I know that some reference has been made on here to the amount of rainfall we're having and its relationship to a great winter climbing season.
I wondered if anyone has done any correlations, over a period of time, between high average rainfall & what might be called a 'good' winter season (i.e excellent snow - but particularly ice - conditions)?
In reply to Greenbanks:
One thing for sure is that if the ground freezes when it's dry its often not great for mixed as the turf isn't bonded as well and is sort of granular.
Certainly the wetter its been the more seepage there will be, so IF it gets cold enough potentially more ice routes that will be in. I think the chances of a really hard winter are so low in the UK now a days that its probably hard to make any statistical correlation.
Average rainfall will tell you very little on it's own. Did it just rain when it was warm, or did most of the precipitation fall as snow high up? Obviously precipitation is essential at some stage for there to be ice - but the timing and intensity is probably more important than monthly or seasonal averages. In short, the total amount of moisture UK mountains get is not the limiting factor in ice formation! Temperature is obviously much more important. But again, averages may conceal important details.
A winter of high average rainfall could mean mostly wading around in powder, or climbing wet rock... or possibly good conditions!
If you wanted to investigate this it is easy to find historical weather data (see link below) - but to test the correlation it might be difficult to reliably determine when 'good conditions' occurred...