Snowdonia - February 2002
Exactly a year this weekend we went to the Brecon Beacons for a weekend "training" walk. Well it was my sister and her friend who were training for the Saunders Mountain Marathon in July of last year. Well just one week later, all the footpaths, moors, hills and open countryside in the whole of the United Kingdom were closed due to Foot & Mouth disease. It was to remain so until August, and the last footpaths only opened in December of last year, just over eight weeks ago.
So we marked the anniversary with another training walk for this year's Marathon - their entries having been carried over into this year. We decided to go to Snowdonia, and travelled to Ironbridge Gorge Youth Hostel on the Friday night, to continue to Llyn Ogwen on the Saturday, having breakfast in Llangollen.
The weather was fine on the Saturday and we spent a good few hours on the Carnedd Ridge, climbing first from the east end of Llyn Ogwen up towards Carnedd Llewelyn, before coming back along the ridge and then on to Carnedd Dafydd. The day was bright, mainly overcast but not too windy or cold. We decended the very steep path from Carnedd Dafydd back to the lake end by Idwal Cottage, arriving as darkness fell. Having lost the path at the bottom my sister and I ended up wading across the nearly freezing stream to get to the road, thawing our feet out during the walk back along the road in pitch darkness back to the car. A meal in Capel Curig refreshed us, and then we drove up to Pen y Pass Youth Hostel for the night.
The following day started dry, and not too windy. We walked up the PYG track and over Crib Goch. Fortunately the wind kept reasonably calm for the crossing of this ridge, whose exposure was quite a new experience for my sister and her friend.
The summit ridge was incredibly windy, the cold wind carrying rain too. It was quite invigorating up there. We climbed to the summit cairn, then sheltered by the closed cafe eating our snacks. A couple of fell-runners passed by, as well as a small number of walkers, but I think many had decided to call it a day due to the weather. We did too and descended down the PYG track in the mist. The warm ride home in the car was very welcome.