Thursday, 18 August 2011

Day One - Caernarfon to Rhyd Ddu, 12 miles.

What a difference 17 kilos make. What would usually be a routine 12 miles turned out to be pretty hard work with a full pack, on my legs more than my shoulders. And my slight calf strain felt a bit less slight by the end.

Anyway, enough moaning because it's always lovely to be in Rhyd Ddu, possibly the finest spot in Snowdonia that isn't the top of a mountain. It has a beautiful lake (Llyn Cwellyn), a good view of the rubbish side of Snowdon and, most importantly, is the start of the finest walk in Wales OR POSSIBLY EVEN THE WORLD, the Nantlle Ridge. Oddly enough the first time I came here was only 8 or 9 years ago, with the girls on the steam railway which was being restored. This was as far as it went (it now goes from Caernarfon through Beddgelert to Porthmadog). It was quite a grim, cold day so we virtually got straight back on the train back to Caernarfon. There seemed to be nothing here except a few houses, but this was not the case because we totally missed the Cwellyn Arms where I am at this moment.

Actually I'm being distracted by the only other people in here, a family to my left. This is mainly because they are serious mollycoddlers. Mum has just checked her son's meal to check that it isn't too hot, which would be fine if he wasn't at least 12!

So, the Cwellyn Arms, a great little place with good beer, good food and a campsite which is a bloody MILE away. I walked past it 20 minutes before getting here (not knowing it was the pub's), registered and was sent straight back. This means that including a further trip each way to eat 4 miles have been added to my meticulously organised itinerary.

Dead animal of the day - a mole. I studied the mole for quite a while, wondering whether I'd ever actually seen one before in the (rotting) flesh. I'd seen them in cartoons, and seen their hills, but in real life (or death) I wasn't sure. The only conclusion I could reach was that cartoon moles are very realistic.

The family to my left have gone up in my estimation due to their insistence on their children using their knives and forks properly and not putting too much in their mouths at once. Respect!

Oh and the walk itself, well because I don't start the coast path till I get to Porthmadog tomorrow I had to make it up using my very old unrevised OS map. Some of it was a success and some of it wasn't. The successful bits were along paths and bridleways and the unsuccessful bits were along main roads. I didn't plan main roads, I planned paths, but they were either overgrown, didn't exist or had been restored into the steam railway line. I had to run across a crossing in front of a train to take its photo. The driver was not happy and gave me a toot. The weather was great by the way.

Well one more pint of Cottage Brewery DC-10 before bed. Or should I say before mat. Decent steak and kidney pie tonight, but only a puff pastry lid. Meal rating 7/10.

-- Posted from my iPhone

1 comment:

  1. Did you actually run across the train track?! The number of times you've been to danger point! (I think that's what it's called) Hope you're having a good time and we saw a mole stuck in the Tiger Car wash just outside Mold.
    Love you xx

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