pix from the slopes // cairngorm mountain
CairnGorm Mountain // Wednesday 16th April 2008
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A largely deserted but loaded Ciste Fairway contrasts with a busy West Wall Poma.

Heading down the fenced run on the Fiacaill, the traverse out from the Cas Tow is basically wherever you want to go!

Top Station viewed from the Traverse/M1 split, the poles the only evidence of the snow fences below.

Skiers heading up the Fiacaill Ridge Poma early afternoon.

Ride anywhere in Coire Cas, looking over the Zig Zags to the M1 and Lady from FRP.

Coire Na Ciste Chairlift drive station.

Recently drifted snow on the moderate South East winds on the Laogh Mor Return.

Wow!! Coire Na Ciste from the boardwalk across the burn at the foot of the Laogh Mor Return.

Ciste Mid Station and OverYonder from far out the East Wall beyond No2 Gully.

The fenced traverse across the East Wall leads into an absolutely loaded Coire Laogh Mor, variable snow hunt for the windblown pow!

The heavily traversed lower half of the West Wall contrasts spectacularly with the top half in the bright April Sun.

Wide, deep and about to get steep. No 2 Gully on the East Wall from high above the fenced Traverse, access from Ptarmigan Tow for more vertical.

Skier heads for the steeps on the East Wall. Check it's open before hitting the top of the gullies from the Ptarmigan Tow!

Blue sky and perfect machine packed powder on the Ptarmigan Traverse. Amazing conditions for learning.

Looking down the Ciste Ski Tow and Ciste Fairway. Total cover across the Top Basin.

Lone skier about to drop down the direct route onto the White Lady.

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Wow!! Mostly bright and sunny, at times the Sun beating down from a clear blue sky, but with a cooling SE breeze off the Plateau keeping the FL quite low and distributing windblown fresh to favoured areas.

Amongst those catching the fresh was Coire Cas which was offering perfect conditions, laying down some big turns on amazing snow. Also catching loose fresh was the Aonach Bowl, dropping in close to the WWP offering the best of the best. If you see a rock in the Aonach Bowl, don't be surprised if gets up and runs away - it's more likely a Ptarmigan than a rock!

Above mid-station level (2500ft) you can ski anywhere with superb riding on offer for all abilities. Off-piste surface conditions are variable, and where the best sport is will quite likely change day to day and through each day as was the case on Wednesday. Do take care on the steeper stuff, the end of the SAIS reports does not mean an end to avalanche risk - ask patrol for advice.

Skiable by all routes to the Cas Carpark and to the Ciste Carpark via the Aonach Ridge and Laogh Mor Return. Coire Laogh Mor has fantastic cover and provides for a 2000ft vertical drop from the Ptarmigan Tow. It's easy to overshoot the fence back to the Carpark such is the extent of coverage in the Coire, so if your not familiar with this route only do it in excellent visibility.

Photos by Winterhighland.
Pix from the Slopes for the 2008 Season
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