Snowdon Horseshoe Nant Peris Reviews
Great ridge walk - for those without vertigo Nov 22, 2010
Snowdon is only one of two mountains (as far as I know, the other being Cairn Gorm in Scotland) in Great Britain whose summit can be reached by train. There are also numerous paths that call for no outstanding ability - just fitness. if you want one of these, I suggest the PYG track, which runs near enough to the hoseshoe and return by hte Miners' track to your starting point. This is Pen-y-Pass, the top point of the road from Capel Curig to Llanberis. Pen-y-Pass is also the top starting and finishing point of the Horseshoe walk.
This requires a minimal amount of scrambling but it does require a clear head as it includes a spectacular narrow ridge between the peaks of Crib Goch and Crib y Ddisgl. When I was taking students to the area, I always warned them about this and let them choose their route accordingly. Sadly, some overestimated themselves and needed help along the ridge. Once I found myself helping one on each side. A colleague came up behind us and I breethed a real sigh of relief as he passed us, put down his pack and returned - until he took out his camera, took a photo and hastened on!! With colleagues like this --- ----- -------?
If you have got a head for heights, you won't find a better ridge walk south of Glencoe but there is a snag. Sometimes on a fine day, which is of course what you want, you have to wait in a queue before you can start the traverse of the ridge. It is the only place in Great Britain where I have experienced this.
From Crib y Ddisgl to Yr Wyddfa (the summit of Snowdon) is little more than a stroll but don't underestimate the Llewydds that form the other side of the Horseshoe. They are not anything like crib Goch and they are very scenic but once I listened to two very mature students who had been slow up to the top but assured me that they would be quite fast going down. The result was that darkness fell before we reached the bottom.
Given that the first part of this (to Yr Wyddfa) only marks the start of the 14 peaks walk (review), the horseshoe should be treated seriously and avoided in wintry conditions unless you are very proficient and experienced. When the Youth Hostel at Pen-y-pass used to be a pub, we once sat in one bar hearing the weping of a girl in another whose fiancee had died in a mountain accident.
Enjoy but take care!
Part of the list Wonderful Wales
Part of the list Mountain walks in the UK
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