summer condition with just a ribbon of snow up the bounding gullies

planetmarshall 22 Feb 2019
In reply to Misha:

> Surely it was last this poor two years ago. People were saying then that it was the worst in a generation.

Not as bad as the 2013/14 season, in which there were only 71 climbs logged on Ben Nevis above Grade IV, compared to over 400 the preceding and successive seasons. Not a single ascent of Point Five was logged in that entire season.

Post edited at 16:27
Exile 22 Feb 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

Ho Jamie

As one of my 'not winter climbing' activities is looking at pictures / photos of winter routes, is your painting online anywhere?

BarneyLoosemore 22 Feb 2019
In reply to planetmarshall:

Hardly comparable surely? 2013/14 was notable because of the exceptional amount of snowfall, not exceptional lack of it (like 2016/17 and this season). I hadn't started climbing that season so I can't speak from experience, but I'd imagine the lack of notable ascents was largely due to hazardous avalanche conditions and the prevalence of stormy weather, alongside technical routes/gullies banking out. I'd take too much snow over not enough any day of the week, though.

Post edited at 17:29
planetmarshall 22 Feb 2019
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

> Hardly comparable surely? 2013/14 was notable because of the exceptional amount of snowfall, not exceptional lack of it (like 2016/17 and this season).

Still a poor Winter for climbing, regardless of the reason for it.

3
Misha 22 Feb 2019
In reply to planetmarshall:

Was that the really stormy year? I imagine there was stuff to do elsewhere, eg the north west. Too much winter is generally better than not enough...

Mark Bannan 26 Feb 2019
In reply to mike123:

> looks like June on anoach mor 

Looks more like September to me!

Pkrynicki1984 26 Feb 2019
In reply to wee jamie:

I've some good pictures of Ben Mor Coigach in the snow if your interested.

mike barnard 26 Feb 2019
In reply to Misha:

Yes that was the really stormy year. It seemed to be constant storms from Jan-March and I think I didn't do a single route in that time! Possibly OK for those free mid-week but the weekends were appalling. At least you could get out in other seasons. I still consider it the worst winter since I started climbing.

1
wee jamie 26 Feb 2019
In reply to Pkrynicki1984:

YES I AM!!  Always like to see photos of snowy mountains.  Message me at mountainportraits@hotmail.com 

In reply to Exile, yes I have my website www.jamiehageman.com for a nosey at some of my work


This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.