Walking in Snowdonia

When: 27 to 30 August 2005

Who: Julian, Rachel, Ian, Helen, Rachel, Rob, Clare, John, Clare

Many thanks to Ian for these photos.


All nine of us gathered not too long after nine o'clock and found our way out of the camp site and began a circular walk to the north of the road.

The group looking backSome way up the valley side we paused for a rest and looked back across to the camp site (far left), the imposing north ridge of Tryfan, and the lake Llyn Ogwen. In the foreground are the backs of Helen, John, Clare, Rachel M, Clare and Rob.

On the tops we had some good clear views, but also some misty clouds blowing coldly up at us from the valleys below.

Cloud coming up to meet us  River in the valley  Rachel on the rocks

John eating, with a magnificent view of the valley  Coming down  Stream

In the evening we had a jolly good barbecue at the camp site, with plenty to eat and drink. The highlight was Rachel M's home-made blackberry and apple cake.


The energetic souls (Ian, John, Clare, Helen, Clare and Rob) climbed the Glyders, ending up in the clouds. These are their pictures. Meanwhile I went for a quieter walk with the Rachels from Llyn Dinas to Beddgelert, peering in to disused copper mines on the way.




A cold blow and a rainy night. All of our tents had been straining and flapping noisily in the wind, so some of us hadn't got much sleep. Clare and Rob had both left in the evening. In the morning, while I was prepared to stay put until the weather should clear up, John and Clare packed up and said goodbye in the rain. Rachel S's dome tent was still being flattened by each gust of wind and had been letting water in.


The remaining five of us decided to drive out to visit the Llechwedd Slate Caverns near Ffestiniog to be out of the rain. The deep mine tour was atmospheric but rather lacking in informative detail. The recorded speech can be summarised as: "We lived most of our lives down here, we did, and we're proud of it. Isn't it dark?" and the lighting showed how dark it was. Up above, we eventually found a bit of a museum and a real man demonstrating how slate is split into slates, which considerably improved the visit.

In the afternoon we took a relatively gentle walk from Bryn Glas up by a reservoir and back by the river Afon Dwyryd.



Rachel M's leg was playing up so she walked along Llyn Ogwen by herself. The rest of us (me, Rachel S, Ian and Helen), joined by Tim, Helen's brother-in-law, who just happened to turn up at the camp site with his son, scrambled up Tryfan. (Read this brief overview of it.) Tim had climbed there before and suggested we tackle it from the north ridge.

Tryfan, seen from the East. (This photo by Toby Speight from CUHWC.)

Looking back down at Llyn Ogwen.

We passed a herd of mountain goats on the way up, and then found The Gun where Rachel and I each posed for photos.


After that, the scrambling became much steeper and harder from time to time.

Helen follows Tim up a rather steep bit.

At the top, Tim and I each claimed the Freedom of Tryfan by leaping from Adam to Eve, the pair of monoliths that stand on the 3002-foot summit with a huge drop beside them.

Naturally, if you have been there and leapt across and back again downhill, onto the smaller surface, downwind, towards the scary drop, when it was all covered in ice, then you have a right to feel smug :-)


We had a go at descending the east side in a gully but it was too steep for most of us so we went on and down the back instead. These views are of the Glyders to the south-west, and of the east side of Tryfan from close by.


JAF monogram Copyright: text © Julian Foad, 2005; photographs © Ian Goldby, 2005.