Snowdon, a challenge for any novice or experienced climber. Standing at 3,560 ft above sea level, there is no way of telling what will be in store for you as you climb nearer and nearer the summit. Not knowing how the weather will change, whether you will slip somewhere you never have before, or even sprain your ankle between two rocks and have to turn round just as you’re near the top.
One thing is for sure, it can become very unpredictable.
It was the 24th February, temperatures climbed to an unseasonable 17 degrees in Wales, surely too warm to climb a mountain right? Well that wasn’t going to stop me and my friends Sydney and Vicky. Equipped with sweets, energy drinks, water and all the essentials in our backpacks, we slowly made the ascent from the bottom. Not conquering Snowdon before, I had no idea what I had gotten myself into.
Advised by both my friends and staff at the Trespass store, I layered up ready for what the weather had to throw at me, especially at this ridiculous time in the morning. Leggings under my Craghopper trousers, t-shirt under a hoodie I had got in the sale and finished off with my faithful walking boots, I felt prepared, pumped and strong ready to go.
Walking slightly up hill, the sun beaming down on us like an interrogation lamp, I was wishing I’d never put these trousers on over my leggings. Doing a leg session on the Friday before was helping but with it, the thought that my thighs seem huge didn’t help! Feeling constricted with how far my pace was I had to take them off when we stopped to have a little break.
Upon seeing the first of the ponds up the mountain, we thought this could be a great place to stop. Unfortunately for me, being the awkward person I am, taking mt Craghoppers off was not the most straight forward of tasks as I couldn’t get them over my walking boots. Ugh! Off come the boots as well I suppose. Comfort regained, Percy Pigs and Nature Valley bars eaten, we headed off once more up the path. Unfortunately for me I still had no idea what I was in store for.
During the quiet, but breathless periods of the rest of the climb, my thoughts of what I am hoping to achieve in June and doing the Three Peaks swept over me. Being able to experience what I am getting myself into first hand worried me a bit with how hard it’s going to be. Time to get that thought out of my head and just keep trucking on. Just keep positive, light-hearted, and just have fun aye. Not being the most stable person on her feet anyway, I thought best keep my mind on the task ahead. Especially when I nearly cracked my head open on a slippery rock in the middle of a running stream.
Finally being able to conquer the cobbled staircase of Hell, (not actually sure that it’s called that, but I see it that way), a bit of scrambling steep and rocky heights and steep paths we were on the last leg to the top. It was in our reach!!
During the last part, our thoughts turned to the euphoria of what we had just achieved. I know that my friends had already done this a number of times and are used to the route etc, but being able to achieve something so great on a day like today was incredible. Then the thought of achievement slowly turned to the realisation of ‘oh dear we have to get down the mountain’ hit us. To be honest it seemed the hardest part as having to walk, plus balance ourselves down hill was tough on our legs and above all our dignity.
What an amazing feat achieved, just what we needed to do on a Sunday! Just shows that we are all stronger than we think we are, and sometimes we just need that extra push to achieve our goals.