Spring is definitely King on CairnGorm Mountain in 2012. A bluebird day to start May with extensive terrain for all ability levels. Alan and Helen notched up their 31st consecutive month of sliding on the 'Gorm using the lifts!
An absolutely stunning early May evening meant even at 7pm tourers were still setting off for an evening ski after work. Taking advantage of long evenings & excellent cover mid and upper mountain.
Ride anywhere above about 2800-3000ft. Though there's been some inevitable thinning towards the bottom of the middle runs, where there was limited snow cover prior to last week, there is still very good cover on most of the length of the mid mountain trails. M1 via Horizon Road, then the 105 was the pick if the afternoon, it was getting heavier traffic and the sticky softening fresh snow from Monday was skied into the older snow giving nice quick spring snow.
Up top yesterdays fresh snow did get sticky in the afternoon, but with diurinal freeze/thaw cycles this week it should morph quickly into faster spring snow.
Coire Cas Tow now set up for loading at top of the Gunbarrel, if demand. Top level of the Cas Carpark was full, but no queues on the tows Tuesday.
The upper reaches of Coronation Wall and Cas Headwall were giving concern for avalanche risk after drifting yesterday and overnight on East winds, check with Patrol for the latest.
Below the Race Hut the M1 is getting rocky in the fenced narrows, Horizon Road onto the 105 is a better bet. Upper Gunbarrel can be skied, then cut onto 105. Top 2 legs of Zig Zags are complete back to the M1 Poma.
Snow on Carpark Run comes to an end at the bottom of the Sheiling Tow, the M2 is complete to the corner of the Daylodge Poma, but from there a walk down the Windy Ridge footpath is required. Funicular mid-stopping down later in the afternoon.