I was home at the unusually early hour of 4pm after work on Friday 20th June
2008. It must have been something special for me to miss the weekly staff
five-a-side football, and it was - a Snowdonia pass for Jimmy and I!
The initial haul was steep but short, and we emerged from the wood on the
east end of the ridge, 1km away from the summit, which is right on the western
end. We followed the direct distinct path towards the summit, which scrambles up
and over a few lumps before curling around to the final approach.
The summit was bathed in bright evening sunshine, and the views over
Porthmadog, Tremadog Bay, the Lleyn Peninsular and back towards the main
mountains of Snowdonia were stunning. We had carried 80m CW/SSB capability with
us, knowing that the potential audience for a VHF-only activation would be
small. However, several stations in the Porthmadog area were active on the band,
so we opted for the easy option, thus increasing our chances of reaching the
Youth Hostel before reception closed!
For the descent, we followed a faint line through the grass nearer to the
cliff edges along the north of the ridge, and this gave easier walking without
the ups and downs of the ridge line. Well for three-quarters of it anyway! The
last bit necessitated some awkward ankle positioning on steeply sloping spongy
ground, but we were safely back at the car by 9pm. So far, so good, with our
first activation, first point and another of Jimmy's "Uniques catch-up" summits
in the bag.
We arrived at Snowdon Ranger Youth Hostel around half-an-hour later. There
weren't any tins of food or Pot Noodles on sale at reception with which I could
self-cater for my tea, so I settled on a bottle of ale instead. Jimmy had been
given an early meal on arriving home from school, so it was not a major problem.