/ Isle of Arran this Saturday anyone?

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baileyswalk - on 28 Mar 2013
I'm going to be on Arran this weekend but don't know anyone up for a climb down there. Was thinking about checking the gully lines on Beinn Nuis, looks pretty scoured from the webcam. If that doesn't work out I hear they have free 24 hour burger vans at the moment!
mark turnbull - on 28 Mar 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:
Really free burger vans.
baileyswalk - on 28 Mar 2013
In reply to mark turnbull:

Several in the heart of every population centre, if you are lucky enough to be trapped in by the snow they are delivering them to your door whether you want them or not. Must be rowdy at chucking out time in Brodick!
Pids - on 28 Mar 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:
> (In reply to mark turnbull)
>
> Must be rowdy at chucking out time in Brodick!

It can have it's moments!
Skinny Kin - on 29 Mar 2013
In reply to mark turnbull:
They try to get rid of all the horse burgers!
baileyswalk - on 29 Mar 2013
In reply to Skinny Kin:

Haha, I think you may be right - the bastards!
Snoweider - on 29 Mar 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:
You might find the burger vans are getting stood down at the moment as power is being restored. We are still on gennies here but word is the switch to grid will happen today. I hope so as at the moment even those of us with genny power are having to avoid using ovens, washing machines etc as it trips the generators.

I've not had a chance to get in to the hills yet as have been a bit tied up with all this but word is that conditions are difficult, drifts massive.
I've seen several avalanche tracks above the string where collapsing cornices have triggered the slopes below.

Also be aware that mobile signal is even worse than usual due to damaged masts so you'll be on your own up there.
Mark Torrance on 29 Mar 2013
I'm going to freeload on this thread:

I'm there next week with both kids and mother (who is just shy of 80). I'd welcome suggestions for things to do (from Lochranza). Short walks with definite objectives that are unlikely to be burried under a snowdrift. That sort of thing.

Also can someone give me a link to the webcam? Quick googling doesn't give anything apart from one pointing at the ferry terminal.
Snoweider - on 29 Mar 2013
In reply to Mark Torrance:
The webcam is here: http://arranproperty.co.uk/arran-webcam/

All roads open, although there are lots of big trucks and they are narrow in places with all the snow. East coast of the island at sea level has no snow left, drifts start between Sliddery and North Sannox via the west.

From Lochranza there is a coastal walk around the newton shore which is easy enough until you get to An scriodan where the oulders are. This should be more or less snow free by now I'd think.
Snoweider - on 29 Mar 2013
In reply to Snoweider:
*Boulders
baileyswalk - on 29 Mar 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:

Just been on a wee recce with the bino's. Beinn Nuis gullys look OK, but the buttresses are black. Pinnacle gully in the punch bowl is holding plenty of snow but what state it's in, who knonws, middle difficulty is showing a bit of rock. Not as much ice forming in the back of the corrie as expected but I could see a bit. Stacach ridge is plastered, cornices clearly visible between the last stach and Goat Fell summit, ground underneath the Stach's looks very sketchy, but further down on Goat Fells east ridge the ground is well scoured and Islands of safety look available. If wanting to get on Goat Fell tourist route and back would be advisable. Will go for a deek about tomorrow and see what's what.
gilliesp on 29 Mar 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:
I was hoping to do Pinnacle Gully myself tomorrow, or with partner, Outrider, the grade II icefall along right from it. Also under consideration are Green Gully and West Stone Shoot on either side of Cir Mhor. However if there is substantial approach wading to do that would give me pause for second thoughts...

Do you know if buses to north of island are runing to schedule?
baileyswalk - on 29 Mar 2013
In reply to gilliesp:
> (In reply to baileyswalk)

> Do you know if buses to north of island are runing to schedule?

They should be but can't say for certain, will prob go and have a look at those routes myself, mibbe see you up there :]
Stuart the postie - on 29 Mar 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:

I spoke with a postie on Arran, he says buses running ok, certainly as far as Sannox.

Stuart
baileyswalk - on 30 Mar 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:

Tried to do outrider in the punch bowl but the ice was a mere streak over the granite with at best tenuous placements, ended up on the turf and heather to the left of it over most of the ascent, pinnacle gully would have been a slog through sugary snow. Once on to the corrie lip things improved greatly, plenty of neve and a few patches of wind slab kicking about. Went on to do the stacach ridge which was good fun but very banked out with sugary snow, the Stacach gully would probably be OK. Went on to Goat Fell and descended the tourist track to the pub! The trainer brigade were in full force on Goat Fell, even one guy in suede slip-on's with turned up jeans and no socks - good effort. I will post a link to some pics on when I get the time but basically I would say climbing conditions are not great but for walking it's magic.
buzby - on 30 Mar 2013
In reply to baileyswalk: been working over there most of this week fixing the wrecked telephone cables, as said above all the main roads are open but some side roads are difficult to pass.
due to the way the snow fell there is massive drifting so some areas have drifts several feet deep right next to ground with no snow at all.
i would have though any ridges would be fairly clear.
been walking over fields all week carrying ladders and tools in thigh deep snow and im mighty pissed off with it now. still i suppose its good training i could crack wallnuts with my arse cheeks now due to the muscle im building.
Snoweider - on 30 Mar 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:
Glad you had a good day. It was the man in shorts on the summit that surprised me!!
Just been sent this photo of a massive avalanche path in Glen Catacol. The person who took it reckons it was triggered by a cornice collapse that funneled in to a big ol gully. https://twitter.com/jackieonarran/status/318090417151283200/photo/1
Snoweider - on 30 Mar 2013
In reply to buzby:
Thanks for your hard work by the way. Hope your cheeks recover. The island is genuinely grateful to all of you guys.
baileyswalk - on 31 Mar 2013
In reply to Snoweider:

> Glad you had a good day.

Cheers, it was nice to bump into you. Hope you get your winter climb soon!
gilliesp on 31 Mar 2013
In reply to baileyswalk: I followed your prints towards Outrider. I had caught later boat. Dug pit at foot of Pinnacle Gully. Two feet of soft snow on old neve. Bad! Checked gully bed and it was mainly scoured and icy in places. Had a good ascent mainly on neve. As I started well down I managed to squeeze 200 metres according to altimeter. Wonderful walk over to Mullach Buidhe and down to Corrie where at bus stop a taxi stopped to give me a free lift to Ferry as he was on a pick up at the Coop anyway. That act of kindness was a nice touch to a splendid day.
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buzby - on 31 Mar 2013
In reply to Snoweider: no probs going over again this monday for another week of it. Have to say the folks on Arran are some of the nicest most laid back folk i meet in my job.
rarely do a job without a cuppa and biccies being offered.im staying away from the free burger vans this week though as im kind of pigged out on fried food.
what part of the island are you on, its weird how the east got next to nothing but the west got blitzed. been covering arran as part of my job for over 20 years and never seen anything like it.
Snoweider - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to buzby:
I'm based in Lamlash, and was one of the lucky ones who got generator power on Saturday morning! Spent a most of the week in the west helping out though. Reckon I put on 7lbs from those darn burgers!
Snoweider - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:
Managed to get a 7 pitch wintery ramble at about grade 2 on the back of Cir Mhor yesterday. On the evidence seen from Goatfell the previous day we left the ice screws behind which was an error!
gilliesp on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:
Possibly subject of a new thread but has anyone looked at or climbed Pan's Pipe on Cir Mhor's NE Face? One report suggested lots of green ice in that area seen across corrie from Castles ridge... Any info appreciated?
Snoweider - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to gilliesp:
Its getting there, though it looked very necky yesterday. There is a picture of the top bit on my blog here: http://www.wildonarran.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/cir-mhor-ramble.html
fmck - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to gilliesp:

I fixed a double rope down it and climbed it in the 80s. Crapped out of the solo as it just seemed too committing for me although easy climbing. That was when "once in a lifetime was climbed" named because the conditions needed to bring that climb in. It was no thicker that day as I looked at it then.
It seemed to me you might as well solo it as you would get no gear in or very poor at best.

The photo doesn't look familiar as pans pipe is a smear of ice on slabs?
Snoweider - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to fmck:
Committing indeed! Its the ice fall that feeds into the Pipes smear seen from the top of 1st pitch of Trap Dyke.
During the big winter of 2010 we did the 2nd ascent of a new route in Coire nam Fuarain on the other side of Glen Sannox. No sign of the grade III fat ice that formed at the base of it this year. Wonder if we will ever see it again?
fmck - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:

Last time we went up this terrace route we finished with Bells groove although we used turf clumps immediately left of the groove. ( groove itself was like climbing a greased pole) finish right on the summit. We then went back down and did Naismith route as it looked really good previously. It was a nice scenic II.
Snoweider - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to fmck:
I'm assuming that was a winter ascent of Bells and Naismith? None recorded in the current SMC guide.
fmck - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to Snoweider:

Yes I recorded climbs I did at first such as broomstick ridge, boundary ridge but just lost interest reporting as a lot of stuff folks were saying had already been done just not reported.

Incidentally I reported Stacach gully but it was then discovered someone did it in the 60s. I did the left hand route buttress at grade IV and a route starting in Stacach IV/V. Soloed right hand route buttress at II/III ( awkward move out a sentry box) and two other III s over to the right of right hand route.

I like Stacach its position is about as high as you can winter climb on Arran.
Snoweider - on 01 Apr 2013
In reply to fmck:
There is a new SMC guide in the offing- I think there is a small amount of new stuff going in there, including Naanaarpoq- the route I mentioned from 2010. It only got recorded because Andy Nisbet read about it on UKC. I wonder how much stuff here doesn't get recorded?
baileyswalk - on 02 Apr 2013
In reply to fmck:

> Incidentally I reported Stacach gully but it was then discovered someone did it in the 60s. I did the left hand route buttress at grade IV...

Funny, I was looking at that line thinking it looked quite nice. Not all that many buttress routes in my guide book, and these are probably more likely to come into condition with a cold wind and some rime. I would like to get pinnacle ridge done at some winter, surely that would be in condition at some point most winters?
Snoweider - on 02 Apr 2013
In reply to baileyswalk:
Reckon pinnacle ridge would go at the moment, though the snowy approach to Western Stoneshoot made us pause on sunday, hence the rambling line we did via Trap Dyke. Hopefully will have consolidated a bit by now.
fmck - on 03 Apr 2013
In reply to Snoweider:

I tried pinnacle ridge as a school boy thinking we were the first to climb it although It had been done already at that point. There was a lot of soft deep snow and the usual cant find runners etc. we did a pitch but felt we didn't really know what we were getting into. Tearing heather n grabbing spikes that detached etc. I reckon a good freeze and little snow will make it a lot easier to route find. Never got back round to doing it.

Snoweider - on 03 Apr 2013
In reply to fmck:
It looks fab. Definitely on my list. Heading back up Glen Sannox early tomorrow. Will let you know how we get on....
Stuart the postie - on 03 Apr 2013
In reply to Snoweider:

Beinn Nuis was in amazing nick on Monday and Tuesday, climbed there both days!

Stuart
Snoweider - on 03 Apr 2013
In reply to Stuart the postie:
Brilliant- what routes did you get done?
Stuart the postie - on 03 Apr 2013
In reply to Snoweider:

After the Storm VI,5 and The Nuis' Tooth III,4.

I first spied After...... back in 96, was good to finally climb it!!

Stuart
Snoweider - on 03 Apr 2013
In reply to Stuart the postie:
Nice one!! Is the tooth a FA too? Not in my old guide.
Stuart the postie - on 03 Apr 2013
In reply to Snoweider:

Aye, it's new too. It climbs the spur, right of Gully 5, up turfy grooves on the R/H side, before returning back onto the crest and finishing on top of the pointed block.

Stuart
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Snoweider - on 03 Apr 2013
In reply to Stuart the postie:
Ooh that sounds fun. Looking at my pics of Nuis now and I can see where you mean. Looks great actually- excellent situation.
Al Walker - on 04 Apr 2013
In reply to Stuart the postie:
Hey Stuart

given that I've been away for 20 odd years and have lost track, has anyone done the line that sometimes forms roughly up the line taken on the Nuis Face by the Summer route Right On? It was one of those ephemeral lines, brilliant looking, but you have to be there just when it's in. Thin ice and turf I recall from when I had a wander there just as it was vanishing.

It would have to be one of the most stunning Winter lines on Arran when there.
fmck - on 04 Apr 2013
In reply to Al Walker:

Don't think that line has. I suppose you went on that day to do gully 5. I was there and we walked up to glen rosa together once we got off the last ferry on the Friday night.

1987 ?
fmck - on 04 Apr 2013
In reply to Stuart the postie:

Good stuff Stuart your not taking it easy these days then:)

Brian completes his Munro round (commuting from Australia) on may the 18th.
Al Walker - on 04 Apr 2013
In reply to fmck:
Aye, I remember meeting you the weekend we did Gully 5 Fraser, and I recall you were on Cir Mhor the day we did The Ozone Layer too.

We were up looking at the Nuis Face route a year or so before that, but it
got warm and sunny, and the route fell down before our eyes..... Such is life. Never got back there - moved off to New Zealand instead.

For what it's worth, the guys who did the second first ascent of Pinnacle Ridge thought it one of the better routes of that standard that they'd done, and they'd done a lot! You weren't the only one who found that someone else had been there first. Me too !!!

There are still a fair few lines to do over there, it's just a matter of being able to get there when the weather plays ball. We're planning on being back in Scotland at the back end of next Winter, and it would be great to get back onto something on Arran again, but, I'll probably bring the warmest Winter on record with me.

fmck - on 04 Apr 2013
In reply to Al Walker:

Oh yeh forgot about that. My second couldn't get round the second pitch which was probably just as well considering the climb we were trying to do. Nearly the same league as those that did the FWA of sou'wester slabs. Dear oh!

I did seem to have a catalogue of failures. When you did Cubic ridge FWA Dez and myself couldn't even find the start of our climb over at Tarsuinn. I think you ended up on the wrong side of the Island? Wild weather. We were surprised to find someone else's footprints in the coire only to discover they were our own! What a couple o eajits : )
Al Walker - on 04 Apr 2013
In reply to fmck:

Yes indeed, I still have no idea how we ended up walking off the wrong side of the ridge, and I can assure you that Glen Iorsa is a long long walk in the dark and the rain with only one failing torch between you. We were lucky that there was a bus that stopped and gave us a lift back to the mouth of Glen Rosa. Got back to the tent around midnight that time.....

Ah, all this reminiscing, just as well Winter will soon be coming to the Southern hemisphere !
Snoweider - on 04 Apr 2013
In reply to Al Walker:
Glen Iorsa in the dark and the rain sounds horrific!
fmck - on 04 Apr 2013
In reply to Snoweider:

Btw : Al Walker did the previous climber guide book to Arran. Published 1989.
Snoweider - on 04 Apr 2013
In reply to fmck:
In very good company on this thread. :-)

Went up to Sannox again today. Still a fair bit of ice about but temps high and water running behind.
Al Walker - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Snoweider:

I can't recommend it, we were both suffering from nightmares for weeks afterwards. Then once we'd escaped the peat hags and bogs, the farmer's dogs tried to eat us as we snuck past....... Yep always trust the guidebook author to know where he's going.
Snoweider - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Al Walker:
Glen Iorsa is somewhere I have managed to avoid so far. It looks nice from above... All those little pools and streams twinkling in the sunlight!

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