Snow returns to Scotland's mountains

Snow in Cairngorms. Pic: SAIS Northern Cairngorms A SAIS Northern Cairngorms forecaster took this image on Saturday

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Fresh snow and temperatures have fallen over the Cairngorms just days after Scotland broke its highest-ever March temperature three times.

Images taken by Sportscotland Avalanche Information Service show a dusting of snow in the Northern Cairngorms.

SAIS forecasters reported a light covering above 900m (2,952ft) and a midday temperature of -3.2C at the summit of Cairn Gorm.

Aboyne in Aberdeenshire recorded 23.6C on Tuesday.

Forecasters expect the village to see temperatures plummet to 3C next week.

The Met Office said the outlook for Scotland for Monday was cloudy with rain and hill snow developing.

Snow may fall more heavily later in the day, while Tuesday was expected to be colder with frosts setting in but also some sunshine.

Rime ice forming in the Northern Cairngorms Rime ice forming in chilly conditions in the Northern Cairngorms

Tuesday's temperature in Aboyne beat the record of 23.2C set at Cromdale, near Grantown on Spey, the previous afternoon.

On Sunday, Fyvie Castle in Aberdeenshire recorded 22.8C, beating a March temperature record which had stood for 55 years.

Before last weekend, the record March temperature in Scotland stood at 22.2C.

It was recorded in 1957 at Gordon Castle, in Moray, and again at Strachan, in Kincardineshire, in 1965.

The average daytime temperature for March is usually about 10C.

Also on Monday, the temperature reached 22.3C in Aviemore in the Cairngorms.

A generally mild winter has led CairnGorm Mountain ski centre to switch to "summer mode" a month earlier than usual.

Colin Kirkwood, of CairnGorm Mountain, said on Friday that it was almost unheard of for the resort not to be able to offer skiing during the Easter school holidays.

He said it was glorious weather for walking, but not skiing.

CairnGorm Mountain, along with Scotland's four other snowsports centres, had been gearing up for a good season following two previous bumper winters.

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