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Author Topic: Any advice on Snowdon please  (Read 3181 times)

kingsley

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Any advice on Snowdon please
« on: August 19, 2015 »

Folks,

Looking for any advice on Snowdon.  I'm heading over with 4 others at the start of September.  I have been "volunteered" to choose the route and navigate on the day.  I've bought the map and read a bit online - but obviously that just gives me part of the picture, so any real world advice would be very welcome :-)

Just to set the scene we all walk in the Mournes on a regular basis, but none of us are mountain goats into proper scrambling etc.  Sorry in advance for any stupid questions :-(

We are staying in Llanberis (B&B, sorry no camping this time ;-) so I am currently thinking of getting a bus to Pen-y-pass in the morning, using one of the tracks from there to go up, and then coming back down the Llanberis track.
(just for info we will have a car so using it is also an option if for example we instead started & finished at Pen-y-pass).

In terms of going up I have had a look at Crib Goch on youtube and it scared the pants off me!!!  Part of me would still really like to try it because it just feels like the thing you should do while you have the opportunity, however I do suspect I am too much of a wuss and also I doubt everyone in the group would be up for it.

So initially I was thinking of going for the Pyg track.  However now I've looked a bit more I am wondering about doing the other part of the "horseshoe", but in the reverse direction to what the less wussy folk who are also up for Crib Goch do :-)..... so from Pen-y-pass start out on the miners track and then cut over to go across Y Lliwedd, finally coming out onto the top of the Watkins track to reach the summit of snowdon.  From the map this looks like it should be a lot less scary - still a drop on your right but relative safety on your left, and I presume good views over the reservoir etc. to Crib Goch on the far side.

So wondering on peoples thoughts / advice in general (very happy to totally change above approach :-).

If going with what I wrote above then I was wondering about getting from the miners track to Y Lliwedd - any advice on when to come off the miners track or obvious paths to follow etc (one marked on the map but usually things in the real world aren't just as nice ;-)  What is it like going across Y Lliwedd?  What about the top section of the Watkins path - internet mentions scree.... is it hideous to walk through (I'm presuming as its one of the usual tracks it must be manageable).

Also on the way down the map suggests it should be relatively easy to venture out to Crib y ddysgl - i.e. just out to where the summit is marked on the map to get a different view (before any of the scary bits start ;-), and then turn round again and head back to the main Llanberis path down.  Is this pointless?

Cheers,
Kingsley

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andymcinroy

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Re: Any advice on Snowdon please
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2015 »

Hi Kingley,

I used to live in Chester and have walked the Snowdon Horseshoe many times.

Crib Goch itself is fine in calm weather. The exposed sections are relatively short and as long as you keep your body over the less steep western slope you will be fine. It's described in Ashton's book "Scrambles in Snowdonia" as grade 1. Saying that, it is probably the easiest scramble in the book and a confident walker could probably do it with their hands in their pockets. So is a scramble (but only just). It is far easier than Tryfan north ridge which is also a grade 1. The main worry is the exposure and I would pre-warn your party about that.

One option is split up your group into two groups (one going Crib Goch / Carnedd Ugain the other going Pyg Track) and arrange to meet at the top of Snowdon. The walk over Lliwedd is straighforward with stunning views. 

I would recommend not attempting Crib Goch in the opposite direction. No only will you be meeting a lot of traffic (most people scramble towards Snowdon) but you will also have to contend with the loose descent from Crib Goch.   

 

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kingsley

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Re: Any advice on Snowdon please
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2015 »

Cheers for advice Andy.  Sorry for not replying before I went..... I was on holiday for a week and when I got home from that I had like 3 hours in the house before getting picked up to head to Wales :-)

I didn't want to split the group, and most of us ended up not wanting to do Crib Goch anyway.  I think had we tried it we prob could have done it OK but probably much better not risking it - especially because one of the guys was scared enough looking over the edge of Lliwedd!!  Also the cloud base was low early on so I think it would have been pretty damp.

So as planned we went up Lliwedd and then down the Llanberis path back to where we were staying.  It was a great day out - as you say the views from Lliwedd were excellent (although sometimes just in the gaps between mist ;-).  As we got higher up onto Snowdon everything disappeared into the mist.  It is then bizarre to get to the top and find a café.... obviously knew it was there, but it's still a very strange experience.

Early on I got talking to another group who were heading in the same direction as us.  It turned out they were doing the horseshoe but in the opposite direction than normal - i.e. Lliwedd first.  Just mentioning because you said about the main flow of traffic being the other way.  They seemed to have done it this way (i.e. the "wrong" way) before, and their thinking was that because they end up going down Crib Goch later in the day most folks are off it by that stage because they did it on the way up.

I have to say I really enjoyed Wales in general.  The people are great, and the countryside is spectacular.  I will hopefully be back :-)

Anyway cheers again for the advice even though it looks like I posted to completely the wrong section :-)
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