Start: Snowdon Rangers car park
Highest Point: summit of Snowdon 1085m
Distance: circa 14km
Weather: Cloud, snow, cold
Vertical altitude gain: circa 1060m
Time: 7hrs 20 mins
Since "discovering" Snowdonia I keep a close watch on the weather forecast to see when conditions are going to be what I like to walk in. So the return of winter weather in early March saw me booking a room at the excellent Beddgelert Bistro, packing all my winter gear and heading up to North Wales again.
I was expecting the snow line to be around circa 650m, and as the lower parts of Snowdon came into view below the normal winter cloud on that mountain I could see I was not going to be dissapointed.
Then it was onto the frozen snow higher up. And on went my crampons: there have been some dreadful accidents on the mountain this winter with walkers sliding on the icy slopes and falling over the adjacent cliffs.
Visibility got worse and worse as I headed along the last part of the summit ridge. Walking conditions I love, but conditions that must only ever be walked in by those fully competent in dealing with them, including knowing when to turn back below a summit. As I has done myself a few weeks before in the Carneddau when I felt I was getting out of my depth in suddenly changing conditions.
It was a cold and lonely summit on Carnedd Ugain. From which I quickly descended before heading back down the Rangers Path. For my descent to the valley I led three guys who had come up the Pyg track, and who had very wisely decided that without crampons it was far to slippery to descend that route.