Saturday, 20 November 2010

Snowdon 3.0

This weekend just passed I went to tackle Snowdon for a third time. I went with the Outdoor Duo group, of which a friend of mine from the recent National Trust holiday is a member. I was effectively gatecrashing their Christmas party (but I did pay).

After a night of cider and Karaoke at one of the pubs in Llanberis we set off up the Ranger path at about 9.30am, bellies full of porridge and toast. The weather was mostly fine, windy and cold but pleasant enough in the sun. I'd been down the Ranger path before but going up was tough. We hit the summit at about 1pm during the only half hour that it was sat in cloud. There were patches of snow all around and frost on the grass but it was still an achievement. I'd thought I was fit, but not compared to some of the people in the group!

After obligatory photos and a quick scoffing of sandwiches behind the now closed cafe (shivering set in within about 4 minutes) we descended via the Llanberis path, a longer but gentler route down. The group seperated a lot more on the descent as it's an easier path to follow and those who were more able put best feet forwards and got a shift on. I was towards the back but only because we had opted for comfort breaks. The rain set in during the last 45 minutes or so but it seemed a bit pointless putting on waterproof trousers at this point so I suffered wet legs and bedraggled hair whilst enjoying the comfort of my Berghaus waterproof jacket.

The dry room was made good use of back at base camp (the wonderful Boulder outdoor centre who looked after us extremely well and provided a superb Christmas Dinner). The following day some of us decided to do a "short 2-2.5 hour walk" beofre setting off home. This turned out to be a 4.5 hour jaunt up a slightly smaller hill but with added confusion where the path wasn't where we thought it would be. I can't say that we were all especially chirpy about this and I do feel a bit sorry for the leader who had obviously put a lot of effort into all this and was doing a grand job of encouraging everyone and keeping us together (even if our route did take us along the back of a farm were deceased sheep had ended up). Still, it was a beautiful walk, if slightly more slippery than the previous day. My legs were damn sore by the time we got back to the car. And we'd been stepping out because we had places to be!

So two days of walking under my belt I was looking forward to some rest and recouperation in Dorset which admittedly I did get... I'm not sure I saw a morning in those three days, but they did feature a beach walk from Sandbanks to Bournemouth and a short walk at Lulworth Cove. The beach walk was especially lovely and I was brave enough to remove my shoes and socks, paddle in the sea and feel the sand between my toes. Very refreshing. Another 4 hours I think. Lulworth Cove was barely a walk at all but I awarded myself the prize for Most Inappropriately Dressed Hill Walker of the day (a game my friends and I play whenever we engage in this sort of activity) wearing as I was knee high boots and a denim mini skirt.

So now I'm enjoying not walking much place. Parkrun resumes tomorrow and gym resumes next week.

1 comment: