Today was all about getting in, getting up and getting out before both the temperature and the winds increased.
As we got blown down the ridge at the end of the day, I worked out that it was 1993 when I led my first real winter climb. Not wanting to sound like a bore, but back in the days, things were done differently. There was no avalanche service nor the weather resources that we have now and there certainly was not the good old tinterweb.
You just had to learn the hard way. I remember becoming fascinated with weather forecasts and drooling over guide books to try and remember as much information as possible. I remember driving for hours, walking for hours to only discover that the route wasn't actually there and returning back to the car without a route in the bag on more than one occasion. However, every day in the hill is a school day and without fail it expands the knowledge base.
So today, we done a combination of 3 different routes - 2 of which I have done on numerous occasions but 1 new pitch. It looked nice so we just climbed it.
More importantly it was -1.5 in the valley this morning when we left and it was 7 degrees when we got back late this afternoon. All part of that consolidation cycle that is so important in scottish winter climbing.