A late evening post from the Scottish Ski Club Hut on CairnGorm Mountain where the Winterhighland webcams have been repositioned to their Winter position, offering views up the White Lady and over the Funicular to the M1 Poma, plus the hut cam looking over the balcony which is fantastic in winter for gauging new snow falls.
Several parts of the weather station have been upgraded, this has allowed the sensors to be hard wired to the AWS console, instead of relying on a radio signal. The principle advantage of this is that the AWS records wind speeds much more frequently and the reception of data is less prone to radio intereference.
The SSC hut is relatively sheltered by the ‘Gorms standards, and the positioning of the anemometer is not a good indication of wind speeds on the mountain as a whole. However the location was chosen to get an indication of how wind affects the hollow at the foot of the White Lady and in future this will help assess how much less exposed this small part of the mountain is, how that affects snow lie and reliability of the lower White Lady and help in assessing the potential snow making may have to restore the reliability of the lower 1/4r of the White Lady which circumstantially seems to have suffered severely from the Funicular.
It is planned to install two more Automatic Weather Stations to further increase climate data from CairnGorm, one will be mid altitude on the lower slopes and the second mid-way up the middle slopes. These will give truer wind speeds for the middle and lower slopes respectively and provide more useful info for assessing conditions.
Finally for now, a third camera is operating in the SSC Hut, giving a view across the Fiacaill area of Coire Cas. Last year the cameras went back live for winter on 1st October after the power was switched off to the Ski Club hut during the early autumn for major repairs to the home road and culverts around the Kassbohrer garage – a couple of days later there was snow to be seen. Hopefully the first dusting will appear on the cams before long.
It’s dark, time to head off the hill.