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pix from the slopes // cairngorm mountain
CairnGorm Mountain // Thursday 7th February 2019
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On the 105 which is complete straight to the M1 loading area for those who wish to avoid the Zig Zags,

M1 Poma making it's season debut on Thursday. Might be a few days before it goes again given the forecast wind though!

M1 RaceTrack is full width to the 105 crossover, but a bit narrow approaching the base of the Poma if you stay on it.

Heading onto the Cas from the Traverse.

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Until today the uplift has been restricted to the snow making area on the lower slopes where the Carpark Runs are in the best condition they've been since 2010 (natural snow) and 2013 when they also benefited from considerable snow making with the arrival of 4 T40s on Test before Natural Retreats came on the scene!

The big news on Thursday was the M1 Poma making it's season debut, it's been an awful long time getting to something resembling winter in the Scottish mountains this year, but the South Easterly storms mid-week really helped things in the right direction on CairnGorm. Lots of snow blown off the Plateau into the snowsports area.

The Traverse, 105 or Cas and Zig Zags route to the M1 drive is groomed, great surface conditions but quite narrow on the mid Cas. M1 Race Track is 4 machines wide to the crossover and giving lovely carves for more experienced riders. On Thursday a short walk was required to the M1, but that could well change by the time the winds start to moderate on Sunday!

Piste crews were working on various areas of the mountain. The new rail fencing on the M2 has transformed the snow trapping as well as snow retention here in big Southerly storms and while previously the snow may have blown straight through, this time it stuck both on the M2 and the Daylodge Poma. Machines were working on both the DLP and WWP uptracks.

Now it is all eyes on the weather. Will Storm Erik deliver and make the season or break ski area operators hearts as we approach February half term. A bit more snow sticking in the right places, with a consolidation cycle, then fresh on top could have all available uplift open next week. On the other hand many many hours of heavy rain and high winds could be a considerable set back and as the storm already starts to make itself felt we don't know which way this is going to go!
Pix from the Slopes for the 2019 Season
Glencoe

CairnGorm Mountain

Glenshee

Nevis Range

The Lecht

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