pix from the slopes // cairngorm mountain
CairnGorm Mountain // Friday 2nd January 2009
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Dismounting the Ciste Tow.

Twilight glow above pockets of inversion layer mist illuminate the horizon beyond the Ptarmigan Restaurant.

Ciste T-bar doing it's thing as the twilight fades into night on the 'Gorm.

Coire cas by moonlight, the wonders of technology belie the true light. Gunbarrel is like a luge run, just narrower and more solid!

A truer indication of the light as skiers and sight-seers disembark the Funicular at the Base Station

The faintest of glows from the horizon illuminates a long exposure night shot on Loch Morlich.

Skiers on the Ciste Fairway, about 2 machine widths, dusting of fresh snow on a solid hardpacked base.

Sledge Park is back in business and was very busy on Friday. Get up earlier in the day to get sledging as it was fully booked for the day by mid-afternoon.

Looking over the Ptarmigan Bowl, where the conditions have improved with the fresh snow, but the base is narrow and hard packed.

View back up the Ciste Fairway to the Top Station and Ptarmigan Bowl. Stick to where there's a base, only a cosmetic dusting off it.

Looking up Coire Na Ciste. A promising base exists in key areas if we get snow following on from this freeze. Absolutely bomb proof snow.

The view from the Ptarmigan Bar to Loch Morlich with a foggy Strathspey beyond. Very cold in the Strath all day.

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A dusting of fresh snow on New Year's Day and overnight freshened up the surfaces on the complete runs on CairnGorm.

As a result of the dusting of fresh Coire Cas re-opened but unless you have good technique and perfect edges it's advisable to stay up top, the Traverse and Cas give a pleasant enough run, but the infamous Coire Cas Gunbarrel is living up to it's worst horror stories just now! It's simply brutal and would give a luge track anywhere a run for it's money!

The Top Basin is better the base though hard packed is not as icy and polished as the Gunbarrel, though some icy patches will develop through the day as some areas get a bit scrapped. Ptarmigan Bowl also improving, but the Ciste Bowl remains incomplete so use the Fairway for the Ciste Tow.

A partial and on several runs promising base remains on other mid-mountain runs, the ground is frozen solid at all levels as well. An ideal set-up for fresh snow to fall on if snow comes straight in after the freeze without the cold spell ending.

Sledge Park has re-opened but was very busy on Friday, as some holiday makers will be heading home on Saturday it may be less busy. Only short queues on the Top Basin Tows, often ski on to the Ciste.

If you have been out on the slopes please send your photos to pix2009@winterhighland.info .
Pix from the Slopes for the 2009 Season
CairnGorm Mountain

Yad Moss

Glenshee

Southern Cairngorms

Nevis Range

The Lecht

Glencoe

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