Posted: 16/03/2017 at 16:25
Bum sliding was nearly the end of me many years ago in the Cairngorms. We set up a 2 man "snow canoe" (large tough plastic sheet) and started poling with our paddles(ice axes) down a gentle slope singing the Banana Boat song as we went along. Of course the gentle slope soon got a lot steeper and we found ourselves hurtling down a steep icy slope. By the time we had both bailed out and deployed ice axes I was left hanging on a near vertical ice slope and couldn't get a toe hold to allow me to cut steps to get off the slope. Every time I eased the ice axe out I started sliding again.
My mate had bailed a fraction earlier onto softer snow and thankfully was able skirt the ice then cut his way across to make that crucial first toe hold for me and we both got off there safely. The skiers way below us would have been taken out like 9 pins if I had fallen, I reckon I would have hit terminal velocity on the way down. In both senses of the word!