UPDATE July 2015: Ken and Hannah are now running Scottish walking, mountaineering and climbing courses for West Coast Mountain Guides.
I think we were all lulled into a false sense that Spring was arriving after the great weather and conditions of last week. Cue overnight snow down to 300m! So that’s what greeted Fransisca and I as we made our way up the Allt a’ Mhuilinn. Fransisca has Mounts Elbrus and Vinson on the cards for later this year, and felt that a few days up in Scotland would be good preparation, and with a wintery forecast for the rest of the week, I’d agree.
We made our way up Ledge Route, which with the fresh snow, meant blazing a trail, which I think adds to the quality of the day. With a bit of coaching, Fransisca quickly got to grips with using crampons and an ice axe, and gained plenty of confidence as we approached the summit of Carn Dearg. We then continued to the summit of Ben Nevis, before making a descent, largely by way of a brilliant bumslide down No.4 Gully and Coire na Ciste, made all the more better by the fresh snow. Watch out for the man-eating glide cracks at the top of No.4 Gully! Hadrians, Indicator RH, Point 5, Italian RH, Orion Direct and 2 Step Corner all reported to be in great nick.