Saturday, 14 June 2014
Trail 100 #39
We ate lunch in the new car park at the end of the valley and set off walking just after half past two. Aran Fawddwy (2969ft/905m) looks impressive, a sharp ridge rising to nearly 3000 feet. We had past it on Friday night driving to Barmouth, and it was clearly visible from the top of Maesglase (2218ft/676m).
There are two popular routes: down the ridge from the Southern end of Lake Bala; and our route via Drysgol. Both routes are long and, with our tired legs, the ascent was punishing, the first two miles a relentless climb up a good straight path rising from the valley of Hengwm to reach the ridge.
From this point onwards Aran Fawddwy is a joy. The path curves over a gentle grass covered ridge and the view opens up: first revealing the Aran ridge itself with the little lake (Creiglyn Dyfi) nestling below the crags of Aran Benllyn (2904ft/885m); and then, as you reach the stone scattered top, the whole panorama of the Snowdonian mountains.
Bathed in evening sunshine we had the top of this popular mountain to ourselves.
It was now late, and we had dinner booked, so we marched down an increasingly boggy path with rotting duck boards covering the worst. The view to the south dominated by the spiky crown of Cadair Idris (2930ft/893m).
Together, today’s two walks were the longest, furthest and highest of the year so far: over 14 miles (23km), just short of 5000 feet (1500m) of climbing and over eight hours on our feet. A steaming hot bath and dinner were waiting at our hotel.
From the car park at SH852188.