Bethesda to Capel Curig, Snowdonia
Saturday 22 October 2016
Once again back in Snowdonia, this time with a group of friends so we had two cars. This gave us an excellent chance to do a linear walk (with a little scrambling!), so we started from Bethesda to walk back to our bunkhouse in Capel Curig. It was a pretty big day, that took us about 7 hours, with only a couple of short stops.
First up was new ground for all of us, Cwm Pen-Llafar, which feels like it gets comparatively few visitors compared with much of North Snowdonia. The cliffs at the end, Ysgolion Duon appear formidable and were partially lost in cloud at first. As we got nearer, the cloud lifts and we try to find our intended route onwards - a scramble up Grib Lem (as named on the OS map, but it often seems to be called Crib Lem on the internet). A couple of waterfalls are visible between Cwmglas Bach and Cwmglas Mawr. We ascended steeply by the left hand waterfall, into a scree where there where some little paths. After a bit of a climb, a cairn marked a path traversing out back towards Cwm Pen-Llafar. Once on the ridge, the scramble of the Grib-Lem spur is obvious. I really enjoyed this, anything I found too difficult was avoidable by looking around for an easier route. But as always with scrambling, what one person enjoys, another might find terrifying.
All too soon we were at the top of Carnedd Dafydd, where we walked the broad ridge over to Carnedd Llwelyn, the cloud skimming our heads much of the time. The ridge walking continued along down to Bwlch Eryl Farchog, back up to Pen yr Helgi Du, finally down to Bwlch y Tri Marchog. From here, we broadly followed a fence down through some boggy areas, until we reached a much better track near Llyn Cowlyd which took us down to the A5 road.
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