HILL, DALES AND MOUNTAIN HIKING

15th Sept 2008: Llyn Ogwen - Penyr Ole Wen -Carnedds Dafydd and Llewelyn

Start/Finish near Glan Dena, (Llyn Ogwen), circa 300m

Highest point: Carnedd Llewelyn, 1064m

Distance: circa 14 kms

Weather: Cool, wind, drizzle and low cloud base

Vertical altitude gain: circa 1075m

Time: 7 hrs 25 mins

Pen yr Ole Wen walked from near Glan Dena Pen yr Ole Wen walked from near Glan Dena Pen yr Ole Wen walked from near Glan Dena Pen yr Ole Wen walked from near Glan Dena

After the lovely weather of the 14th, the climate reverted to the more normal summer of 2008: cool with low cloud and drizzle!

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Path to Pen yr Ole Wen by the side of Afon Lloer

This was to be my hardest mountain walk for a couple of years and I was very fortunate to have a expert on the area walking with me! Especially considering the scramble ahead and the very poor visibility as we made our way through sodden gound, crossing the fast flowing Afon Lloer more than once as we initially headed almost due North.

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 continued Path to Pen yr Ole Wen by side of Afon Lloer

Not long after passing a faster flowing section of Afon Lloer, we turned East towards Pen yr Ole Wen, still inside the cloud base whose rain had helped keep the water flowing so well!

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Path to Pen yr Ole Wen

We had been folowing white marker posts, but these ran out as my expert leader got me close to the small scrambly section that would get us close to the summit of Pen yr Ole Wen.

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Start of small scramble on path up to Pen yr Ole Wen

And out of the dense mist caused by the low cloud base came the first section of the scramble: quite easy even for me!

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Small scramble on path up to Pen yr Ole Wen Small scramble on path up to Pen yr Ole Wen

The centre section, left, was the only part I had any problem with. A lack of supple leg movement, (I couldn't get my leg over onto a small ledge at one point), but guidance from my leader soon got me over that, and onto the third and final short section, (right).

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Scramble on path up to Pen yr Ole Wen

A look back down from near the top of the scramble.

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Final section of path up to Pen yr Ole Wen

Once over the scramble it was just a slow plod for me to follow my excellent guide and cover the remaining metres of ascent to the summit.

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 continued Summit of Pen yr Ole Wen

And then we were on the summit. Not huddling togther for warmth, (although it was a coolish day), but to get a self portrait photograph to mark the moment!

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Path between Pen yr Ole Wen and Carnedd Dafydd

The path now ran along the top of a broad ridge, leading to my second Welsh 3,000 footer of the day, Carnedd Dafydd. "Over there somewhere" said my leader!

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Carnedd Dafydd summit

"There it is", she said as it loomed out of the mist and cloud. Navigation bang on, again!

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Track to Carnedd Llewelyn

And so on we went. My leader presumably auditioning for and easily getting the role for the inexhaustable bunny in the next very long lasting Duracell battery advert. And this was just an easy section!

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Carnedd Llewelyn summit

The main focus of the day, the summit of the second highest mountain in Wales, Carnedd Llewelyn, was perhaps an anti-climax. A nice steep climb but just a rocky wind shelter almost hidden in the low cloud!

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Scramble off Carnedd Llewelyn Ridge Scramble off Carnedd Llewelyn Ridge

My leader used, with full accuracy, compass and map to find our way to what she described as "a small slide on your bottom on a slab of rock". Some bottom, some rock, I thought, as I looked back after somehow getting down a decent length steep scramble!

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 path down from Carnedd Llewelyn

We were still above the Cloudbase as we continued along the ridge away and down from Carnedd Llewelyn.

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Ffynnon Llugwy Reservoir

The track down from the Bwlch Eryl Farchog Ridge was steep amd zig zaggy in places, as well as being narrow. But also still above the cloud base, which we only walked though descending towards the Ffynnon Llugwy Reservoir.

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Bwlch Eryl Farchog Ridge in the clouds

Looking back up from the side of the lake saw only the lower part of the steep descent from the Bwlch Eryl Frachog Ridge.

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 Farm road from Ffynnon Llugwy Reservoir

Leaving the reservoir we joined a long tarmac farm access road that eventually started a gentle, then not so gentle descent back down to the main road in the valley!

Carneddau walk, 14th Sept 2008 View of Llyn Ogwen

So now it was all tarmac back to the car parked alongside Llyn Ogwen. Still only not far below the cloud base as it had been for most of a day that had seen a really good walk. In what I am sure, (if I could have seen it), was lovely Snowdonian mountain scenery. Indeed to see some of the views have a look at my walk leaders photos taken on a similar route just a week later, (Pen Yr Ol Wen / Carneddau walk).