There were more than 300 avalanches in the Scottish Highlands last winter

There were more than 300 avalanches in the Scottish Highlands last winter

The service that provides avalanche information for outdoor enthusiasts in the Scottish Highlands begins today.

Reports for the five main areas covered by the Scottish Avalanche Information Service start on Thursday, providing condition reports and forecasts of the risk on the Scottish Mountains.

Frequent snow showers accompanied by storm-force winds in the Highlands will make life difficult for the service’s assessors who head on to the hills to measure avalanche risk. Gusts of up to 90mph are predicted for Thursday.

The SAIS covers Lochaber, Glencoe, Creag Meagaidh and the southern and northern Cairngorms.

A trial service for Torridon, begun last year, will run again from Christmas Eve, operating at weekends and holiday periods throughout winter.

Last year, the first avalanches were recorded in November, and the Highland mountains had large amounts of snow, with Glencoe seeing exceptional snowfall, though the valleys and glens of the Highlands escaped severe snowfall.

Last winter, 350 avalanches were recorded by the SAIS, most occurring naturally, with just 25 triggered by human activity. No-one died in an avalanche in Scotland last winter.

Reports and forecasts are available on the Scottish Avalanche Information Service website.

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