WHILE recent storms in Scotland caused major disruption on roads and railways, the heavy snowfall brought by the extreme weather has provided "stunning" conditions for skiers and snowboarders.

The downpours fell as snow in and around the mountain ski areas, particularly in the west and central Highlands, and Ski-Scotland said winter sports enthusiasts were enjoying great conditions as a result.

Heather Negus, chairwoman of Ski-Scotland, said: "This is not the weather pattern we have come to expect.

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"For there to be so much snow in the west in early January is quite exceptional, although the central and eastern Highlands often benefit from these large dumps of snow around New Year."

Ski-Scotland said the Glencoe Mountain resort, was reporting stunning conditions, with wide and deep snow cover across all the runs.

Equally, the Nevis Range, the highest of Scotland's ski areas, has extensive snow cover on the summit and upper runs with most lower runs also complete.

The CairnGorm Mountain has been offering great skiing across the mountain, as has the nearby Glenshee resort, near Blairgowrie.

In addition to the current conditions, more snow is expected to fall at the resorts at CairnGorm, Glencoe and Nevis Range.

Meanwhile, the Met Office has said it is too early to confirm whether climate change is behind the recent storms that have wreaked havoc on Britain, despite Prime Minister David Cameron saying he suspected it was linked to the extreme weather.

Meteorologists said that no scientific research had been carried out into the cause of the heavy rain and floods that have blighted much of the country over Christmas and the New Year.

The latest Met Office yellow warning replaced the threat of rain with ice for Wales and England, excluding the north east, today, especially in places with large areas of standing water.

Around 100 flood warnings in England, four in Scotland and one in Wales remain in place with forecasters predicting freezing temperatures and possibly snow in the north next week.