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pix from the slopes // cairngorm mountain
CairnGorm Mountain // Tuesday 8th February 2011
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Upper Cas great turns on and off the groomers, wind packed powder in the boulderfield.

Lower slopes have been catching snow drifting in through the day.

Pondering the options at the top of the Cas T-bar. Fiacaill was catching windblown fresh, left the Cas very quiet.

Cranking it up on the White Lady, superb machine packed powder corduroy early, but more some icy patches developed later.

Looking up the Coire Cas Gunbarrel, 105 parallel to it was beautiful and virtually unused.

M2 was the run of the day when it opened in the afternoon.

Skiers on the upper reaches of the White Lady, loose windblown snow this route in.

Hazy sunshine, but the veil of high cloud proved persistent.

Top Basin is in great conditions with machine packed powder surfaces on a firm base.

A complete line exists back to the Ciste via the Aonach Ridge, staying just below the crest of the ridge to above end of Link Road.

Ciste Bowl was offering 'hero' conditions!

Ciste Gully wide and deep, but alas sporting a blowhole from the big rain last week! WW unstable!

Loch Morlich from the top of the M1 Poma. Top of Traverse is very icy - go carefully here.

Winch cat on the prowl up the Home Road.

White Lady and M1 Race Track from the Carpark Run. Sheiling Gully breakable crust.

Ski Patrol fishing expedition on Burnside, good cover to top Daylodge Bridge - bit scratchy below.

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Drifting into the tunnel mouth delayed opening on Tuesday morning and the wind was picking up from the South late in the day, increasing drifting of higher and plateau areas into the snowsports area.

Only the Funicular is available for uplift from the Daylodge for Wednesday, this could delay opening and with strong gusty winds due check the latest in the morning if possible.

The new snow over the past few days has greatly freshened up the runs for the most part and the drifting has helped focus the snow into the principle runs and snowfields. The two picks of the day by afternoon were Coire Cas which had fantastic groomed dry loose snow on a firm base on the pisted area, while skiers left of the T-bar in the boulder field there was beautiful windpacked snow that was just right for cranking up some big carves on. Fiacaill catching fresh all day.

The second pick of the afternoon was the M2, beautiful loose dry snow corduroy. The White Lady, M1 and M1 RaceTrack are good for advanced riders, though the surface conditions were getting more mixed up later due to a combination of drifting and skier traffic.

Good top to Daylodge riding is on offer once more with an improved base and decent surface conditions on the Carpark Run, though best to exit at the top Daylodge Bridge.

Some icy patches developed in heavy traffic areas later in the day, but the main area to watch out for is in the vicinity of the Top Station round to the Traverse/M1 split which isn't so much glacial as turning blue!! Be careful and go slowly here, but it quickly improves!

Overnight might see some fresh as well as further drifting before rising temps dampen down the drifting. Fresh snow will soften up on Wednesday, deeper fresh might get slightly sticky so the best sport likely to be where there was a thinner cover of fresh on the firm base as the base becomes a bit looser.
Pix from the Slopes for the 2011 Season
CairnGorm Mountain

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