Due to illness and other family commitments over the festive season, I was unable to take full advantage of the of the early winter conditions on the surrounding hills. However, following a phone call from ‘Big Nige’ I did manage to sneak in a quick trip to North Wales for a days walking.
Our plan for the day was to do a route on the Glyders as this offered the best chance of catching a few snow patches on the way. We started our route from Ogwen cottage and made our way up to Bwlch Tryfan which apart from the odd snow patch was snow free. A quick refreshment stop and our eyes were drawn (not to the Bristly Ridge – a classic scramble up to Glyder Fach) but to the Miners Track as the upper reaches still held snow. We left the bwlch and quickly reached the snow slope to make our way up to Llyn Casseg Fraith. The snow conditions was less than ideal but it was great to be walking on snow again.
After a short while the snow slope was conquered and we made our way up to Glyder Fach (994m) before heading out for the next summit Glyder Fawr (999). I met up with some friends on the way to Glyder Fawr (Steve & Gerry) which was a nice surprise At the summit of Glyder Fawr we had lunch and were treated to some great views of Snowdon and the other surrounding hills. The descent from the summit to the Devil’s Kitchen required the use of an ice axe as much of the slope was covered in snow. The descent of the Devil’s Kitchen under summer conditions is by a path that contained series of knee jerking stone steps! However, much of the path had been blanked out by snow and in one or two places we had to down climb on relatively steep snow slopes.
Soon the fun was over and we passed the Idwal slabs and were there were three groups of climbers having fun (I hope they managed to descend before the darkness set in). A short walk later and we were back at Ogwen Cottage and took advantage of the brew shack to have a welcome cup of tea.