Monday, 14 November 2011


It's been on my to-do list to visit the summit of Arenig Fawr on remembrance sunday for a few year's now and this was the day i knocked it off.The weather all week had been poor in Wrexham,leaden skies,rain and drizzle but the forecaster's had predicted a nice weekend.I had a lazy day on saturday after getting up off night's and was raring to go on sunday,particularly as the forecast was for a clear,sunny day with reasonably strong wind's.We rose at 6a.m. and were leaving the house at 7.It was a lovely sunny morning on the drive there but it soon got cloudy.We parked at Pont Rhyd-y-fen where we alway's leave our car near to the dis-used Wrexham to Barmouth railway line and were walking at 8a.m. I had decided to take Julie to see the bothy by Llyn Arenig fawr so this entailed a 1.5 mile walk along the old road through the village of Arenig.

The old chapel.

Looking across to Arenig Fach low cloud had started to descend.

It was very warm walking along the road but as we turned onto the track that lead's to Llyn Arenig fawr and started to gain height it was getting windier so we stopped to put our fleece's and hat/ear warmer's on as it was a cold wind.

I deliberately set off early with the intention of having a brew in the bothy and to have a slow steady walk up to the summit of Moel yr Eglwys (AKA Arenig Fawr) but on reaching the bothy that was out of the question as a noisy group were surrounding it.

So we crossed the ladder bridge and found a spot a little higher up out of the wind and away from the noise.

Looking up the cloud's had really come down but it was brighter further east and i hoped it would clear before we reached the summit.

Reaching the cliff's of Y Castell the wind was gaining in strength making the going tough but i knew we had load's of time to get to the summit for 11.11a.m. so we took our time over the tricky rocky terrain.

We got no view of the summit,as it was a pea-souper,until we were about 20 metres away.We had timed it to perfection as it was 11 o'clock when we arrived.Although we had only walked 4.5 miles it had took us 3 hour's but we were taking our time,we didn't want to make the summit too early and stand around in the cold for too long.I was very surprised to only see 4 other people on the summit,perhap's the weather had put other's off.There were a few poppies at the memorial plaque to the 8 man crew of the Flying Fortress that crashed on August 4th 1943.

Julie paying her respect's by the memorial on the 2,802 foot summit.

It is only a quarter of a mile to Arenig Fawr South Top,another Nuttall,but in the strengthening wind which was blowing from the east crossing it's rocky summit was not an easy undertaking,great care was needed not to have an injury on the rock's.Julie near the 2,743 foot summit.

Heading south and descending the mountain the terrain get's very rocky so i had to take the trekking poles off Julie so she could hold the fence on the descent as the rock's were very slippery.Just as we reached the grassier part of the descent the cloud's started to lift,giving us faint view's at first and then the cloud disappeared all together affording us tremendous view's.The wind was still very strong,not as bad as our last walk on Llwytmor but not far off.

Finally a view to Moel Llyfnant.

The descent flatten's out to an area of small lakes and knoll's and in half a mile the summit of Arenig Fawr South Ridge Top (2,336) is soon reached.

My intention was to carry on south along the ridge to Craig y Bychau and cross to reach the south end of Moel Llyfnant and to search out the old mine working's on the ascent,but as it was horrendously windy i changed our plan's and we dropped down to the fence and crossed it to descend to an old wall where we took a break.we were sheltered from the wind on this side of the mountain and sitting in the sun it was very warm.Below,Julie admiring the view with Moel Llyfnant across the valley.

Crossing the boggy col we started our last big climb of the day and were soon getting buffeted by the strong wind's again.The cloud had been lingering on Moel yr Eglwys all day but as i glanced across she was now free of cloud.

Moel Llyfnant summit cairn with Moel yr Eglwys yonder.

The last time i descended this mountain i kept right and there was a tricky section of rock's that had to be negotiated so i headed further left and it was grassy all the way down to the track,result.

It is a 2.5 mile walk back to the car first passing the derelict property of Amnodd Bwll.

And Amnodd Wen.

The track here is very boggy until you reach the wall that lead's to to Craig y Hyrddod.

This track lead's down to the railway line and eventually back to the car.

After a quick change we headed to the Bryntirion Pub in Llandderfel for a sunday roast and a couple of pint's of Bragdy Conwy's fine ale.

The length of today's walk was 10 mile with 3,000 feet of ascent.

MILEAGE       422.5
ASCENT        104,150
TOPS              103.

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