Sunday, 15 June 2014
Trail 100 #40
Our base for this weekend was the LLwyndu Farmhouse in Barmouth, where we ate a filling breakfast before setting out to climb the most famous mountain in this part of Wales.
The location of Cadair Idris (2930ft/893m) rising from sea level above the Mawddach Estuary is an impressive sight, but we decided to climb it from the other side, starting at Minffordd. The first part of the walk is a steep stepped ascent following a stream through woods that provided shelter from the sun.
At the fork in the path we turned left and headed towards Cwm Cau quickly arriving at the small lake surrounded by the huge cliff walls on three sides. In this sheltered hollow the water was flat smooth with a perfect reflection of the blue sky. From there the path climbs to reach the ridge.
It is this ridge walk that makes this route so superb. The other routes up miss this spectacular view with the summit (Penygadair) clearly visible as the goal providing motivation for the climb. Even this same route in the opposite direction would miss the joy of this climb.
And then the crowded summit, where we stopped for lunch and enjoyed the view over the sea and down to Barmouth with its distinctive railway bridge crossing the estuary.
From there the path descends over a rock strewn grass field before rising gently to Mynydd Moel.
The descent was by a steep path covered in loose rock and stone, a difficult surface to walk on which made us slow, we felt sorry for those we passed climbing this path. We stopped at the tea room for a drink.
From the car park at SH732115.