Patches of snow, such as this one on the most northerly munro Ben Hope in June, are common

Patches of snow, such as this one on the most northerly munro Ben Hope in June, are common

The first snows of the Scottish winter arrived early this year – in August.

A brief, two-hour flurry was reported on the Cairngorm tops last weekend and Mountain Weather Information Service meteorologist Geoff Monk said it is possible Ben Nevis’s summit might get a dusting this weekend.

The snow fell on patches still lying in sheltered corries high on the Cairngorm range. Ruari MacDonald of the Cairngorm Ranger Service reported a sizable patch in Coire Mòr on Ben Macdui and a small patch on the Coire Cas headwall was shrinking rapidly. Lying snow also remains in Ciste Mhearad and the Garbh Coire.

Winter mountaineers are hoping for another bumper winter after some of the heaviest snowfalls in decades last over the 2009-10 season, with some ski centres operating their ski lifts into June.

However, Mr Monk cautions that the early snows don’t necessarily presage another harsh winter. He told The Herald newspaper: “It’s very unlikely more snow will fall in the next 10 days.”

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