Sunshine and Showers

14th March 2019

Or, it felt like showers with a glimpse of sun… I timed it badly to arrive on the summit of Creag Dhubh, Beinn Eighe just as a particularly prolonged and intense shower passed. The snowpack was thawing at all levels for a time today with the showers falling mainly as sleet and hail on the tops, with a hint of fresh wet snow!

A wintry looking Creag Dhubh at the east end of Beinn Eighe. The snowline is at around 550m. The snowpack remains quite shallow with deeper accumulations around coire rims and ridge flanks.

Most snow on North through East to South-East aspects. Rapidly thawing at lower levels.

Looking up the East ridge of Creag Dhubh, with the Black Carls and Sgurr nan Fhir Duibhe on the left. Little evidence of cornices.

After the shower – sunshine in Kinlochewe!

(Above 2 photos) Dwarf Juniper (Juniperus communis ssp nana) Look carefully to each footstep! This prostrate subspecies of Common Juniper occurs in remote areas with a cool oceanic climate, and evidence suggests that Dwarf Juniper is considerably less widely distributed than in the past, and is absent from large areas of seemingly suitable habitat in North-West Scotland. The communities appear to be at risk because of a lack of seedling recruitment and from possible impacts of grazing or burning – or as in this instance above, damage from ‘bootfall’…

 

 

 

 

 

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