In our quest to visit remote, rarely-visited peaks in Snowdonia, today we climbed Ddaullt (662 metres), a remote summit to the north-east of Rhobell Fawr in the Arenigs. After taking the minor road from Bronaber on the A470 to the deserted farmhouse at Cwm yr Allt Lwyd, we walked up a good farm track to ford the infant Afon Mawddach river, before climbing onto the North ridge of Ddaullt. A relatively short climb to the summit is guided by a fence on the ridge. The summit views are fantastic, with all the major peaks in Snowdonia being visible, and Bala lake easily seen to the East. A very pleasant day out, mostly in sunshine apart from a brief snow/sleet shower on the way up.
It actually stopped raining in Snowdonia today, after a week of almost continual heavy rain. It was still very windy, so going on the hill tops was not advisable. We headed to the Ogwen Valley and walked around Cwm Idwal, with great views of the surrounding peaks - Glyders, Tryfan, Pen Y Ole Wen. A nice day out after being house (or cottage) bound for the last few days.
The heatwave continues here in North Wales, as it does in most of the UK. We wanted to head somewhere for a cool relaxing day near some water. The coast and beaches were out of the question since they were rammed with people trying to cool off. We headed for the dramatic waterfalls in the rain forest at Ceunant Llennyrch above Maentwrog, thinking this might be a quiet cool spot. How wrong we were - the car park and lay-bys were jammed with cars, and we saw a long crocodile of people carrying picnic hampers, folding chairs etc, accompanied by children and yapping dogs heading up the path, so we moved on. We ended up at Cwm Bychan in the Rhinogs - a lovely spot by the lake just below the Roman Steps path. They were a few happy campers there, but it all seemed very pleasant and tranquil compared to the rest of Snowdonia at the moment.
It was too hot to climb a mountain, but we decided to head for the isolated lake of Gloyw Lyn, below the summit of Rhinog Fawr. It was about a 2 km walk from Cwm Bychan car park to the lake, over some slightly rocky paths, but once there, the setting is magical and we had the place to ourselves. We even managed a quick cooling dip in the lake before tucking into our picnic. The Rhinogs looked magnificent in the baking sunshine - a lovely day out.
Back in Rhyd this week, just as the heatwave kicks in. However, in contrast to the coast, there were no staycation crowds in the Moelwyns behind the cottage when we ventured out today. It was hot work climbing Moelwyn Bach, but we took lots of fluids and stopped to cool off our feet in a mountain stream on the way. We did not see a soul all day in the mountains, with stunning views all round.
Great walking weather here in Wales today. We went to the Northern Rhinogs and walked up to the summit of Clip (600 metres) from the farm near Cefn Clawdd. One of the best viewpoints in Snowdonia, yet rarely visited - we only saw two other walkers all day.
Back in Rhyd this week, and the forecast for today was not bad, so the mountains beckoned. We went to take a look at the Arans, a dramatic ridge of peaks that stretch to the south-west of Bala and its lake (Tegid). We climbed Aran Benllyn (885 metres) following a circular route from Llanuwchllyn, via a single track lane to Talardd, then climbing up onto the Aran ridge past the lovely location of Llyn Lliwbran, then turned left for the tough final climb to the summit. The sunshine was a bit hazy this afternoon, so the pictures do not really do the vistas justice - they are spectacular. A great mountain day out, rounded off with a drink and meal in Bala.
It is good to be back in Snowdonia after all the lockdowns. The weather has been great this week, so today we took a break from maintenance jobs at the cottage to go for a quick jaunt into the Moelwyn hills behind the cottage.
This afternoon we paid our first ever visit to the lovely secluded valley of Cwmystradllyn in the western part of the northern Snowdonia mountains. The valley is reached via a minor road from the Porthmadog-Caernarvon A487 road, just after the village of Penmorfa. Parking near the dam of the lake (reservoir) Llyn Cwmystradllyn, we decided to take a stroll around the lake, but with the benefit of hindsight, we would not recommend this, as the path is very wet, boggy and difficult to follow. However, the setting is lovely, with Moel Hebog and Moel Ddu peaks above the lake, and accessible using the old level that runs up to the large disused quarry at the head of the Cwm. At the end of our walk, we enjoyed a nice cup of tea and cake at the tea rooms (currently operating out of a caravan) at the house of Tyddyn Mawr near the lake dam, a very welcome end to our afternoon.
Better weather today with no rain (initially), lighter winds and occasional sunny spells. We headed south to the impressive Cadair Idris range, to climb one of the westerly satellite summits of Cadair Idris, Tyrrau Mawr (661 metres). Parking at the lovely Cregennen Lakes, the route initially heads west climbing high above the Mawddach estuary, with great views across to Barmouth, and out across Cardigan Bay.
After passing a couple of conifer plantations, we headed east up onto, and along the western end of the Cadair Idris range, crossing the summit of Craig-y-llyn and along to Tyrrau Mawr. There are great views of the major peak of Cadair Idris (Pen y Gadair) and across the Mawddach to the mountains to the north (Rhinogs). The visibility became a bit hazy in the afternoon, so the photos do not do the scenery justice.
From the summit of Tyrrau Mawr, we dropped down to join the Pony Path route descending from Cadair Idris summit, to take us back to the lane leading back towards Cregennen. At this point, the weather closed in and we got a good soaking on the long trudge back along the lane to the car. However, the damp end to the day did not spoil our overall enjoyment of this route over the rarely visited western end of the Cadair Idris range - we only saw two other walkers on this part of the route (although we saw several people descending on the Pony Path).
We are in Rhyd this week. The weather is a bit wet and windy, but seems to be slowly improving. Yesterday, we had a nice walk from Rhyd Ddu up into the Beddgelert forest. Today, we drove to Trefor and walked part of the Wales coast path towards Nefyn, going over the bwlch below Yr Eifl (564 metres), the highest point on the Llyn Peninsula. The going was heavy along the coast path, with strong westerly winds, and frequent squally showers, but between the showers, we enjoyed some great views along the Llyn and back towards Snowdonia.
We passed some wild goats on our walk. We headed back to Trefor after crossing Bwlch Yr Eifl, and considered clambering to the summit of Yr Eifl, but the strong winds and cloud-covered summit put us off. Of course, as we started our descent to Trefor, the clouds parted, the sun came out, and the summit of Yr Eifl was bathed in sunshine. Oh well, we'll have to come back on another day.
Peter and Lorraine, owners of Ty Uchaf since 2011. We will post occasionally items that may be of interest to our guests, past, present and future !