Thursday 31 October 2013

Snow in the Cairngorms

Cairn Gorm

A day of darkness and storms has brought snow to the Cairngorms. Wind and rain raged throughout the night and into the morning down in the glens. The hills were hidden in the dark swirling clouds. With +5C the highest temperature reached here at 300 metres I guessed that high up the rain would be snow. And so it proved when the clouds lifted a little in the early afternoon to reveal a ragged edge of white along the hills.
Bynack More & Beinn Mheadhoin

When the showers eased I ventured outside into the strong cold wind and strolled through the meadows and woods. Slowly the hills appeared, bright white against the grey clouds and contrasting with the vivid colours of the woods. Above the trees it's winter. In the forests it's autumn. Now as dusk falls the clouds have lowered again and the hills have vanished. I expect more snow is falling.

From the left: Bynack More, Beinn Mheadhoin, Strath Nethy, Cairn Gorm, Stob Coire an t-Sneachda, Cairn Lochan

The photos were taken handheld with a 55-250 zoom lens on my NEX 7 camera. I used fences for support as it was difficult to stand still in the wind never mind hold a camera steady. The low light meant I shot at ISO800 and the photos are quite grainy and slightly soft. I haven't tried to correct this as I feel the photos reflect how the landscape was as they are. The world wasn't sharp or clear! The trees were swaying in the wind, the clouds were racing across the sky, the air was dark and heavy.


  1. You are certainly right about the onset of winter high up Chris. I'm just back from a quick trip up to visit Loch Avon and a very wild pitch on the grass outside the Fords of Avon Refuge - inside were 4 people who came off Cairngorm the wrong way and were forced to spend a cold night in the shelter without any overnight kit. In the tent we were warm and toasty although battered by strong winds. Conditions in the woods lower down were much more pleasant - quiet Autumnal camping - a real contrast.
    Dave Porter

  2. Lovely stuff Chris - winter in here and I think it could be a cold one - but who knows - and as they used to say on Hillstreet Blues - LETS BE CAREFUL OUT THERE

    Dave - no harm to the four who appear to have got lost - but their night in the cold will focus their minds for the future

  3. This is nice photography, but what all require is to visit such snow world and led to make some memorable moments of life as I am eagerly waiting for the snow world that is opening in Jaipur because I love snow as what if one living in hot area if get some cool, it is amazing.