Sunday April 11th
I woke several times in the night, still with a migraine. Although I’ve suffered migraines all my life, it is very unusual to have one for 24 hours. I started to worry that it might be something more serious like a brain tumour.
Morning at Llyn Llugwy
In the tent, the night time temperature didn’t fall below 6c, although it was probably lower outside. Again I felt a bit cold, so I put my LIM Barrier smock on. With some relief I felt my migraine starting to ease. By the time I rose at around 7am, it was a lot better and after breakfast I took the last of the ibuprofen. My previous doctor told me the best thing for migraines is two paracetemol and one ibuprofen tablet. After trying everything else, this is still the best treatment I’ve found, but I’m always careful about taking ibuprofen.
The group that was camping on the wall of the dam left quite early, so by the time I had finished sorting my stuff I had the place to myself. I took the chance to have a look around and take some photos. The group had pitched in the best place with good flat ground, although it was quite exposed if there was a strong wind.
By 9.30am I was off. Last year, I remember the climb up Craig Llugwy being a bit of a pull. To my amazement, it only took about half an hour and I didn’t feel particularly tired. As I went higher, the wind freshened, so I put on some layers. Just before the last climb through a boulder field, I stopped for a bit of sustenance.
A quick break
Crossing Bwlch Cyfryw drum, I encountered a few modest snow patches, but not serious enough to use my Kahtoola Microspikes, which was slightly disappointing. I took the final climb up Carnedd Llewelyn steadily as I didn’t want to generate too much sweat in my hard shell jacket. I think I will be reverting to Paramo in the future as for 90% of the time it’s the best system.
The ridge to Carnedd Llewelyn
I made the summit just after noon. The whole ascent had been quite leisurely. There was a stiff cold wind and I sheltered behind one of the summit rocks and ate lunch. I tried a bit of tripod photography, but the wind blew the camera and tripod over. Fortunately the camera landed on the LCD screen, which was only slightly scratched.
View south-east from Carnedd Llewelyn
Although I met several people on the top, they all seemed oddly reluctant to exchange greetings. As it was cold, I didn’t hang around for too long. My original plan had been to walk the ridge to Drum, but the cold wind persuaded me to cut down to the ridge between Melynllyn and Llyn Eigiau. I put on my gaiters, as I remembered last year it was very wet on this descent. I was glad I did, as I had to cross several snow patches and some marshy ground.
Lower down the wind became lighter and the sun became stronger, making it pleasantly warm. I met I very nice couple going in the opposite direction and had a chat. Their friendliness was a contrast with the frostiness of the fellow walkers on Carnedd Llewelyn.
My intention had been to camp at Melynllyn but it didn’t look very inviting and the ground would probably be quite wet. I was also intrigued as to where the path I was on would meet the track below. I continued to almost the end of the ridge until the path dropped on the western side to meet the land rover track.
Back at Maeneira
I went back to the car to ditch a few bits and pieces and pick up a new gas cylinder as the one I had been using was almost spent. I headed back to the delights of Maeneira. When I arrived it was like a summer’s day. The Scarp went up quickly as I was now used to pitching it. I had a quick wash in the stream before dinner, which was Pasta Provence. The sunshine flooded through the tent door. It was a truly special moment to a trip that had no real purpose other than to have a wander and do a bit of wild camping (and to test my Scarp, of course).
Monday 12th April
The night was a bit colder and when I got out of the tent there was a light frost. This time there was some condensation in the tent, but nowhere near as much as I have suffered with other tents. I ate most of the remaining bits and pieces for breakfast before packing the tent.
Back at the car park I arrived just as group of youngsters and their instructor were getting out of a minibus. I waited until they had departed before a quick change of clothes and then home.
A frosty Scarp
Even though I had a migraine on the Saturday, I enjoyed my little wander. I didn’t use a map at all, although I carried one. It was nice to just have a wander without trying to do serious distances. All in all it was a very relaxing time.