Self reliance is a fundamental principle of mountaineering. By participating we accept this and take responsibility for the decisions we make. These Conditions Reports are intended to help you make good decisions. They do not remove the need for you to make your own judgements when out in the hills.

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Day two of the North Face Survey, put together by Nevis Landscape Partnership, got some good results. I spent the day with Ian (botanist) and Will in the top of Raeburn's Easy Route. There is so much snow left on the faces that we could not get to all the rock but we did find some new records of Highland Saxifrage, Arctic Mouse Ear and Alpine Meadow Grass. One area of Highland Saxifrage had about 100 plants and several of them were flowering.

Over on the flanks of Tower Ridge we had teams that found more Highland Saxifrage and the best find of the day, a group of about 100 Hare's Foot Sedge. This is a great find as it was known to grow only at one site on Ben Nevis at the foot of South Trident Buttress.

Roddy found several newly recorded geological features on Tower Ridge and Jenny had a very exciting day abseiling down the steepest part of the North Face of Castle Ridge. This included a 90m abseil, most of which was overhanging! Well done to Donald and Blair for making this bit of surveying possible. It's my job to retrieve their ropes tomorrow.

We had some dry weather today and some views as well. Unfortunately we don't get to enjoy much dry rock climbing though. The plants we want to record grow in wet, loose, slimy locations, well away from the classic rock climbs.

Thankfully, geologists like to see dry clean rock so we might get up Observatory Ridge and NE Buttress later this week. The weather has finally settled down a bit with some high pressure bringing reasonable conditions. Thursday looks like a good day and we might even get another dry day on Friday. Finger's crossed!

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