Despite the onset of summer, a snow warning has been issued to climbers and walkers on Britain’s highest mountain.
More than 100,000 people try and conquer Ben Nevis each year – mainly over the summer period.
But today the Mountaineering Council of Scotland warned that “winter is still lingering on the roof of Scotland.”
Heather Morning the Mountain Safety Advisor with the 12,000-strong MCoS advised those heading to climb 4409-ft Ben Nevis to be aware of the late lying snow beds and “be cautious.”
“Walking on snow in summer can really add to your day out on the hill and be a lot of fun if the snow is relatively flat.
However, be warned: if you take a slip and start to slide – is there a chance that slide could take you over the edge?” she said.
“There are still large cornices – ledges of snow hanging over the edge of the cliff face – on Ben Nevis and many other Scottish Munros (mountains over 3000 ft). “Care should be taken to avoid these and stay on the rocky terrain – particularly in misty conditions when it might be difficult to see the edge.”
The main tourist track up Ben Nevis from Glen Nevis is very well defined, but hill walkers should always be prepared with a map and compass. Across the summit plateau area where navigation can be more tricky, there is a line of large cairns to follow.
Hill walkers are advised to follow the line of the cairns which will keep them out of danger and away from the corniced edges.
Weather conditions may also change quite markedly between Fort William, at sea level, and the summit – and anyone considering making the ascent should check the weather forecast.