A ski tour from Wanlockhead to Elvanfoot
Waiting out the weather
The day's weather was constantly changing. Better visibility meant better and safer routes.
Into the bowl
Some aspects were wind-loaded, some were stripped bare. Safe and satisfying route choices included ridges and bowls.
Nice snow but poorly defined, Scottish skiing often requires ski by feel. Use the Force, Luke !
What goes down, must go up ... plenty of soggy and precarious crossings of waterways, and not always a snow bridge to help out.
Avalanche crown wall
Standing on the grass above a 2-3 metre depth avalanche crown wall.The avalanche's crown wall was around 600m ASL, and its run-off was hundreds of metres long.
We estimated he crown wall at 50 metres wide, the run-off went several hundred metres and the 2.5 metre probe didn't touch bottom. Winter travel in the Southern Uplands shouldn't be taken lightly.
Skins on, skins off, on again, off. The order of the day, the descents were often short, but so thankfully were the climbs.
Which way now
On another col between little tops, choosing the best way to the next waypoint en route.
Lousie Wood Law
The ridge at the eastern end of the Lowther Hills descends gently but it's exposed and the snow cover was thin.
Skiing by headtorch
After dark, and nearing the end of our tour, picking our way through the moist snow en route to the parked car.
The lights of cars on the M74 motorway near Crawford and Elvanfoot as we approach journey's end.