Saturday, May 14, 2011

The Glyders of Snowdonia

We left Derbyshire at around 6.30am from Burton on Trent and Chesterfield. Since we were travelling from different locations we agreed to meet up at Nantwich. We arrived in Snowdonia at 1020 and parked up at Gwern Gof Uchaf SH675605.

Leaving the parked car in overcast weather and with forecasts promising rain and plenty of wind chill we walk along the A5 to the Ogwen cottage (SH649604) to commence our journey through the Glyders.

We walked steadily up the north east ridge of Y-Garn enjoying good views of the Idwal Slabs, at this point I was conjouring up the idea of further Welsh climbing raids. From the summit of Y-Garn we headed south-east and along the path leading over the top of the Devils Kitchen. We were still feeling strong and headed up the scree strewn slopes of Glyder Fawr.

Looking across to Idwal slabs (at the head of Cwm Idwal). It has reignited a need to climb in Snowdonia
The Devils kitchen (in this picture you can see evidence of the Syncline)

Although the wind was quite strong the rain and cloud had held off, as we approached the summit of Glyder Fawr ( SH643579 ) the cloud gathered and the excitement of jouneying through the Glyders in the mist was about to start.

The connecting ridge (known as Bwlch Y Ddwy Glyder) between Glyder Fawr and Glyder Fach is fairly narrow. Heading on up the ridge of Glyder Fach the rocks are distinctively elongated with a favourite direction. This is known as the Castle of the winds (Castell y Gwynt) and here it is not unusual to become confused.

Near the summit of Glyder Fach we stopped for some food and checked the map. Before setting off we checked the compass and decided and that a east north easterly bearing would lead us off the summit but we would eventually need to head east.

The rains started and gradually became more persistent and we easily made our way along the eastern ridge of Glyder Fach dropping us below the 850m contour took us below the cloud layer which was great because we could actually see something.

The ridge and summit of Y-Foel Goch is pleasant we dropped off the east ridge of this mountain and decended int Cwm Gern Gof following the left bank of the river we arrived at Gwern Gof Isaf ( SH685601 ) a quick walk along the road and we reached the car at around 1800.

It was surprising how long it had taken us to traverse the Glyders, too many food stops rather than navigation difficulties! It was good to revisit a place which I like so much. There are many ridges in this group of mountains which I am once again eager to explore.

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