Yr Wyddfa, Carneddeau & Rhinoggs

14-19°C, Sunburn, rain, fog & gales

Sunday, Yr Wyddfa: (Mt Snowdon, 1085m) and Yr Aran (745m): Got up when I woke (5am), then drove to The western slopes of Mt Snowdon. Started the climb at 10.30. Parked at Ryd Ddu and took the route up to Yr Aran. Pure blue skies and light winds. This day turned into a 10 hour hike.I came down from Yr Aran to the Watkin path and then climbed Snowdon. The Summit was too crowded to stay more than a few minutes, so then headed down the Snowdon Ranger track. After the drive to Wales, this was an additional 10 hour hike, I slept well that night after hotel troubles were solved.
So now I have done all of the major ascent routes of Snowdon. Those remaining are proper scrambles, but I can’t take Rosie on terrain like those.

Monday: Southern Carneddeau: A day of 3 summits> Penyr Ole Wen (978m), along the ridge to Carnedd Dafyd (1044m)> Carnedd Llewellyn (1064m)
This was largely straight-forward, especially after I met a couple of teachers from Tamworth who were experts on that route. The panorama at the top was …. <insert flowery words here>.
Near the rockwalls  of Craig Yr Isfa was a really tricky descent. Getting Rosie down here was interesting. I made a mental note to get her a harness, the sort you can lift a dog with. Perhaps a rope too; just in case the worst happens and we get stuck. Agile though she is, her claws face backwards so are not so great when facing a descending slope . I went ahead, turned and braced with arms apart to let her slide into my grasp. That’s real trust.
Tuesday, a day on the beach at Harlech & Llandanwg with Jo. A little chilly, but kept warm with cups of tea and hilarious banter. We saw Rosie watching the local Gwlffreandded; she’s obsessed!
Wednesday: Rhinogg Hills. A wet stormy day with strong westerly winds. Took the Roman steps route up from Cwm Bychan. As we got into the clouds, the rain stopped and visibility remained at about 30 meters. The steps were more a cascade of small waterfalls; I pictured Roman centurians in their Jesus-sandals. The stones were reasonably regular, smooth and rather slimy in places. Grip was poor. Rosie saw me fall once and came over concerned and licked my face. The perfect travelling companion; she makes other dogs look rubbish.
Finding lakes along the route as they slowly materialised out of the mist was a very impressive moment each time. You have to work out your position on the map with a compass direction matched against the curve of the lake-side. The water rippled softly below the grainy clouds that moved besides and through us. Both air and water had the same silvery colour so coming across lakewater each time was a shock. Unexpected and reassuring- the map reading was working. We then sloshed our way though rocks and black marshy peaty land. Stepping on innocuous patches of sodden grass often plunged your foot into flowing clean water. Another great day.

 I wish I could have stayed another few days, there is so much more to do and see. In the meantime, I am going to look seriously into kitting out with camping gear. Late hotel breakfasts were a bind, sometimes I didn’t finish eating until 9. I wake at six.
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