Scottish Ski Conditions Update
Thanks to Gillian Parker for providing this Scottish ski conditions update: It's been the best start to the year for a few years with most of the Scottish ski centres being open from the New Year. The reality is that it hasn't been quite full opening, but not far from it. Resulting in arguably the best start to the Scottish ski season for some years and great news for all those booked on 'Ski Performance Scotland' courses.
Nevis Range has had good snow on the front of the mountain, giving varied conditions for off piste practice. The strong east and south easterly winds have meant the Back Bowls haven't filled in properly yet this year. The west facing gullies of 'Bold Rush' and 'Grotto Rush' have been skied, but they are in thin condition with the steepest sections near the bottom when you are totally committed. These lines are definitely for the very confident off piste skier.
Glencoe has had all lifts open, with great skiing on 'Etive Glades', 'Happy Valley' and also the plateau runs for beginners. 'Spring Run' is skiable as long as you keep you eyes open for obstacles. The 'Flypaper' has yet to form. They also have a beginners area, with artificial snow created by the "snow factory" by the road.
The Lecht has had the longest season of any of the resorts, sometimes thin but as usual they have managed the snow well. Glenshee has had the areas close to the road open, but are yet to get further over the back. Cairngorm Mountain seems to be focussing on the runs from the train and is gradually opening more routes down.
Returning to Nevis Range, we did have lovely cold powdery snow until tuesday when it got a bit warmer. Since then the snow has "set up firm" to use a phrase often used by the ski areas here, great for the climbers though. However the good news is there is plenty snow forecast next week, coming on a strong westerly wind which should give plenty of drifting. This should stick to the firm base well and given that there is cover over most of the mountain, and should make for some very good skiing. The time to bring out the good skis could be only a few days away. Just in time for our 'Ski Performance Scotland' course at Nevis Range on 22/23rd Jan. Being midweek should be pretty quiet too...