Friday, 1 June 2012


A short walk above Llangollen today with Clive on my last day off before going back to work.Parking below Castell Dinas Bran we took the Offa's Dyke path until we reached Plas Yr Eglwyseg and we then took the slanting path steeply up to the top of the cliff's.We walked back to the stream near Rock Farm and then headed uphill to reach the summit.Another hot sunny day with far reaching view's all round.The summit and surrounding area was alive with lot's of Curlew's but i couldn't get a decent photo of them but i did manage a distant shot of a Cuckoo as we descended toward's the castle.We took the path to the disused quarry and then found a feint path back to the car,walking a distance of 5 mile with 1,600 feet of ascent.

MILEAGE    249
ASCENT      62,400
TOPS           62.

#35.SNOWDON SUNRISE.27-5-12.

With us enjoying a mini heatwave and the night's being clear me and Julie left Wrexham at 11 p.m. and drove up the A55 to reach Llanberis at 00.30 a.m. Having spoke to Steffan from the Pen Ceunant Isaf Tea-room's about parking at the cafe he told me of a lay-by further up the lane so we left the car there.We started walking at 00.45 and the temperature was 18 degree's C.It was a beautiful clear night as we started to ascend the Llanberis Path.I was soon sweating with my headtorch on so took it off and carried it in my hand for the rest of the journey.Gaining height we were stopping ever couple of hundred metres and switching the torch off and just staring up at the star's.With no light pollution they were very bright,some bigger then other's and lot's of them shimmering away,it was a fantastic sight,just as i looked down at the light's of Llanberis and beyond Julie spotted a shooting star but i didn't see it,dam.On a flat bit of path i left the torch off and we were just walking by the moonlight but when we reached a rocky bit i had to put it back on as i didn't want an injury.It was a weird experience walking up a mountain in the dark,having to look at your feet,watching every step you took and i noticed i was developing a pain in the back of my neck.This resulted in more stop's to sit down and look up at the star's,we were moving fast so i wasn't concerned we were going to miss the sunrise.As height was gained the wind started to pick up and we noticed the temperature falling as we reached the Halfway House Cafe just below the Station.The cafe had it's shutter's down and they were rattling in the wind making it quite spooky by here and as we were walking away from it i kept looking back as Julie kept saying "what was that noise",it was just our mind's playing trick's.Nearing the tunnel near Llechog Station the path get's very steep and i was getting a bit concerned because the wind was very strong here,blowing me and Julie about so we took another short break by the tunnel and i was amazed to see my own shooting star,happy day's.We put our coat's on,crossed under the railway track and carried on carefully up the scree path making sure we didn't stray to near the big drop into Cwm Glas Mawr.After a short distance the big drop is on the other side into Cwm Clogwyn and again great care was needed to concentrate to stay on the path.We were now sheltered from the wind by Garnedd Ugain and as the path get's flatter we were really sweating as it was still quite warm.Looking across the valley we could see the silhouettes of the nearby mountain's and as i looked up to the summit of Snowdon i could see about 10 headtorches flickering away.We now had reached the zig-zag's monolith and were back into the strong wind and as i looked down into Cwm Glaslyn i could see about 50-60 headtorches making their way up the mountain on the Pyg Track,what a fantastic sight.Looking eastward's on the horizon an orange glow was appearing as we neared the summit.Walker's were descending past us now and on the summit step's there was a checkpoint for the charity walk that was taking place,hence all the headtorches on the Pyg Track.A quick visit to the summit for photo's,that was a task in itself as the wind was trying it's hardest to blow us off,and we walked down to Hafod Eryri.Somebody was sleeping in a sleeping bag in the doorway so we got into the corner by the wall above him.This wasn't fully sheltered from the wind but good enough.I had made a flask of hot chocolate and a lemon drizzle cake and we had these here.We soon got cold as we had stopped moving so Julie produced a fleece blanket to wrap us up in,clever girl,and keep the wind out.We reached the summit at 03.15 a.m. the walk only taking us 2.30 hour's which i was amazed at as we had a lot of small stop's.The next half hour's was spent watching all the charity walker's check in,touch the summit and head off again.Twice i went back up to the summit to see if the sun had started to rise and take a few photo's as it was getting lighter and on my third visit i could see it starting to rise so went back down for Julie and we went back up and sat on the eastside below the summit marker with the blanket on us and for the next hour sat in amazement as we watched the sun rising.There were about half a dozen of people above us watching it now all the charity walker's had gone.As the sun was gaining height the colour of the sky was orange,it was beautiful.We decided to pack the blanket away and walk around to take photo's from different angle's and we were leaving the summit at 5.30.A slow walk back down the Llanberis Path now entailed.As the sun gained height Snowdon was casting a shadow on the distant mountain's,we could see for miles.There were lot's of bird's flying around going about their business and i was amazed at how many Wheatear's there were.Passing under the Llechog Tunnel the sun was now shining on Clogwyn Du'r Arddu and it's lake and Moel Cynghorion and beyond.We started to pass a few people walking up now and they stopped us and were astounded when we told them of our walk and all said they would like to do this.Coat's came off now as we lost height and were sheltered from the wind once more and we got back to the car at 7.40,a quick wash and change and were at Pete's Eat's in time for the 8 a.m. opening and a hearty breakfast.We had walked 8.5 mile with an ascent of 3,500 on this splendid night walk and both said we would do it again.

MILEAGE      244
ASCENT       60,800
TOPS            61.

Tuesday, 29 May 2012


Today's walk was a visit to my favourite mountain,Tryfan and it was my 31st visit to climb it.Having travelled up with Howie and Clive we met Glyno and Julian at the long lay-by near Gwern Gof Uchaf Farm.

It was very hot and hardly a cloud in the sky and after applying sun cream we set off.

We took the path through the farm and skirted below Tryfan Bach and headed for the North Ridge.The pace was slow due to the heat but we were all enjoying the scramble.About half way up to the cannon we saw lot's of soldier's ascending below us and one of them shouted up to us enquiring the whereabout's of it,we told them the way and they followed us up anyway as we were going that way.

We reached the quartz covered rock's and i knew we were a short distance from the cannon,scrambling over and around a few more outcrop's we had reached it,and we crawled up it to pose for photo's.

The soldier's soon arrived so we set off for the summit leaving them to pose on it.Reaching "Piccadily Circus" i made the decision to take Clive around the Traversing path on the east face thus avoiding the hard scramble over the false summit's,Howie came with us and Glyno and Julian opted for the tougher route.On the path we chose i kept glancing up and could see the boy's high above us waving.Below is Clive and soldier's on this path.

We let the soldier's pass and watched them scramble up one of the gullies but we carried on round to Little Gully where Julian had dropped down to meet us.The soldier's were now on the summit and jumping Adam and Eve above us.

We scrambled directly up to the famous rock's and met up with the other's on the summit,and about 80 soldier's as well.They provided us with some great entertainment with their antic's on Adam and Eve,even "planking" it.

After having a break we set off down the South Ridge and Clive made the decision to walk back to the car leaving us to take the Miner's Path over to Y Foel Goch.

A short climb up through rock's and we reached Llyn Caseg-fraith,this lake with Tryfan behind provides a great photo opportunity.

We soon reached the summit of Y Foel Goch and here we had another break.Heading north a short distance away is Gallt yr Ogof which we soon reached and after a few photo's we carried on along the ridge until we picked a fence up that Julian had followed previously.We followed this fence down to Nant yr Ogof and then followed this stream down to the old A5.Passing Gwern Gof Isaf we followed this track back to Gwern Gof Uchaf and then back to the car's and a waiting Clive.The distance walked was 6 miles with 2,800 feet of ascent.

MILEAGE      235.5
ASCENT       57,300
TOPS            60.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

#33.MOEL MORFYDD.23-5-12.

Parking by the Hebron Chapel in Rhewl i met Howie and Clive for a short walk on a blisteringly hot day.Leaving the village i was again dismayed to see another of my favourite boozer's shut down,The Sun.

At the fork we generally go right and aim for the drover's lane but today we went left to visit the small hill of Graig-ddu,seen below.

It was only a short steep pull up but on this hot day we were soon sweating a lot.The view's weren't the best as it was very hazy but with the sun behind us we had a decent view across to Moel Morfydd,our high point of the day.

One of Howie's friend's had said there might be some low flying today and within 5 minutes of leaving Graig-ddu a Hercules Transported flew low behind the hill,we would of had a great view of it had we still been on top of it.Skirting below Moel Morfydd a farmer was out feeding his flock of sheep and we had to wait as dozen's ran off the hill across us to where the farmer was putting the food out.Passing a large walking group we sat above Cwm-tydi and had a break with a great view down the Dee Valley and a glimpse of the Llangollen Steam Train chugging along.Picking up the Bryneglwys to Glyndyfrdwy road for a short distance we now hit a very steep section of rutted path that lead's to the summit of Moel Morfydd.As we gained height we could pick out lot's of other mountain's,the Arenig's,the Berwyn's,Yr Wyddfa,the Glyder's,Tryfan and the Carneddau.Soon we reached the summit and it's trig point.

We walked down and over Moel y Gaer and at the col turned left and headed back to Rhewl.This lane gave us a great view to the hill's we had just walked.

Maesyrychen Mountain from the lane.

Once we changed at the car we drove to the Chainbridge Hotel for a drink passing the large group we had seen earlier,they even had a drink with us when they too turned up at the hotel as it turned out i knew some of them from year's ago.We walked 6 mile today with 2,000 feet of ascent.

MILEAGE          229.5
ASCENT           54,500
TOPS                57.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

#32.HOPE MOUNTAIN.16-5-12.

After Julie had finished work and with the sun shining we had a short walk on Hope Mountain.Parking at the Waun y Llyn Country Park we walked back down the lane toward's Caergwrle and then turned left on a bridle path skirting below the mountain.

From this path you get a great view east.

Before we started to gain height we happened upon a field of bluebells.

Leaving the bridal path we walked up to the north side of the mountain and got our first view of Moel Famau.

Next up we passed the small disused quarry.

We now picked up the bridal path on the west of the mountain for our return.

Nearing the car park.

A quick change of clothes at the car and off for tea in the Hollybush in Cefnybedd.We walked 2 mile with 350 feet of ascent.

MILEAGE     223.5
ASCENT       52,500
TOPS             55.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

#31.WORLD'S END.13-5-12.

After a heavy night at the brother-in-law's birthday party on friday night and being hung over all day saturday we decided to get out of the house and do a local walk on sunday as the weather was set fair.Parking below Castell Dinas Bran (Crow Castle) we followed the Offa's Dyke path with good view's down to the Dee Valley.

And to the Llantysilio Mountain's.

Passing Tan-y-castell Farm the view back to the castle is nice.

On this beautiful morning the lane was a hive of activity,lot's of cyclist's and walker's setting off,load's of sheep and rabbit's feeding,lot's of bird's chirping away and i was amazed at the wild flower's on the grass verges,the Early Purple Orchid which was abundant taking my eye.

Passing Dinbren isaf we got our first glimpse of Eglwyseg,the limestone cliff's that we would be walking above on our return.

The Offa's Dyke path leaves the road and skirt's above Rock Farm on a lane and lead's to a scree path that contour's below the Eglwyseg.

Below the next photo's are all taken from the scree path.

Ty Canol below.

The path now enter's a small wooden area near World's End with our first view of Craig y Forwyn.

Arriving at World's End we had a break on the bench and i found my 500th geo-cache here the other side of the ford.

We left the Offa's Dyke path and followed the small stream uphill to reach the cliff's above Craig y Cythraul.

We now followed a faint path that stay's close to the cliff edge for our return to the car.

Looking across to the Llantysilio Mountain's and the Ponderosa Cafe i could clearly see the high mountain's of Snowdonia so i zoomed in on Tryfan which is 35 miles away as the crow flies.

Julie's Plantar Fasciitus was hurting so we descended via the boulder field down to Rock Farm and picked up the Offa's Dyke Path for our return back to the car.

Below,looking back up to our descent route.

View to Castell Dinas Bran on our return.

This cracking little walk was 8.5 mile long with 2,150 feet of ascent.

MILEAGE       221.5
ASCENT        52,150
TOPS             55.