Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Snowdonia


Made it to Llanberis following a 6 hour drive cross country to see the sights, rather than face the monotony of the motorway system. Fair to middling chance we'll retrace our steps tomorrow to avoid the Easter traffic. 

While I like most parts of Wales, it has to be said that, if the sun ain't shining, parts of north Wales redefine grimness to an extent where even Aberdeen starts to look appealing. We even saw a quarry where I am convinced they dig grimness from the ground for export.






Being a natural early riser, travelling with Hay can be rather fraught - I can't sit in the room and read at 4am or pull out the mobile phone to peruse the news, having instead to creep downstairs and find somewhere warm and secluded where I'm not in the way of staff going about their cleaning duties.

Met up with a bunch of old school chums for drinks and dinner, including Paul who, despite having had me as his valet at school (he was 2 years senior to me), didn't insist on giving me his shoes to spit and polish for the morning. Lanterns were swung and old teachers remembered during dinner - in fact one of my teachers, who was a keen climber in the 60s and took many of us on expeditions, will be joining us for the Snowdon ascent later this morning. He's now well into his 80s, but is, unfortunately, dying of cancer.

The ascent commences at 09:30 with the infirm going up part way by the train. I do hope we are not about to feature on the BBC news tonight; "Party of 40 pensioners disappear on Snowdon during torrential rain and hurricane force winds...." Base camp has been prepared and Sherpas hired. Not sure who will be in charge of the oxygen. Will report further tomorrow and hope to be able to show a photo of one of our team at the summit planting a flag for the old school.

Spotted these boards in the hotel bar - apparently there's an annual race to the summit. However, look at the times of the winners of the 2014 race. How is that humanly possible?





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