Analysing terrain data
The exposure grade does not take into account objective hazards (stone fall, seracs…) but only the consequences of the skier falling.
Low Exposure (E1): Exposure is limited to that of the slope itself. Getting hurt is still likely if the slope is steep and/or the snow is hard.
Medium Exposure (E2): As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.
High Exposure (E3): In case of a fall, death is highly likely.
Extreme Exposure (E4): In case of a fall, the skier faces certain death.
This hike goes from the Ptarmigan top station building, travelling up to the summit of CairnGorm at 1244 metres, and continues in a westerly direction, accessing the ridge of Coire an t-Sneachda at 1176 metres. The hike to the summit takes approximately 30 minutes.
There is a fence that marks the route, which is usually partly visible in winter.
From the summit cairn, you can ride down the Coire Cas headwall, or continue in a westerly direction to access the significantly more challenging terrain in Coire an t-Sneachda, such as Jacob's Ladder and Aladdin's Couloir.
The route can be made in to a loop, by skiing out of Coire an t-Sneachda all the way back over in to lower Coire Cas.
If snow conditions allow, it's also possible to ski right out of Coire an t-Sneachda and finish near the Cairngorm base station and car park.