Monday, 17 October 2016

Moelwyns Weekend Meet

This probably turned out to be one of the best weekend meets of the year yet only four members (Ken, Ewan, Chris M and Yvonne) attended. 
It was raining during the Friday night but by morning the nearby south facing crags were already drying.  Chris and Yvonne fancied climbing on Craig y Clippau but somehow lost their way in the slate heaps and landed up at Craig y Wrysgan where they climbed the famed Honeysuckle Corner amongst other routes.   
Meanwhile Ken and Ewan donned on their big boots to climb the seven pitch v. diff. route of Slick.  This was a lovely varied route offering some quite tricky old-fashioned climbing from time to time.  After lunch they changed climbing technique, putting on the rock shoes to climb "Orange Outang" an 80 metre hard severe with rather sparse protection. 

There are many eating out possibilities in Blaenau Ffestiniog (pubs, cafes and Chinese take-away) two miles from the hut at Tanygrisau  but we decided to cook a meal and eat in the hut going out to the local friendly pub (the Kings Head) fifteen minutes walk away later.  We soon got bored with games of dominos so the landlord produced a game of draughts which was more exciting.  All of us had forgotten how to play this game but after a false start placing the pieces on all the squares as though we were playing chess, the locals came over and put us right.    
It rained during the night and the hills were still covered in cloud in the morning.  Ken suggested a low level walk from the hut into the Vale of Ffestiniog.  The walk followed close to the Ffestiniog railway track but then departed as the railway entered a tunnel   Our trek over the hill brought us to old rail embankments and a tunnel which was abandoned when the Tanygrissau reservoir was built and the pump storage scheme with the nuclear power station of Trawsfynnod.   We heard a train whistle in the distance so headed for the loop-the-loop new railway track at Dduallt built to gain height to avoid the reservoir.  Well worth the wait eating early snacks in the sunshine, we were rewarded with a first hand view of the train and its six coaches thundering round the bend before the loops and a second view as it crossed the bridge looping over itself.  Our walk then took us westward to a path junction which returned us to Dduallt station.

The continuation of the walk took us into the forest region of Clogwyn y Geilfr and the ravine of the Afon Goedo.  The walk followed the river in part past waterfalls and then crossed into open moorland for the return to Tanygrisau.  I'd heard before tales that the Vale of Ffestiniog was lovely and they were correct.