The Crib Goch Alternative

Since I was acutely aware that my fitness level was supremely substandard, I had a plan:  I’d arrive at Snowdon an hour or two before the rest of the guys, slowly make my way to the summit of Crib Goch ahead of them, take some photographs and some drone footage – and of course vlog the whole event.  So I got all my gear ready the night before, and was on my way at 05:15.

Crib Goch, Snowdon, North Wales

About 2 hours into my journey, I stopped to take a photograph of the sunrise.  It was at this point I realised my hiking boots were still on the rug in the living room waiting for me to put them in the car.  I’d come too far to turn around for my boots, so I took the decision to buy a pair of winter boots ready for the coming season, and my Salomon GTX could go into storage until next spring.  After a telephone call with my good friend, I re-tasked my sat nav for Betws-y-Coed where I’d wait until 09:00 for Cotswold Outdoor to open.

At the entrance to Cotswold Outdoor, there was a small crowd waiting for the doors to open, and it turned out I was wasn’t the only person who’d made a lengthy journey only to realise the all important boots were still at home!

The very pleasant staff helped me to choose a pair of Scarpa Pro GTX which looked great, and performed amazingly.  A fairly rigid (B2) boot worn on day of purchase for 8 hours’ walking and no blisters – I’m impressed.  Also got a 15% discount for my RSPB membership – result!

Llyn Llydaw, Snowdon

Arriving at Snowdon much later than planned, parking wasn’t available so I ended up parking in Llanberis.  My tardiness also meant I’d lost my head start on the rest of the guys, so we all set off together along the Pyg Track, and then took the trail up towards the Crib Goch ascent.

Sunburst, corpuscular rays, Crib Goch, Snowdon

We were making inroads into the ascent when I started to come unstuck – my poor level of fitness, fear of heights and to a degree the weight of camera gear I was hauling got the better of me and I started to flag.  I didn’t feel secure or nimble in the scrambles, and despite the support of the group I decided it was best for all that I descend and take the Pyg Track instead.  This decision made, I picked my way along the Pyg Track with the hordes taking photos of the amazing surroundings as I went.

With the walk over, we camped at the base of Tryfan and had a great evening of food and lots of drinks around the campfire, bundled up against the cold of the autumn night.

I didn’t get the vlog content, or make the journey I’d planned – but in the end I still had a great day in beautiful surroundings and spent a lot of time with some lovely people.  A vlog of the Crib Goch traverse is merely postponed until I return fitter and more confident – maybe next spring?

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