Hewitts: Tryfan, Glyder Fach, Glyder Fawr, Y Garn.
Distance: 12 km.
Time: 7 hours, 30 minutes.
Weather: Overcast turning to sunshine.
Today was supposed to begin in Dolgam campsite at Capel Curig, but we had accidentally stopped off at my mate Gordon's place on the way down to Wales, and forgotten to leave again! An hour's drive had us at the foot of Tryfan and ready to start walking. Jackie's only previous experience of Snowdonia was Snowdon via the railway path in the rain when she was a kid, so I thought we'd just go straight for the good stuff as an introduction, rather than messing around on more obscure hills.
There's no walk-in on this route, unless you count the 100m or so of boulders that don't actually need to be crossed to get to the foot of the North Ridge. I took us that way anyway of course .
Not the most auspicious start for Jackie
We didn't mess around too much lower down on Tryfan - there is more scrambling in this circuit than you can shake a stick at if you want it, and we had foolishly agreed to meet my parents for a meal out at 6:30pm. The consequence was that we almost missed the Cannon - caught it just before we went past though. Jackie disappointed me by not balancing on the end of it - she's supposed to be more hardcore than this!
Pen yr Ole Wen
Pen yr Helgi Du
Summit of Tryfan looming
Not so hardcore now, eh?
As we approached the most exposed bit of scrambling, the wind rose and a few spits of rain fell. Jackie manged to pull on a bit of rock that moved which freaked her out (given she'd ended up fracturing her ribs last time that happened), so we decided to skirt around the top of the East Face rather than go directly over the north summit. This isn't really any easier but it feels less exposed. It is also a great little tour of the gullies and ridges of Tryfan.
On the traverse
A couple in front of us made a few of the moves look more difficult than required, but we had no problems. Admittedly I probably took a slightly more direct route up the last few meters to Adam and Eve, which made things quite interesting!
Skirting the North Summit
Looking back to the North Summit
'Is this really the way to the top?'
The cloud was brushing the summit, but it cleared and the sun came out a bit, which was great. I was disappointed that Jackie didn't jump Adam and Eve (not that I ever have either) - maybe next time, eh?
Adam and Eve
Llyn Bochlwyd and Y Garn
Plenty of clattering around over boulders got us down to Bwlch Tryfan, after which I decided that Bristly Ridge would probably be better left for a day with more confidence and time. We crashed up the scree to the east of it, which is a bit of a cop-out, but actually nowhere near as bad an ascent as I remember....then somehow I forgot to visit the cantilever .
Looking back to the summit
Far South peak
Back to Tryfan
Y Foel Goch
Down Nant Ffrancon
'What's all this crap?'
Plenty more boulders on the summit of Glyder Fach - Jackie was simultaneously impressed and annoyed as she almost fell down the various chasms and gaps about half-a-dozen times .
On the summit of Glyder Fach
Castell y Gwynt
After this, the going was much faster, and although we were pushed for time, we knew we could mange Glyder Fawr as well. But what about Y Garn?
Cwm Bochlwyd and Tryfan
Summit of Glyder Fawr
Llyn y Cwn and Y Garn
We made a fairly rapid descent of the scree above Llyn y Cwn and decided that we just about had time for Y Garn as well. It was a shame we had a deadline for our meal in the Ty'n y Coed as the weather was constantly improving, and a nice evening out in Cwm Idwal would have been lovely.
Pen yr Ole Wen
Across the ridges to Tryfan and Glyder Fach
Top of the Upper Cliff
Crib Goch and Snowdon
Llyn Ogwen and Llyn Idwal
Tryfan from Y Garn
Tryfan from Y Garn
NE ridge of Y Garn
Descending the NE Ridge
To speed things up a bit, I legged it about halfway down Y Garn and took a shortcut back to the car. By the time I had driven round to Ogwen, Jackie was just arriving, which was perfect timing.
Pen yr Ole Wen from Cwm Idwal
Then we headed to Capel Curig to put the tent up and meet join my family for dinner. There were no concerns about being up early the next day as the weather was forecast to be diabolical.
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