/ Pen Y Fan conditions

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stujamo - on 06 Feb 2013
Hi,
Planning to walk PYF on Saturday,possibly from the Storey Arms,or possibly from further north.
Does anyone have any info on the conditions,and whether or not walking crampons/mountain axe would be prudent?
Thanks in advance,
Stu
tipsy - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to stujamo: Heavy Snow has been forecast there this week, so I think it would be sensible. But at the end of the day, whatever the weather is doing - the season is winter. If in doubt in the hills, take winter kit with you.
Run_Ross_Run - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to stujamo:

Take them just in case. The good thing about the route up from the S arms is that you can bypass most, if not all , of the ice if you're winter wise.

The path back down from windy ridge to the toilet bloc is notoriously icey so take care if you use it, but again most can be bypassed. It does tend to bank out under heavy snow (4ft deep) but can be skirted round.

The bit that always gets me is the 10 mtr cobbled ramp down to the river from the toilets. I do my Bambie impression every time i have to use it.

I was up there when it dumped it down a few weeks ago and tbh crampons would have been more of a hinderance (nice to have in the pack though).
Sleepy_trucker - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to stujamo:

May see you up there! Having a bit of a think about it at the moment, It's a bit of a trek from here so I'd normally wildcamp and make a weekend of it but carrying winter gear plus camping gear's putting me off a bit at the moment so it's looking like a 400 mile round trip for a day's walking or try to find a campsite nearby that's open.
stujamo - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to stujamo: Thanks for the replies guys-pretty much as I'd thought,another opinion is always useful though (IMHO)
Cody - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to stujamo: I was up there last Sat am. Main tourist path was clear until around Windy Ridge with snow/ice on all the summits. A few small ice flows on the main path, but nothing needing any winter gear.

Was cold last couple days (Hay) and the summits probably got a good bit of snow, 1/2 of which I imagine blew off overnight.

A few photos from Sat: http://codyduncan.com/blog/2013/02/brecon-beacons-pen-y-fan-winter-sunrise/
Welsh Kate - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to stujamo:
If you have microspikes or something similar and just intend to walk rather than climb, you'll be better off with them rather than crampons tbh.
Rob Exile Ward on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to Welsh Kate: Personally I wouldn't think crampons are ever necessary on Pen Y Fan/Corn Ddu, unless you're looking for practice and/or climbing. An axe is probably worth while but they are walks, after all. You can always get down short icy bits on your a*se - not elegant, but effective!
stujamo - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to Cody: Enjoyed looking at your photos Cody,I may post 1 or 2,but doubt that they'll look like yours! Thanks
stujamo - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to Rob Exile Ward: Thanks Rob,we shan't be climbing,(not recovered from my summer antics yet).But was keen to find out about conditions underfoot.
As always,when I post,UKC/H is a big help.That,or my posts are so boring they don't attract any crazies :O)
Welsh Kate - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:
There are a couple of places - coming down off Fan Fawr, going up the Neuadd Ridge from the reservoir - where crampons - or microspikes - can make life a whole lot easier and less worrying, if there's hard-frozen snow lying. The a*se crampon's not really an option in those places under those circumstances!
Otherwise, I agree.
stujamo - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to Welsh Kate: Noted Kate,and thanks :O)
Kyle Warlow - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to stujamo:

I was up there today....

Main path up to Bwlch Duwynt is clear. No snow. Small icy patches but easily seen and avoided. Not sure about the path that starts besides the Story Arms Centre.

The path down the other side (Craig Cwm Sere) was lethal however. Lots of verglas on the rocks so we stuck to the grass.

Crampons and axes definitely not need. Things may change by saturday though.
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stujamo - on 06 Feb 2013
In reply to K.W.: Thanks K,that's helpful.We were planning either a longish route starting at Craig Cwm Sere,or a shorter one from the Storey Arms.

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