The AC Scottish winter climbing meet was again held in the Corran Bunkhouse over the weekend 5-7th February 2016.
This ever popular meet was attended by 23 members, aspirants and guests who enjoyed the excellent facilities of the bunkhouse (which is really more of a simple self-catering hotel, with en suite rooms at tremendous value), and the proximity to the major climbing areas of Glen Coe and Ben Nevis. Unlike last year, unfortunately the weather was not very cooperative. Saturday was forecast to start reasonable and then deteriorate, but the reasonable bit still presented challenges with strong gusty winds, varied visibility, and lots of new snow. Very Scottish, in fact. Nonetheless, all sallied forth to a variety of hills and climbs with successes on Tower Face of the Comb, Castle Ridge, South Gully and Ledge Route on the Ben, and Dorsal Arete in Glen Coe. Others battled with wind and deep snow on walks in the Grey Corries, on Ben Nevis, and in Ardnamurchan (via the convenient ferry), while one pair went ski touring in Glen Coe. We happily reassembled in the evening for meals in local pubs or self-cooked, with the newcomers to the Scottish winter game being particularly impressed by the … ahem, interesting … conditions. Sunday was a more relaxed day, with various walking objectives in mind, while one team went dry tooling at Ballachulish Bridge. Those staying up longer must have been blessed with brilliant conditions. I gather Monday had a splendid cloud inversion during which Golden Oldie on Aonach Mor was climbed.
We’ll be back again at the same venue next year, 24th-26th February, when I hope the weather will be more like it was immediately after (rather than during) this year’s meet. Book early to avoid disappointment.
By Roger Everett