So who thought it was a good idea to pair up Moel Hebog GW/NW-014 with Moel-ddu GW/NW-045? Several - but we didn't - thank goodness. We ran out of time after Moel Hebog on Monday, and found that Moel-ddu today (Wednesday 30th August 2017) was more than sufficient for a day. Fair enough we had a lateish start due to a "lie-in" after Y Garn GW/NW-004 and Elidir Fawr GW/NW-005 yesterday, and we were done today by just after 5pm - but it was still more than enough for a day's walking.
There was a long and in parts boggy walk along the old tramway to the quarry, followed by a couple of hellishly steep and slippery sections to almost scramble up. I wasn't looking forward to descending them but I just about coped. The ascent to the summit was one of those where you think you are just never going to get there! After every corner and false horizon, it just looked like there was more and more still to climb.
After the steep and scrambly section, there was a bit of distance to cover on a much kinder gradient, but without any consistent or simple terrain on which to walk. So it was slow and energy-sapping progress being made - by me at least. Jimmy, as usual, was considerable ahead of me at every stage.
The ladder stile over the dry stone wall was the indicator that we were very close to the summit. Thank goodness. I had found this quite a demanding walk, and the thought of pairing it with Moel Hebog GW/NW-014 struck me as somewhere towards the distant end of the scale from "fanciful" to "ridiculous"! My perception was no doubt clouded by my physical fatigue from the previous day's big expedition on the Glyder range.
At least we could now settle down and relax in the glorious sunshine for a while, enjoying magnificent Snowdonia views. It was nice to be back on HF again, and 20m CW produced a long list of callers for me to work through.
It was an easy activation for Jimmy on 2m FM too. Sufficiently rested and refreshed (the dual purpose of the SOTA activating component of a day's mountaineering!), we packed up and got on with our return walk. We knew this wouldn't be trivial, and weren't looking forward to the muddy scramble and steep narrow scree path sections of the descent.
As it was, nothing gave us much trouble, and we were soon on kinder gradients and simpler walking, while still having to exercise care around the boggier parts of the tramway path back to the parking spot. It was a swelteringly hot afternoon, and more than ever, we were looking forward to our showers back at the youth hostel!
The day concluded by heading back up to the Cwellyn Arms for supper and beer. Simon G4TJC popped in again, this time accompanied by his wife Helen M6HMK. The weather forecast for the following day was poor, so we decided to restrict ourselves to trivial summits like Mynydd Bodafon GW/NW-071 and Great Orme GW/NW-070. Firstly though, we headed back out in the car to try to find a parking spot with a favourable take-off to the East, to attempt to listen to my other son Liam's weekly radio show. This was due to be broadcast on Upload Radio at 10pm, with one of the transmissions coming from the Liverpool/Chester/Wrexham DAB multiplex. We eventually managed to receive the signal at the far (East) end of Pen-y-Pass.