Lean but not exceptional

18th January 2022

After a clear night, a weather front with cloud and some light rain crossed the area during the day. An early start mean that I was able to stay dry. The patchy snowpack was frozen and icy.

The sun briefly peaking through the clouds this morning. It soon disappeared as a weather front approached form the West. 

Aonach Mor and Carn Mor Dearg behind. 

I think it is fair to say that so far this winter has not been the most wintry of winters. At the end of the month I plan to do a post about the weather this month compares to previous Januaries. However, today I thought it would be interesting to have a quick flick through some blog photos from previous lean winters to see how this winter compares. There was a reasonable amount of snow at this time last year, as well as 2020 and 2018. However, if we compare conditions now to those in mid January 2019, 2017 and 2016, we can see that we are currently in a similar position, or perhaps actually slightly ahead of those winters in terms of snow amount, see the photos below.  The current lean conditions while slightly annoying are by no means exceptional.

Coire an Lochan of Aonach Mor on the 14th of January 2022, conditions will have changed very little since then. 

Coire an Lochan on the 14th of January 2019. Although there is a dusting of fresh in this photo, I would say we are currently ahead of 2019 snow wise. 

Coire an Lochan in the middle of January 2017. I would say we currently have a similar amount of snow to 2017. 

Ben Nevis in the middle of January 2016. I couldn’t find a good shot of Coire an Lochan from this month. It is hard to make direct comparisons, but as you can see from this shot of Ben Nevis is was a pretty lean month.  


Comments on this post

  • Mark Figiel
    18th January 2022 5:49 pm

    Thanks for the comparisons to previous years and look forward to more at the end of the month. Not only myself but i am sure Iain Cameron and fellow members of Snow patches in Scotland ( Facebook members ) will be hoping February and March will be completely different snow wise than January.

  • Scott Whitehead
    18th January 2022 9:07 pm

    Not overly remarkable but notable is that this past week has been colder in east London than Aviemore!


  • James Thacker
    19th January 2022 7:31 pm

    Looking forward to the analysis…!

  • Allan Crawford
    20th January 2022 1:11 am

    But how does it compare to the 1990’s ?
    I started winter climbing in 1990 and compared to now I see a big difference ?

    Thanks Allan

Got something to say? Leave a comment

    Latest Lochaber Avalanche Report
    RSS Feed
    Keep up to date by subscribing to our RSS feed
Service funded by sportscotland
Forecast data supplied by the Met Office
SAIS Sponsors