Moel Siabod disappoints
by Pensioner » Mon Apr 03, 2017 7:50 pm
Hewitts included on this walk: Moel Siabod
Date walked: 02/04/2017
Time taken: 3.5
Distance: 9 km
Ascent: 895mRegister or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
The approach from Pont Cyfyng was along a very boggy track through some atmospheric abandoned quarry workings. The bog became tedious but eventually my objective came into sight and in silhouette it looked rather impressive with the promise of some airy scrambling. After negotiating some more gooey boot sucking gunk I arrived at the bottom of the ridge. The day had held fair with a mix of sun and clouds but it certainly wasn’t the wall-to-wall sunshine forecast by the BBC. I started off over some boulders and soon arrived at an interesting-looking steep smooth corner which could be avoided on the right. This proved to be quite awkward and greasy with a few delicate moves to regain the crest. This was definitely into rock climbing territory and certainly at grade 2. Great I thought “bring it on”. However, unfortunately that was it. The ridge belied its appearance and the rest of it was just a steep walk with a few problems here and there. From above it appeared well defined but apart from the initial steep corner, which can be bypassed, it offered no real interest unless you count some impressive slabs and drop-offs. Its barely grade 1.
After one final scramble section I arrived on the summit rather disappointed and unsatisfied. Well at least it was a great day with extensive views and the brooding sawtooth of Tryfan grabbing the attention to the west. I had even got some exercise and honed my skills in ploutering through bogs! The long boulder strewn summit shoulder yielded a few problems before giving way to long soggy grass slopes leading down to the Capel Curig path on the north side. I use the description “path” reservedly because it was a hazardous mixture of water course, cork screws, slippery bog, rock-ribs, ankle breaking rocks and rock bands. Apart from that it was fine! And to cap it all I spent 30mins crawling through the roadworks on the A55. I would not recommend this route.
by Mal Grey » Mon Apr 03, 2017 10:51 pm
by Pensioner » Tue Apr 04, 2017 8:54 pm
by mattcymru » Fri Feb 09, 2018 9:06 pm
by Mal Grey » Fri Feb 09, 2018 9:25 pm
mattcymru wrote:Bit harsh calling Siabod a hill... it is 2861 feet. if you drive from abergele to llanrwst it looks like a huge mountain!
Indeed, and I'm happy to defend it again. My own report is here; viewtopic.php?f=16&t=19310
I obviously look at things in a different way, finding joy in just being out there; Pensioner has made 3 hill reports, each one expressing disappointment with the hill, which is a bit of a shame. I guess its all about expectations, and I get that some folk need the fun scrambly bits to motivate them, but though I love those parts, just being out there is all the reward I need.
by Pensioner » Sat Feb 10, 2018 9:35 pm
by dav2930 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 12:00 am
by HalfManHalfTitanium » Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:42 pm
Frank Smythe, who made the first ascent of a 25,000 ft peak (Kamet, in 1931) knew a thing or two about hills.
He expressed enormous admiration for Cnicht in his book Over Welsh Hills (1941), stating that Cnicht equalled Kamet in beauty.
In my own small way, I've made the first ascents of some 6000m peaks in Argentina, and climbed in different parts of the Andes, the Himalayas and the Alps. I also love the West Highlands, of course. But that in no way diminishes the affection I have for the marvellous Moel Siabod or the stunning Cnicht.
It's about enjoying every hill for itself, not about some scale on which one hill is ranked better than another. The Walkhighlands "user ratings" reflect not some arbitrary scrambling grade, but walkers' experience of enjoyment and affection.
- Cnicht has a rating of 4.68 (higher than that of any Munro)
- Moel Siabod's rating is 4.42 (which is higher than all but 19 Munros)
Let's just enjoy them all. In the words of Hamish Brown - "The hills are bigger than the sum of all our little games".
by HalfManHalfTitanium » Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:10 pm
by mattcymru » Tue Feb 20, 2018 11:04 pm
by davekermito » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:25 pm
I walked up MS via the Daear Ddu ridge with my 7 year old son and whilst it's not Aonach Eagach it's a fun scramble from start to the fell top finish. The descent along the ridge instead of the tourist path is great fun too, whilst not taxing.
I hope you can find a route that cheers you up soon!
by Sgurr » Sat Feb 24, 2018 8:34 pm
by Pensioner » Fri Apr 26, 2019 10:56 am
I too have widely read the mountaineering literature including books by Shipton, Brown, Tilman, Duke of the Abruzzi, Bowman, Unsworth, Bonnington and Borthwick. I recently enjoyed a very evocative book "The Last Hillwalker" by John Burns.
I do not visit or post to this forum often and I am grateful to you for pointing out the tables of user ratings. I couldn't believe that Cnicht has been ranked higher than Blencathra or Helvellyn to name but a few! I mean Cnicht doesn't even shine a light on Sharp Edge or Jacks Rake! Only the last 50m or so onto Cnicht's summit involves any kind of scrambling. In the list of Hewitts 15% are ranked higher than 4.0, whereas 23% of Munros have a user rating greater than 4.0. It is interesting to examine the corresponding Most Climbed tables which I suggest are a better indication of the popularity of these hills. Moel Siabod and Cnicht are respectively placed 121 and 130 out of 316.
by Borderhugh » Fri Apr 26, 2019 12:51 pm