WEEKLY PHOTO: Last light on Snowdon, North Wales

Over New Year there were a few short days when the highest hills in Snowdonia turned white with snow. Armed with crampons and an ice axe I headed out to enjoy the conditions. Simon and I enjoyed several days out in the hills. On this particular day we made the most of the shorten December daylight hours and hitched up to Pen y Pass. We climbed Snowdon’s Gribin Ridge, in between Snowdon’s summit and Lliwedd and then descended to the base of the South Ridge, which we climbed to Snowdon’s summit.

This photo was taken late in the afternoon from the South Ridge of Snowdon looking southwest towards Moel Hebog and the Nantlle ridge. The South Ridge is what I like to call the connoisseurs route up Snowdon, away from the crowds it always provides a pleasant outing.

Since last Spring I have been living at the base of Snowdon in the village of Nant Peris; Snowdon was my home peak. This meant that we were one of the privileged few who can walk home after a day on the mountain. By descending the Llanberis path, which runs parallel to the 100 year old railway line, we got quickly get below the clouds. Where the footpath and railway line cross and the train stops at Clogwyn Station, we dropped off the path to make a hurried descent into Cwm Hetiau; it was now late in the day. Cwm Hetiau means Valley of the Hats and is so called because the Victorians take the trains to the top of Snowdon in the open train carriages would hit a partly windy stop on their journey at around Clogwyn Station and the gusts relieve the finely dressed passengers of their hats. Entrepreneurial locals would climb into Cwm Hetiau, where these hats had come to rest, and collect them, probably to be sold back to their owners once they got back to Llanberis. Now Cwm Hetiau was our route home. It was dark by the time we made it to the road which we followed into Nant Peris and a restoring cup of tea.

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