The weekend turned out to be a bit of a Welsh special!
With no plans fixed for Saturday on Friday night, a text from Paul Williams and Chris Ryan had me struggling to avoid a hilly early ride. 7am pick up and over to loggerheads to tackle World's End, The Old Horseshoe and Bwlch Penbarras in preparation for Wasdale Half X in September. It was chilly with temps struggling to find double figures and a soaking just before the 2nd big climb failed to brighten the mood. But 75km banked and 1600m of steep climbing was a good start to the weekend. Cheers for dragging me out guys!
Sunday was an even later call. Waking up at 8, I grabbed some food and kit and headed off to Snowdon. I've never been up and in my head just knew I had to get there, decide on a path and get up. No planning required! On arrival, I eventually found a parking space at the bottom of the Watkins Path. It's a slightly longer route to the summit at 4 miles, but offers a vertical Km of ascent. It would be a good test for the legs, and to tackle the day without company. The final 300m of the climb was a scramble and got the adrenaline up, but I made it to the top in 1 hour 55 minutes. Now with an idea of how tough it was, I opted for a loop down the Miners Track and back up the Pyg Track which seemed to be the route most people were taking. 700m down and back up, I still felt strong though the weather was turning in with misty drizzle clouding the summit. I layered up and prepared to descend the tricky top section of the Watkins Path. Maybe it was the fact I couldn't see down the mountain, but it seemed much easier and less scary on the descent. I made it back to the car with 27km and 1800m of ascent and 1800m of descent in the legs.
So now for some perspective and to beg for your pennies! The smallest day of the ETR is 22km with 1975m of ascent and 1820m of descent! The second day is 3450m of ascent and 1750m of descent! Needless to say, I can't comprehend doing what I did yesterday plus more, six days on the bounce, and at altitude! It's going to be some challenge!
Please don't forget to donate to my fundraising for two great charities using the link below.