Skiing In Scotland

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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby Tony Crocker » Sat Jan 01, 2011 8:23 pm

I've spent years on this forum arguing with the easterners about why the L.A.-Mammoth weekend commute is worth it. Many of the easterners (and others too) draw a bright line between daytrip skiing and skiing at a distance from home that requires overnight lodging. The daytrip advocates have valid points in their favor regarding cost and flexibility, which apply to q and High Rustler in Scotland. However q has painted himself in a corner by leaving his ski gear in Montana. None of us enjoy schlepping skis via the airlines these days, but I think it's worth the hassle to have your own gear available for both home and destination skiing. Patrick is rather firm in expressing this opinion IIRC.
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby Admin » Sat Jan 01, 2011 8:38 pm

Someone needs to step in and defend q here. Bottom line is that for certain financial reasons he chooses to spend his ski time in the western U.S. as he finds it to be cost-effective. Unless I misunderstand, he's unable to do both and does what he prefers with the means he has available. What's wrong with that?
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby q » Sun Jan 02, 2011 6:54 am

Thanks Admin, I was beginning to wonder if anyone understood what I was trying to convey!

It is nothing to do with hassle as such Tony, it costs for each trip I make to the USA an extra £50 out and $50 home despite travelling extremely light each year. My suitcase also included my boots so carrying only a seperate ski bag adds to the £500-£600 flight. Or in real terms by not carrying my skis it pays around 4-5 nights in the Motel 6 in downtown SLC. How many times are my skis used here in Scotland?
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby q » Fri Apr 08, 2011 3:55 pm

Today at Alta reminded me why I save my £ to spend the $ in the USA. Unbelievably good and the visibility was just like home :stir:
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby HighRustler » Mon May 07, 2012 5:54 am

Not posted in a while but I thought I would share some of my recent adventures to highlight the late spring season here in Scotland has been a bit of a classic...

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^Earning your turns...topping out on Tower Gully, Ben Nevis 14th April

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^ 14th April Tower Gully, Ben Nevis with around a foot of fresh

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^First tracks...15th April Easy Gully, Aonach Mor

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^Taking on the Coire an Lochain cliffs, Aonach Mor 28th April

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^No 4 Gully, Ben Nevis 29th April

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^Taking the high road into Easy Gully, Aonach Mor 4th May

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^Fresh tracks in Coire Buidhe, Beinn Mheadhoin, Cairngorms 5th May

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^Fantastic Spring snow high above Loch Avon, Cairngorms 6th May
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby Tony Crocker » Mon May 07, 2012 10:46 am

If I had that kind of terrain in my backyard I would not leave all my ski gear on another continent. Yes it's backcountry but I'm guessing the approach is not an all day marathon like San Gorgonio. And the altitude is more like Tucks. To beat the airline fees perhaps q should pick up a cheap used pair of skis online for home and continue to leave his better skis in Montana.
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby Admin » Mon May 07, 2012 10:54 am

HighRustler, I had heard about the great late season in Scotland this year and was wondering if we'd hear from you. Spectacular photos as always! =D>
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby flyover » Mon May 07, 2012 11:20 am

Wow. Spectacular pics. =D>

This one induces a vicarious adrenaline shot:

HighRustler wrote:
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^Taking on the Coire an Lochain cliffs, Aonach Mor 28th April


It looks like ball bearings above some . . . shall we say, technical terrain. Was that as dicey as it looks? Or, were conditions softer than they appear to me?
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby HighRustler » Thu May 17, 2012 2:07 pm

Thanks Tony and Admin. Remarkably with the exception of two days it has snowed every day at CairnGorm in the month of May which is all the more bizarre considering there was no lift served skiing within the month of March for the first time in 50 years.

Flyover, glad you like the shots :) The line taken was certainly fruity but the snow wasn't as bad as it looks...a little wind rime surface that had a softer layer underneath. The wind here always makes life interesting!

Some more pics from last weekend

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^ Mid May powder....Getting first tracks off the summit of CairnGorm (1245m) 12th May

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^Dropping into Castegates Gully high above Loch Avon. 12th May
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby Harvey44 » Fri May 18, 2012 8:10 pm

Stunning spectacular photos! My folks are always talking about hiking Ben Nevis and I never imagined it would present such technical terrain. Awesome!!
=D> =D> =D> =D>
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby HighRustler » Sat May 19, 2012 6:25 am

Thanks Harvey44. Ben Nevis is a real Jekyll and Hyde mountain. The traditional walking route up the mountain is very benign and simply follows a relatively dull route up to the summit largely bypassing all the fun stuff. Many walkers can summit without seeing any of the amazing scenery that exists. In contrast, the North Face of the Ben has an array of fantastic cliffs with a multitude of winter climbs available at all grades. It's not unknown for climbers from Europe or North America to come specifically to tackle the climbs which given the relatively low altitude is testimony to the challenges the North Face presents. As far as I'm aware, the legendary Scottish climber Dave McLeod, has climbed a route named Anubis which is graded at Scottish Grade XII (equivalent to M11 in technical difficulty) I've annotated the pic below to show you the main routes of descent available for us mere mortal ski mountaineers. The pic was taken back in March when we had far less snow than we do now :-)

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^Ben Nevis North Face by moonlight (taken from near the CIC hut)

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^ Looking towards Tower Gully from near the summit
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby q » Sun May 27, 2012 5:17 am

Tony Crocker wrote:If I had that kind of terrain in my backyard I would not leave all my ski gear on another continent. Yes it's backcountry but I'm guessing the approach is not an all day marathon like San Gorgonio. And the altitude is more like Tucks. To beat the airline fees perhaps q should pick up a cheap used pair of skis online for home and continue to leave his better skis in Montana.


I woke up this morning, originally i did not think it was groundhog day but maybe it is!

Tony, yes there is some fantastic terrain, yes I would love to ski some of it but put this year into perspective. This is a highly unusual year over here, the typical part of the year that you would expect to see anything like the conditions in those pictures in an average year is late March and early April which as you know is the timeframe that I choose to spend my very hard earned cash skiing what I want to ski. If we worked on back door basis I would go and ski Europe.

Until you guys are paying £1.39 a litre which would make your gallon with our current exchange rate around $8.40 I don't think you will get why I don't chase snow in the UK. With a 200 mile roundtrip to Cairngorm and 300+ mile roundtrip to Ben Nevis and other things to do in the summer I would rather do other things.

Even then Tony you need to remember that although I spend a lot of money coming to the USA each winter I am not swimming in money and as already discussed to death I prefer to spend my money on other things.

One of the things I hope to do this summer is climb more Munro's but again the cost implications has curtailed that more than it would have 10 years ago.

Rant over, we are not all rich and retired.
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby HighRustler » Fri Jun 15, 2012 1:52 pm

q, from previous discussions I remember you as a glass half empty type of guy but after your latest post I fear the glass has now been emptied and sorely in need of a refill! :-)

Fuel Prices - Most ppl who travel any distance to ski in Scotland, car share and split travel costs. Even a small car can fit 3 ppl with skis. Higher fuel costs only become an issue if you have no ski buddies. Do you ski alone?

As I've said before, relatively speaking, skiing in Scotland is not expensive - something you would be well aware of if you were ever on the slopes to witness the various demographics who ski here - I'm out most weekends so I'm well placed to observe who does/does not ski here , many of whom could only dream of visiting the US on a ski trip. FYI the distance I travel to the ski areas is no less than your own. I've skied Aspen, Deer Valley and various Euro resorts that most ppl would perceive to be expensive. Unless I'm mistaken, Scottish ski areas never appear on anyone's ski rich list..

I have no problem with you choosing not to ski in Scotland - that is your choice and there are many more like you. However I do have an issue with you making assertions about how prohibitively expensive it is which other people reading this forum may take as fact when that's not the case. Yes, skiing costs money but so does going to a football match, going to the theatre, having a meal and a few beers with friends. Unless you lead a rather spartan life, most activities cost money. For those willing to apply a little common sense some of these "prohibitive" costs (eg fuel prices) can be reduced.

IMHO, It would be far better to simply say you don't ski in Scotland and leave it at that.
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby Tony Crocker » Fri Jun 15, 2012 3:55 pm

With regard to cost of skiing, as I see it there are 3 tiers:
1. Daytrip commutes
2. Drive up resorts far enough to require overnight lodging
3. Resorts where you have to get on an airplane to visit
It is almost always true that cost of skiing in tier 3 >> cost of skiing in tier 2 >> skiing in tier 1. Cheap season pass situations are a possible exception. I also recognize the transportation cost per day gets watered down if you go somewhere for a month like Adam's winter breaks at Mammoth or q's annual trip to Montana.

High Rustler, icelantic etc. might argue that earned turns are cheaper yet because you're not buying a lift ticket. This may be offset by the extra gear you need to purchase up front.

High Rustler wrote:For those willing to apply a little common sense some of these "prohibitive" costs (eg fuel prices) can be reduced.

Adam is in grad school and lives 7 hours drive from Mammoth so he makes a strong effort to share the rides up there.
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Days in one year: 80 from Nov. 29, 2010 - Nov. 17, 2011
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Re: Skiing In Scotland

Postby HighRustler » Thu Oct 18, 2012 12:21 pm

Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival Photo Competition
In the last couple of years I've posted some Scottish ski photos on the forum and two of the more recent photos from last Spring have made it through to the final 12 in this year's Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival Photo Competition.

The voting/judging this year is a bit different to normal.....Facebook is required!

Rules
Excerpt from the EMFF email.

"We do need your help, however, to pick a winner for our photography competitions! The short-listed photographs from each category are now available to view on our Facebook page. To vote, you just need to 'like' your favourite photos. You can like as many photos as you wish, and the photo in each category with the most likes will win the competitions!"

I don't want to influence anyone's final choice too much :) as there are another 10 great photos to chose from but if you are on Facebook and interested in voting, then:

Click on the Links below each photo and register your vote by 'Liking' your favs.

Voting is very close at the moment so every vote would be greatly appreciated :)

The winning photos will be announced at the closing session of the EMFF on Sunday 28 October."

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^gavincarruthers dropping in on the Coire an Lochain cliffs, Nevis Range 28th April 2012 Click Here To Vote


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^Dave A entering Gully No 3, Ben Nevis 24th March 2012 Click Here To Vote
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