Forecasters predict that snow is about to return to Scotland’s mountains

The recent spell of warm weather in Scotland’s mountains looks set to draw to a close, heralding the return of winter.

Mountain forecasts for the weekend show a dramatic change in the air mass affecting Scotland. Instead of warm air being drawn up from the deep south within a Tropical Maritime air mass, the Jet Stream is dipping south, and Scotland will be influenced by cold air drawn down from the north. Freezing levels are dropping below summit level from Saturday onwards and snow is forecast.

Now mountaineering experts are reminding walkers, climbers and skiers that it’s time to get into the winter mindset typically required at this time of year. The unseasonably high temperatures and lack of snow have meant many hill-goers have abandoned crampons, ice-axes and skis in favour of lightweight walking kit.

Mountaineering Scotland’s Mountain Safety Adviser, Heather Morning, said: “Combine fresh snow cover with high winds and poor visibility and it’s time to switch on that #Thinkwinter awareness again and reinstate those crampons and ice axes essential for safe travel in the winter mountains.

“It’s important to consider our mindset: over the past two weeks it very much felt like winter was behind us, so it would be all too easy to get caught out in the wrong place with the wrong kit. Planning is key this weekend to make the most of our return to winter.”

Check out the up to the minute information on snow conditions at the sportscotland Avalanche Information Service webpage and combine that information with the latest mountain-specific weather forecast from the Met Office and Mountain Winter Information Service websites.

Read our reviews of crampons and ice axes here. 

Top photo: Wallace Gilbraith, courtesy of Mountaineering Scotland.