After arriving in Aviemore Friday night and then sleeping it off all Saturday it was time to get out today with a trip into Sneachda. Arriving at the car park i was surprised to see how much the snow had melted in yesterdays tropical temperatures, indeed it was still very warm today with the freezing level around 1100m, much warmer than forecast. I had the intention of using my approach skis to ski into the corrie, but this proved to be a waste of time as the path is free of snow right up to the point where you cross the stream. The snow in the morning was soft on the surface but still reasonably solid underneath so it wasn’t a wade in at any rate. Once you get a good view of the corrie you can see the huge amount of snow up against the back walls, despite most of the boulder field on approach being striped clean in many areas, makes for an easy walk in at any rate. Looking at the corrie you can see huge hanging cornices stretching between Jacobs Ladder and across the top on Aladdin’s Buttress, some of these have partly collapsed and set off very large avalanches, no point in going on those ares at the moment. Of the crags and ridges that aren’t completely buried the ones around the right of fluted buttress and across on Fiacaill Buttress look the safest lines. With lots of teams heading for Fiacaill I decided to do something on Fluted buttress instead. As usual I didn’t bring the guide book but picked out an obvious line heading onto a ridge with 2 pinnacles near the summit. I geared up at the rescue box and headed up the slop in the footsteps of a pair heading in the same direction. As I reached the pair at the foot of the climb they had already started off so I decided to climb slightly to the right of them, not good to climb underneath others when soloing. I soon caught up with them at the top of the first pitch where they graciously let me pass, the second pitch was not so easy with the snow not completely frozen and the ice on the rocks very thin and in danger of pealing off in the warming temperatures, was very much a combinations of using what ice there was, burying the ice axe shafts up to the head and even cutting a few steps. One a bit higher things began to improve somewhat with more useful ice, once on the ridge proper the rock was almost clean and dry with very little in the way of iced up cracks, good for gear but needed a lot of hooking and camming with the axes. The 2 fingers negotiated via a bear hug on the left pinnacle with the axes before stepping into a little col. The last wall was more of a dry rock climb with only ice on the very top, then it was all over and on the top. I wasn’t sure what climb I had been on until I asked the two below me, “fingers ridge” the shouted up, DOH, pretty obvious the the 2 pinnacles. After a bum slide down the goat track it was too early to finish the day so I had an easy climb/walk up Fiacaill ridge before another bum slide saw me picking up my kit and skiing/walking out mid afternoon. Not a bad birthday out I say!!