UKC

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Neil Anderson - on 09 Dec 2017
Anyone have latest road and access conditions please.....
Ffat Boi - on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to Neil Anderson:

roads are fine
TobyA on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to Ffat Boi:

> roads are fine

That's good to hear - yesterday the police were asking people to avoid the A55 due to snow related accidents. A quick google found this http://trafficcameras.uk/a55/ it does look like snow that fell along the north coast of Wales at least has mainly melted away already.
dmbishop - on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to TobyA:

Hey everyone.
Does anyone know the state of nameless cwm.
Thank you.
TobyA on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to dmbishop:

People are report from the top of Snowdon today that lots of snow but turf not frozen even very high, and that supports the BMC Cwm Idwal turf monitoring https://www.thebmc.co.uk/idwal Lots of reports from the Lakes saying the same. Maybe tomorrow is a day for a walk but not for climbing.
dmbishop - on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to TobyA:

Thanks. Really appreciate the response. It's a long way for me to travel.

And thanks for the bmc link.
richlan - on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to TobyA:
I concur, had a run up helvellyn from swirls then over to whiteside, raise and sticks pass, not a lot of snow about and pretty soft underfoot, gullies in brown cove crags look empty, still people tramping around with crampons on, who knows why as fell shoes were more than adequate even down lower man.
Post edited at 18:27
JackM92 - on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to TobyA:

Out camping last night and turf partially frozen at 300ish meters. Depends so much on slope aspect.
1
geoff b on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Did the Cwm Glas horseshoe today (Crib Goch & Crib y Ddysgl). Quite a bit of snow in places like the Cyrn Las flank where yesterday's wind deposited it, but less on the ridges (e.g. Crib Goch), such that we didn't need crampons for most of the day. Turf is still damp & not yet frozen, snow is largely dry (as is the rock) & powdery, ice is beginning to form in places but not enough to climb anything yet. It all needs a good thaw/freeze cycle. Snowed up rock routes might go, if the snow hasn't been blown off & I think Detox (left of Reade's Route) got climbed today. Blizzards forecast tomorrow & freeze/thaw subsequently, so will be worth a visit later in the week. Hope that helps folks.
dmbishop - on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to geoff b:

Yes it really does. Thanks a lot ????????????
dmbishop - on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to geoff b:

Sorry that was ment to be a smiley face emoji but came out as question marks. I ment it in a genuine way. Thanks
Alex Riley on 09 Dec 2017
In reply to JackM92:

Jack where were you camping? I was out in the Carneddau yesterday and up Crib Coch today and the turf wasn't really frozen anywhere. Bits of ice forming in places and some rime on summits but not much more.
JackM92 - on 10 Dec 2017
In reply to Alex Riley:

Near Llanberis. Walked up to Glyder Fach today but didn't climb. And a lot of the turf was frozen but equally a lot wasn't.
Alex Riley on 10 Dec 2017
In reply to JackM92:

I didn't come across any frozen turf, not for lack of looking. Are you sure it didn't just have a frosty coating?
kevin stephens - on 10 Dec 2017
In reply to anyone:
is there enough snow for anything to be skiable?

Neil Anderson - on 10 Dec 2017
In reply to kevin stephens:

Snowing all day with a lot of wind blown snow filling in upto thigh depth on Tryfan.

Due to drifting a lot of heather and rock protruding. Probably some scope though to find ascent / descent lines
tipsy - on 11 Dec 2017
In reply to kevin stephens:

I was thinking of heading up from cardiff to explore on Tuesday so let me know if anyone finds anything.
dkilner - on 11 Dec 2017
In reply to tipsy:
I'm also thinking of heading up (from cardiff)early tomorrow morning. Cold night and day ahead of us and pictures of Snowdonia are looking wind scoured...good for freezing out that ground. Fingers and arms crossed.
Tipsy have messaged you.
Post edited at 09:30
jas wood - on 11 Dec 2017
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Anyone know if ice is starting to build mid level?
geoff b on 12 Dec 2017
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Hi folks, conditions are looking excellent for the next few days as the forecast has thaw/freeze oscillating nicely. We were climbing on Clogwyn Du today; there was snow on the ground from 300m, ice was visibly forming on the Cwm Idwal routes but probably not enough to be climbable yet. Ground (turf) is not frozen until 850m but exposed turf is rock hard & there's ice forming in lower Cwm Cneifion; the routes on the flanks of the cwm have formed (Nameless Face, Tower Slabs etc) & saw traffic today. Clogwyn Du is in excellent condition; Hidden Gully, Cleft Gully, Manx Wall, Pillar Chimney & Left Hand Y Gully all had ascents today and are in great condition. Furthermore it started snowing at 2.30pm & accumulated quickly enough to form a cornice above Easy Gully in 2 hours! It's raining in 'Beris now, so potentially there's going to be a lot more snow up there. Lastly, the path from Idwal was unpleasantly icy at 5pm which is kind of good I guess!
Misha - on 12 Dec 2017
In reply to geoff b:
Thanks, great update. Any thoughts on Ysgolion Duon? Probably not quite there if turf isn't frozen until 850m (think the crag base is a bit lower but can't quite remember) but a few more days will do it. Bit of a thaw overnight but that could actually be a good thing as you say.
geoff b on 12 Dec 2017
In reply to Misha:

Ha! I half expected to see you on the cliff today Misha. Ysgolion Duon might be a good bet by the end of the week, it really depends on how warm it is tonite as this front moves through. It should stay freezing all week above 800m (according to MWIS) and on Friday it has it cooling again, so they might be a good bet at the weekend. Mwynhewch dude.
wolf.leeb - on 12 Dec 2017
In reply to geoff b:
Concur.. weekend looks good atm.
clogwyn du should survive but I wouldn’t bet on much else.
Post edited at 20:38
Misha - on 12 Dec 2017
In reply to geoff b:
I’m locked in an office Mon - Fri. Made a snowman yesterday lunchtime though. Looks like it’s warming up on Sunday... although Clogwyn LH would still be ok and depending when the warm front hits the mixed might still be ok up there with an early start. We shall see!
Post edited at 22:29
TobyA on 12 Dec 2017
In reply to Misha:

Have you got anyone to climb with at the weekend Misha? I'm hoping to get something done on Saturday...
Misha - on 13 Dec 2017
In reply to TobyA:
Yes, plans are afoot...
Ffat Boi - on 13 Dec 2017
In reply to Neil Anderson:

It`s all gone, no snow or Ice anymore

mrphilipoldham - on 13 Dec 2017
In reply to Ffat Boi:

Well that's not entirely true is it? Plenty lurking low down beneath the cloud base still!

http://snowdon.webcam/archive/snowdon1-20171213-111003-153898-orig.jpg
geoff b on 13 Dec 2017
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Unfortunately heavy rain & warmer temperatures did strip much of the snow cover last night. However it was sleeting in 'Beris by 5pm & that means snow higher up. Temperatures are also set to drop again over the next 3 days (MWIS has -3C at 900m) so there's still hope for Friday & the weekend.
Pay Attention - on 14 Dec 2017
In reply to geoff b:

Is there any more recent news on Snowdonia conditions?
I may take my old school axes instead of the tools.
A snow gully would be as good for the morale as a WI 4.
Almost as good ....
mrphilipoldham - on 15 Dec 2017
In reply to Pay Attention:

Good ice up on Clogwyn Ddu yesterday, with a mix of partially consolidated snow and some not. Fine for step kicking en-route but not overly fun!
Pay Attention - on 15 Dec 2017
In reply to mrphilipoldham:

Many thanks for the update, mrphilipoldham

YHS
geoff b on 16 Dec 2017
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Excellent conditions on Clogwyn Du again today & great to see so many folk making the journey up here to enjoy them. Ice was more 'plastic' & there was more rime than earlier in the week. Hidden Gully, Cleft Gully, Travesty (Direct?), Pillar Chimney, L-H Y Gully, R-H Y Gully & Golden Girl Ali all saw ascents; L-H Y was apparently in super condition. Unfortunately incoming warm weather tomorrow looks like it's all over until after Christmas.
kimma - on 17 Dec 2017
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Hello all,

Heading up to Snowdonia for the week. Was thinking of doing the Snowdon horseshoe tomorrow, as the weather looks best. Any update on conditions? Particularly Crib Goch

Have done it a number of times at other times of year, but don't have and winter kit with us.

Thanks.
Kim
GerM - on 17 Dec 2017
In reply to kimma:

I'd say whatever anyone says, they'd only be guessing.

My thoughts are it could depend a lot on what exactly has gone on today, but there is a good chance that there may still be substantail patches of snow around, given how much was still around yesterday.

Crib Goch may well be snow free, given today's rain, and my guess would be it is the area least likely to cause issues. But could be covered in verglas by tomorrow morning, making it potentially dangerous.

The area most likely to be dangerous at a guess is starting from Snowdon toward Lliwedd. Descending direct to Blwch y Saethau, or following the top of the Watking could be a nightmare if snow, even soft snow persists in the area.

The fact that most of the usual escape options may well be under well compacted snow also complicates matters.

It could be in wet summer conditions, or there might be bits of substantial white slipperyness.

Unless anyone has seen it all today, and it is definitely snow free, I'd be careful about going for it without any winter kit.
kimma - on 17 Dec 2017
In reply to GerM:

Thanks, this is useful. Think we'll do something shorter tomorrow and see later in the week. I see also that Play y Brenin does hire out winter kit, which I didn't know previously.

jas wood - on 03 Jan 2018
In reply to kimma:

Anyone know what the state of play is around the higher crags as it's starting to cool?

Any ice remaining around or total re-build.
SebCa - on 03 Jan 2018
In reply to jas wood:

I drove down Llanberis Pass today, looked pretty bare to be honest...
JackM92 - on 04 Jan 2018
In reply to SebCa:

Out walking today and even high up in wind so strong it blew me over there was no need to wear gloves. So very very warm and soggy right now.
Neil Anderson - on 06 Jan 2018
In reply to jas wood:

Reports on state of water ice build up with this easterly freeze would be appreciated..... normally takes 4 or 5 day’s to bring a few classics into play.
2
ianstevens - on 06 Jan 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

> Reports on state of water ice build up with this easterly freeze would be appreciated..... normally takes 4 or 5 day’s to bring a few classics into play.

Then you may want to wait 4 or 5 days before going to look.
6
geoff b on 07 Jan 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Super cold out on the hills today with a bitter East wind. A smattering of snow from 800m upwards it but didn't look like enough to climb anything, unless you're keen to scratch around on rock. Pools of water and turf frozen solid above 800m, so lines dependent on that medium might be a good bet over the next week as the forecast suggests it's going to stay cold.
geoff b on 09 Jan 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Out in Cwm Idwal & across the Glyder Fawr plateau today looking for lines to play on this morning. Idwal Stream looked good from the path but up close there was too much water flowing in & around it for my peace of mind. South Gully, The Ramp, Screen, Curtain, Appendix, Sting, Cellar etc are all forming but need a couple more days of cold weather to be good enough to climb. If it stays cold 'til the weekend you might be in luck. Higher up (c.700m & above) there was evidence of a temperature inversion as the ground was not as frozen as lower down (c.300m). Very little old neve left & not much of the recent snow left on the tops to aid thaw/freeze cycle unfortunately. Clogwyn Du was bare; even Hidden Gully looked thin (tho' some footprints showed it had been ascended recently) & a couple of folk were scratching their way up a thin Right Hand Y Gully. Pillar Chimney's main pitch looked in but thin (the approach pitch had virtually no snow) whilst Left Hand Y was dry until the top ice ramp. The lines up the back of Cwm Cneifion (i.e. the various icy slabs & neve gullies) were thin but might be doable, the lower cwm's streams looked similar to Idwal Stream. The Gribin Ridge was a lot more fun!

Over in The Pass, Sergeant's Gully & Face Route, as well as the lines on Craig y Rhaedr, are beginning to form but again need a few more days. Upper Cwm Glas is holding some snow but the lines looked thin and patchy from the road. Snowed up rock routes and ridges look the better bet here.

Hope that helps folks.
TobyA on 09 Jan 2018
In reply to geoff b:

Amazing how much it sounds it has changed from Sunday! Idwal Stream was just a stream then and the Kitchen looked ice free from a distance. Clogwyn Du was hoared completely white as was the other side of the cwm where we did Golden Girl Ali.
Cornish boy - on 09 Jan 2018
In reply to geoff b:
Many thanks for your detailed report Geoff.

Fingers crossed that this cold spell continues and all these routes come into condition soon.

Cheers,

Paul
geoff b on 11 Jan 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings this time. The temperatures have been a little bit warmer than we might have liked and the snow & ice are slowly melting away. A quick check from the roadside this afternoon up into Cwm Glas (in the Pass) showed that there's still a bit on Face Route & in the upper cwm (Parsley Fern area) but it's patchy & less than I'd hoped for: you'd be lucky to string a line out of it. All the lower stuff has gone. I think it would be fair to assume that Idwal would be similarly affected. If it's any comfort, the air is crystal clear & the views superb at the moment, if you're content to walk. Hopefully winter is not done yet!

Misha - on 11 Jan 2018
In reply to geoff b:

Colder again next week and this time it looks like the turf high up has stayed frozen (and the rock will be cold as well), so things should come in quickly, at least for the mixed. Bound to be mega next weekend as I’m not free!

1
Neil Anderson - on 12 Jan 2018
In reply to geoff b:

Thanks very comprehensive and useful. Think the brief inversion has put paid to the ice for this spell. 

 

 

Bitsofdeadtree - on 19 Jan 2018

Can anyone provide any information at this time? 

static266 - on 19 Jan 2018
In reply to Bitsofdeadtree:

Climbed on Glyder Fach today, some ice, turf was well frozen above 900m, rock was rimed up high. Not much consolidated snow. Rain at all levels forecasted for Sunday. 

TobyA on 20 Jan 2018
In reply to Bitsofdeadtree:

Super day out on Crib Goch NW face today. Bomber turf, lots of hoar, lots of snow. But unfortunately the forecast is set to turn tomorrow.

angry pirate - on 20 Jan 2018
In reply to TobyA:

We were out on Senior's ridge as all the Devils kitchen ice routes basically weren't. The turf was only frozen high up. Sounds like you had a better day of it!

TobyA on 20 Jan 2018
In reply to angry pirate:

I've just added a photo to my UKC library that will show the conditions soon. No views and it was snowing heavy wet flakes on us all day, but the climb itself was superb.

angry pirate - on 20 Jan 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Looks like a cracking route! Yeah, we had really wet snow dumped on us all day too. I think we picked the wrong area: all the rock/mixed routes in the Ogwyn area were either easy ridges or just beyond us.

geoff b on 04 Feb 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Out walking on the Glyderau today (Y Garn, Foel Goch & Elidir Fawr) with stunning views in all directions. There was heaps of snow above 700m, heavily frozen puddles, exposed turf frozen and some tricky frozen sections on North facing slopes: a big change from earlier in the week. Clogwyn Du's gone from black to white in 24 hours! I got the impression from the snowline that there had been some gentle thawing over the course of the day but it felt pretty cold even in the village. The MWIS forecast for the week ahead is looking very promising so if you're free you might want to head up this way.

Babika - on 04 Feb 2018
In reply to geoff b:

I must have been following you on Y Garn and Elidir Fawr today! I agree it was stunning. 

Yesterday we soloed the Idwal Buttress getting the rope out on a couple of rock walls that were snowed/iced up. A fair bit of snow fell last night over 750m

kenneM - on 04 Feb 2018
In reply to Babika:

Has anyone been into the Ladders? Thinking of heading up Thursday. 

TobyA on 04 Feb 2018
In reply to kenneM:

Looked quite white from the road this afternoon.

We did Fallen Block Climb on Clogwyn Y Person. I was getting a good spindrift shower on pitch 1, and it was well frozen with lots of snow but rime only started on pitch 2. A team did a possible new route to our right and that little extra height meant their entire route was white.

Post edited at 23:36
kenneM - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Cheers Toby. Sounds like things are looking promising.

Mike

Simon Caldwell - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to kenneM:

Had good views across from Yr Elen yesterday, it's all very white! No sign of any ice, and the snow where we were was soft and deep with a breakable crust, but I'd expect the rock routes to be good at the moment.

TobyA on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Simon Caldwell:

I've not climbed on the Black Ladders, so would be interested to know which routes are rockier mixed type and perhaps worth considering for these cold snap then thaw style winters, that seem to be becoming ever more normal these days.  I did see someone had climbed one of the gullies (Pyramid maybe?) earlier this winter, but I can't imagine they are often that good. We descended Parsley Fern yesterday and there was about  20 mtrs of great neve as you dropped in from the top then a few hundred more of powdery snow where you had to be careful not to trip on loose rubble in many spots not that far below.

geoff b on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Ref. The Black Ladders. Check out the Ground Up guidebook for details but a lot of the more recent routes require frozen turf. Many of the 'original' routes require ice &/or neve, particularly to access the lower pitches. The Ladders usually require quite a long & complex cycle of cold weather to come into condition unfortunately. Craig Dafydd is a better bet as the crag is higher & most of the recent routes are not dependant on turf.

TobyA on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to geoff b:

Cheers Geoff. Funnily I was just discussing the Ground Up guide on the Facebook Snowdonia winter conditions group. It does have a lot in it on Black Ladders - a lot of routes I guess, and I love it as a little inspirational tome, but the more I use it as an actual guidebook the more I'm realising it's rather bad at that job! It's written in a way that almost necessitates you have the comprehensive summer guides with you too! Yesterday I realised the Crib Y Ddysgl section keeps referencing routes as being to the right or left of a certain summer route which it then doesn't describe! Like I say I love it for inspiration and toilet reading. Hate it for actually trying to get up climbs with.

Babika - on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Another problem with the Ground Up guide is that it describes itself as a definitive guide but doesn't have (for example) Parsely Fern Gully in it, probably the most popular winter route! Its also missing some of the easier stuff in Cwm Cneifon so I tend to use it for pictures and revert to Old Faithful for the routes I need.

TobyA on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to Babika:

It sort of does have Parsley Fern in it although it is really only mentioned in passing which is rather weird - agreed.  It does mention that it gets skied though! I did Parsley Fern years back before that Ground Up guide came out, so I guess that's why I didn't notice, but actually we used it as a descent on Sunday.

I actually added some stuff to the Crib Y Ddsgyl page of the Welsh Winter wiki last night. It doesn't look like it has had much attention in recent winters, but it has more info in it than the guidebook, so perhaps any of us who are climbing in Wales should be editing, correcting and adding to that to make it the definitive source?

Post edited at 19:00
Solaris on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to Babika:

I'm looking at p. 5 of the 2010 edition and it says "This book is an interim guide to winter climbing in North Wales, or more specifically, Northern Snowdonia. It includes full definitive coverage for the major winter venues in the area...", and then it gives a list of crags that does *not* include Cwm Cneifion or Crib y Ddysgl.

wilkesley - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

In my ancient Rick Newcombe guide, Parsley Fern is described as a "Fast descent for the competent. Even faster for those who aren't".

TobyA on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to wilkesley:

There's a video somewhere of someone rolling down it - horrific, although the chap survived without too severe injuries thankfully. 

99ster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> There's a video somewhere of someone rolling down it - horrific, although the chap survived without too severe injuries thankfully. 

Are you thinking of this one?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=88HGSryMPuE

Sean Kelly - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Babika:

There's nothing on Lliwedd either in the G U guide!

geoff b on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Hi there Toby,

My comment was specifically related to the Black Ladders not other crags as that was the one you referred to. To be fair, though the Ground Up guide does have deficiencies, it has way more info on that crag than any other source, including the Welsh Winter wiki. The latter fortunately does have additions (descriptions, photos & topos) made since the guide was published by myself & others. You (& others) make some fair points about the Ground Up guide but depending on the crag you want it is way better than anything else out there.  There will probably never be another Welsh Winter guidebook, unless global warming magically reverses itself, as the cost is prohibitive for the meagre sales possible. If you/we would like to solve & update the omissions why not contribute topos of the crags that you/we feel would most be appreciated to the Welsh Winter wiki? Cwm Cneifion & Lliwedd would be obvious starting points. Most of us carry phones with cameras so it wouldn't be difficult. Please get involved and solve the problem.

TobyA on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to geoff b:

I would love there to be another guide, but I see your point about conditions changing (and also the publishing/market/technology conditions also changing). I hope it does happen though.

Since rediscovering the Wiki last week (I remember visiting it years ago when I wasn't living in the UK but only re-found it last week when I was looking for more info on Crib Y Ddsgyl). I have started adding some photos, some information and made some edits since then. I've done a photo topo showing where Fallen Block Climb goes, for example, and noted that at least the first pitch is in the 88 guide as Church Buttress.

Has anyone here done Rectory Chimneys on Crib Y Ddysgal? It sounds good and might need a plan for next weekend (if my wife and children forgive me for disappearing again for day!).

edit: for anyone else who doesn't know about the wiki http://welshwinterclimbs.wikifoundry.com/

Post edited at 21:42
TobyA on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Sean Kelly:

There is actually, I've just checked. It includes a huge description of the girdle if you want to get involved in an epic second ascent!

Simon Caldwell - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to geoff b:

> There will probably never be another Welsh Winter guidebook, unless global warming magically reverses itself, as the cost is prohibitive for the meagre sales possible

Yet there's a sufficient market to have 2, editions of the Lakes Winter Guide in the space of 7 years, with possibly a 3rd on the way only 6 years later?

Trevers - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to geoff b:

> There will probably never be another Welsh Winter guidebook, unless global warming magically reverses itself.

You want to hope that climate changes causes a shutdown of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation. North Wales winter climbing like back in the good old days (circa. 12000 BC)

Sean Kelly - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> There is actually, I've just checked. It includes a huge description of the girdle if you want to get involved in an epic second ascent!

Yes the girdle and that's about it for Wales's biggest cliff, which is crying out to be fully updated.

ianstevens - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Solaris:

> I'm looking at p. 5 of the 2010 edition and it says "This book is an interim guide to winter climbing in North Wales, or more specifically, Northern Snowdonia. It includes full definitive coverage for the major winter venues in the area...", and then it gives a list of crags that does *not* include Cwm Cneifion or Crib y Ddysgl.

Maybe because Cwm Cneifon is, in fact, a Cwm rather than a crag. If you mean Clogwyn Du, that's covered extensively (although not in my personal copy as the page has fallen out).

 

TobyA on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to ianstevens:

That's connected to one of the things that confused me at first; I did Golden Girl Ali, and its sort of in the Clogwyn Du section - it just describes it as being "opposite". It's not actually hard to find as you can see the Tower it goes up almost from the road I think, but the 1988 guide has that cliff - across the cwm from Clogwyn Du in much more detail for Tower Gully and Slab and the like.

CameronH - on 08 Feb 2018

Thinking of heading to Snowdonia this weekend for some low to mid-grade winter climbs if conditions and weather allow - has anyone been out in the last couple of days or can have a good idea of what conditions might be like at the weekend? Thanks

 

George Fisher - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to CameronH:

I’m heading up tomorrow for a week. It looks pretty wild over the weekend but if you did need a partner I’m keen to try and get something done, happy with anything up to IV ish. 

Solaris on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to ianstevens:

Oh dear... I had hoped it would be clear that I was not, as you seem to think, complaining about the absence of any information from the Ground Up guidebook.

I was replying to Babika who said that it's "also missing some of the easier stuff in Cwm Cneifon", and trying to say that that absence can't be used to fault the GU book because, contrary to Babika, it is not intended to be a definitive guidebook. Ditto, with appropriate changes, to Toby A about winter climbs in the vicinity of Parsley Fern Gully.

Please accept my apologies for referring to Cwm Cneifion (not "Cneifon") as a crag, but in doing so I was following page 79 of Campbell and Newton's "Welsh Winter Climbs".

Meanwhile, congratulations to the Ground Up team for producing, within their stated limitations, a really useful and inspiring guidebook.

Post edited at 23:56
CameronH - on 09 Feb 2018
In reply to George Fisher:

Hi George, I've actually already got a partner, but thanks for the offer. Have a good week!

99ster - on 09 Feb 2018
In reply to George Fisher:

> I’m heading up tomorrow for a week. It looks pretty wild over the weekend but if you did need a partner I’m keen to try and get something done, happy with anything up to IV ish. 

I've sent you a message...

carld - on 09 Feb 2018
In reply to George Fisher:

Had a wander into the Ladders today. Ice forming at many levels including the lower tiers. Ice forming on Icefall gully, Somme and Ypres.  Only ice that looked climbable that I saw was on second pitch of Pyramid gully but the first pitch was very thin. Also Playschool first pitch I could see out of Eastern gully had a climbable ice pitch. Snow deep and unhelpful at first in Eastern gully but consolidated more with height. Even some good snow axe placements higher up. Turf was variable but bomber in places. Don’t know how much of the ice will survive tomorrow’s mini thaw but the gully snow might improve by Sunday. 

Logs06 - on 14 Feb 2018
In reply to carld:

Great conditions on Clogwyn Du on Monday - heavily rimed, (but also heavy verglassed). Excellent new IX 9 done, absolutely brilliant route.

Cloggy on Tuesday was in good nick - tons of snow, frozen turf where exposed, turf buried by snow not so bomber. Looked at trying FFA of Silver Machine but the ice was soft crud, the rock heavily verglassed and the turf aerated.. so we ran away and climbed Jubilee Climb.

Post edited at 10:13
1
ffati - on 14 Feb 2018
In reply to Logs06:

How is snow coverage will be in north wales on Friday is it worth packing skis in the back of the car?

tradisrad - on 14 Feb 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Anyone think NW is worth a chance tomorrow? Thanks!

mrphilipoldham - on 14 Feb 2018
In reply to tradisrad:

It's been thawing today, but temperatures are just starting to drop again. Latest Ogwen webcam pic before dark shows lots of white stuff still below the cloud base, which is promising! Currently weighing up Wales or the Lakes.. 

nation1 - on 14 Feb 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Was on Snowdon yesterday..... intended to climb on trinity somewhere but ended up walking to the summit due to weather. Walking to the summit was difficult due to winds and zero visibility, there was oceans of snow on the ground which made for some difficult walking, axe and crampons essential.  As we walked off the summit the clouds cleared and it turned into a fine day but the strong winds stuck around. The mountain is blasted with snow, and looking up at trinity on my decent the gullies were full and some ice forming from what I could see. Had a quick look at forecast, freezing level low tomorrow but rising as the week goes on. Hope this helps. 

steveriley - on 15 Feb 2018
In reply to nation1:

Lots of wet snow in Cwm Glas Mawr yesterday, still thawing quite high up. Avalanche debris in Parsley Fern.

tradisrad - on 15 Feb 2018
In reply to nation1:

Central Trinity in good condition today, but with warming temps might not be around much longer! 

mrphilipoldham - on 23 Feb 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

For all the doubters... the BMC turf probe is showing -0.05C on the Idwal page!

static266 - on 23 Feb 2018
In reply to mrphilipoldham:

The forecast for the next week is suggesting very very cold temperatures. 

airbournegrapefruit on 23 Feb 2018

Has anyone been near Cwm Glas today? How are conditions looking?

Iain Thow - on 24 Feb 2018
In reply to airbournegrapefruit:

They were excellent on thursday, lots of good crisp neve in the gullies and on ledges. You had to go high to get to it - the bottom third of the Ramp wasn't there, for instance, but Parsleyfern and PF LH were both well in.

Misha - on 26 Feb 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

The Clogwyn Ddu temperature guage is through the floor, don't think I've seen it that cold since it's been set up. We might even see 30cm turf drop below zero, at which case even the gloomiest of naysayers would have to accept that it's pretty well frozen ;-)

Thoughts on Central Icefall being in by the weekend? I doubt it but with temperatures being this low, it might happen...

mrphilipoldham - on 26 Feb 2018
In reply to Misha:

There’s no much ice about at all at the moment due to lack of moisture.. see what this weather front brings us over the next couple of days!

Misha - on 26 Feb 2018
In reply to mrphilipoldham:

Yes but Central Icefall has a decent flow generally.

ffati - on 26 Feb 2018
In reply to Misha:

Ice starting to form nicely in Craig y Rhaeadyr when I drove past today

mrphilipoldham - on 26 Feb 2018
In reply to Misha:

Perhaps, I’m not familiar with it’s usual state.

charlie.wilkinson - on 26 Feb 2018
In reply to Misha:

I took this yesterday (Sunday) on the way up to Parsley Fern

https://imgur.com/a/oHvvi

robgixer - on 26 Feb 2018
In reply to Misha:

Anyone seen into the Black Ladders? Did it hold onto any snow at all. Looks like the turf should be frozen and if there's more snow forecast could look white again. 

Pay Attention - on 26 Feb 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

is there any news of Mid Wales ...  anyone?  Cader region gets plenty wet in summer ....

 

Misha - on 27 Feb 2018
In reply to charlie.wilkinson:

Cheers. Surprised it was already shaping up, thought it would just be a thin veneer. Perhaps...

Mrphilipoldham - it’s usually a substantial waterfall.

Post edited at 00:41
thlcr1 on 27 Feb 2018
In reply to Misha:

We were in Cwn Glas yesterday. As shown in the pictures Central Icefall is very thin but forming. We went further up and did Sargent's gully. There was a fair bit of water still flowing and the the ice varied from thin and fragile to VERY thick and solid enough to take screws. Quite a few areas were covered in crystal clear bullet hard ice that was spicy to climb. The odd sections of turf were well frozen. Over all it was a bit harder than normal but perfectly doable  and excellent fun.

mrphilipoldham - on 27 Feb 2018
In reply to Misha:

Apologies, misunderstood.. thought you were talking of a watercourse on Clogwyn Du.

geoff b on 27 Feb 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Just got back from a long day in Cwm Glas. Sergeant's Gully is in excellent condition now, The Parsley Ferns looked great. Routes on Craig y Rheadr are forming but not quite there yet, similar story for Face Route. Routes on Crib Goch & Crib y Ddysgl are great as turf is bullet proof from the road up. Great neve on the Clogwyn y Person Arete & the ridge to Crib y Ddysgl. It was -2.5C when we left Ynys Ettws at 8pm so it all bodes well.

TobyA on 27 Feb 2018
In reply to geoff b:

Has much fresh snow come down yet? The pictures from the last few days looked like everything but the gullies was completely snow free, but I guess it might even be starting to rime up again a bit?

Coming over at the weekend to meet an old uni mate who I used to climb with lots way back when, but who hasn't really climbed much over the last 20 years! We did SE Gully on Great End a couple of winter back and he did fine seconding me up that (a bit of moaning... ;) ) so I want to pick something similar in Wales for this weekend - something II/III or IIIish. I was thinking about something in the Carnedds as I suspect Ogwen and Cwm Glas might get pretty busy - can anyone suggest an icy II or III that they've enjoyed?

Misha - on 27 Feb 2018
In reply to geoff b:

Thanks for the update. Sounds good, except the hut water supply is probably frozen! Always a good sign ;-)

Misha - on 27 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Playschool on the Ladders. Icy dribbles and turf.

TobyA on 27 Feb 2018
In reply to Misha:

I'll look that one up Misha - I've not done a route on the Ladders, so it would be two birds with one stone... cheers.

nantygwynant on 28 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Was up in the pass driving yesterday just managed to get to the top (sheet ice all over roads and down to -5c)  lots of snow in the pass and waterfalls are forming nicely. Even colder today with wind chill here so it should get better..

joe.wahab on 28 Feb 2018
In reply to nantygwynant:

> Was up in the pass driving yesterday just managed to get to the top (sheet ice all over roads and down to -5c) 

Sounds pretty treacherous - how good is access around Snowdonia during cold snaps like these? Is it likely there will be impassible roads later in the week, or are they likely to be kept well gritted/clear? 

 

Sean Kelly - on 28 Feb 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

It is going to be a tough day out on the hill tomorrow with predicted temps of -11C and winds gusting to 80mph! Just imagine the Wind-chill factor, possibly -30C!!!

Big Steve - on 28 Feb 2018
In reply to joe.wahab:

I was on Tryfan today, the Ogwen valley road was fine, as was the road from Betwys Coed. No idea about the pass though. It was well gritted and almost completely snow free until this afternoon's small blizzard. I came along the A55 along the coast, then the A470, both completely snow free.

I was worried about the roads myself, having not driven there in winter for many years but all was fine.

Misha - on 28 Feb 2018
In reply to Big Steve:

From past experience of snowy spells, the good thing about North Wales is there are only really two roads you need to get to most of the winter climbing - the A5 and the Pass. Both can be shut in heavy snow (especially if there's drifting) but as they're fairly important roads (particularly the A5), they tend to get ploughed and gritted reasonably quickly. However if, as the forecast suggests, there's lots of snow on Friday evening, it's entirely possible that the A5 will be closed between Bethesda and Capel Curig and the Pass will be closed above Nant Peris, until some time during Saturday daytime. However it's not that much further to walk from Nant Peris to the ice routes above the Pass and similarly you can get to the Black Ladders from the main road in Bethesda (the smaller residential roads going up the hill might prove tricky). Would be quite a trek to the routes in and above Idwal though.

1
geoff b on 28 Feb 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

The road from Pen y Pass to Nant Peris is pretty treacherous at the moment: I'd be very wary of using it without winter tyres or chains for the next 2 days. The rest of the roads (A55, A5, 'Beris to Nant Peris) were clear at 5pm today.  Conditions are looking pretty awesome. From the road, Face Route looks in now & the routes on Craig y Rhaeadr look like they'll be there by tomorrow!!!! See yesterday's comments about Upper Cwm Glas. Lots of loose snow being blown around and the wind direction is varying quite a bit so it's all over the place. Oh, there's no shortage of water at Ynys, Misha!

Alex Riley on 28 Feb 2018
In reply to geoff b:

I don't think snow chains would be any use at the moment...

Climbed the screen today in idwal, didn't look great from a distance but on closer inspection was fine. Hard ice, taking screws well, almost no running water. The rest of the routes are getting there but only a few climbable.

charlie.wilkinson - on 28 Feb 2018
In reply to Alex Riley:

pass is now closed with heavy snow above Nant

Ian84 - on 02 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Any update/outlook for weekend??

Had planned on coming up (from the Sussex Coast)tomorrow to climb Sunday. 90% at the point of calling it off but just wanted to get an idea of local conditions/state of roads on the off-chance that I ended up bailing on a 'perfect Himalayan experience'.

Assumption is that the margins are too narrow but would appreciate some local insight as MWIS, Met Office UK highways etc don't give the full picture.

Post edited at 09:05
TobyA on 02 Mar 2018
In reply to Ian84:

In a similar position - long arranged weekend with an old mate, me coming from Sheffield, he from Oxfordshire. It looks fine there, but just getting there would seem to be the issue. Almost all the cross Peak District routes are closed for me. My normal route to N Wales is via Snake Pass which was definitely closed late last night. But lots of routes have been climbed and logged on UKC over the last couple of days and only Llanberis Pass seems currently to be closed over there.

 

ArnaudG - on 02 Mar 2018
In reply to TobyA:

All of the roads across the Peak were closed last night. On the Manchester side things are pretty fine as it seems we've escape the worst of it but as close as Hadfield and Macclesfield there are serious drifts on the roads.

Cheers

A.-

Alex Riley on 02 Mar 2018
In reply to TobyA:

I climbing trees nameless stream and clogwyn left branch yesterday. The stream was easily climbing but doubt you would get any gear. Left branch was in great albeit hard nick, looking at pictures of previous years the main pitch was formed slightly differently with more of a pillar running up the middle. Ice is pretty hard in places, taking screws well (we placed 22cm screws). 

The roads weren't too bad last night, but it was drifting quite a bit. There was also isolated windslab forming on easterly (without looking at a map??) aspects.

geoff b on 02 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

It's still very windy in 'Beris this morning tho' not as bad as last night. MWIS suggests it will be less windy tomorrow (40 mph gusts on exposed areas) but better to keep off the tops. Lots of yesterday's snow has been scoured off the mountain slopes & blown about into drifts, whilst the temperature is still below freezing (we're at c.100m here). Is there anything to climb? You bet; Cwm Glas & Idwal would be good bets (see above) as they be less exposed. The main roads are open (i.e. as far up as Nant Peris from 'Beris) but I don't know if the Pass has been re-opened as I'm busy chain sawing a 100+ year old oak tree that was blown over last night! Hope that helps folks.

Logs06 - on 02 Mar 2018
In reply to geoff b:

As Geoff says absolutely tons to go at.

FFA yesterday of a route I've never seen in in 20(?) years of winter climbing in N.Wales - Broadmoor, on the Grochan, is brilliant and now goes at VII 8 with great icy/rocky mixed topped by a WI4 finish. Atrociously good conditions!

3rd ascent of Back in Black done on Weds in its typical condition, confirmed VII 7. (I was on the first and the third ascents!)

Face route done on Weds.

Every smear and gully in the Pass is in or getting there - Arcturus lefthand and rigthand anyone?? Probably last climbed 20+ years ago.

White Trash on the Mot is there.

Crown of Thorns.

You can climb roadside ice on the lower walls of the Cromlech.

And of course Cascade/CID and even Chequerd Wall are all in.

Rocky mixed is too dry; ice and icy mixed is where it's at.

 

Misha - on 02 Mar 2018
In reply to Logs06:

Thanks Pete but I think this is fake news. All the ice melted this morning and there is nothing left apart from Idwal Stream. No point travelling, people!

3
Logs06 - on 02 Mar 2018
In reply to Misha:

Don't worry Misha they'll all queue for the honeypots anyway and spend the day dodging falling ice.

1

We're planning on parking in Pen-y-Pass car park over the weekend. (Traveling up from Oxford).
Does anyone know what state the B4086 from Capel Curig to the Pen-y-Pass YHA is please?
I know the Pen-y-Pass YHA is closed, so we're booked in at the Betws-y-Coed YHA instead.

Thanks,

Paul.

nation1 - on 02 Mar 2018
In reply to Misha:

Wow is this really the case ?

geoff b on 03 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Super busy in Cwm Idwal today, just like the good old days! Looked like a lot of the low to mid-grade routes were in condition. Ice was varied but generally very good & the turf is still excellent. MWIS suggesting it should be good for another day.

ianstevens - on 03 Mar 2018
In reply to City-Worker-Fell-Runner:

If you haven't already seen the PyP car park is an ice rink and is closed.

1
pec on 03 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Is there much in the way of 'useful' snow around or is it mostly powder with anything climbable on water ice?

Thanks.

bensilvestre - on 03 Mar 2018
In reply to pec:

Water ice, powder snow, dry rock, frozen turf

pec on 03 Mar 2018
In reply to bensilvestre:

> Water ice, powder snow, dry rock, frozen turf


Thanks, thought that was probably the case, just wanted to make sure.

Misha - on 04 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Well that was the week that was, as far as water ice is concerned. First ascents (Pete’s been busy!), rare repeats and every random dribble frozen. Party atmosphere on Craig y Rhaeadr yesterday with six teams on Cascade, one on Chequered and us on CID. Less busy today but Cascade still got two ascents, we did Chequered (melty but still good) and a team bailed on CID after the first pitch as it was looking pretty wet and potentially unstable above  (probably ok but who knows...).

The crag was just below freezing level as we had on/off snow alternating with rain but the ropes and gear weren’t frozen (they were yesterday). Higher up above Face Route there looked like a sprinkling of fresh snow this afternoon. I guess Clogwyn Ddu ice would still be good and the crag might even be rimed up depending on the exact freezing level.

1
tradisrad - on 06 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Anyone got a current conditions report? Cheers!

bensilvestre - on 06 Mar 2018
In reply to tradisrad:

Walked up to devils kitchen today hoping a mixed route would be in. Higher temps than forecast meant fully thawed turf. Lots of ice still hanging in there, but wouldn't have wanted to climb anything vaguely steep. Some enthusiastic teams on lower angled ice. Clogwyn du was black.

If temps are as per the MWIS forecast I reckon the ice will hang in there. But the freezing level needs to drop a bit for it to be climbable

tradisrad - on 06 Mar 2018
In reply to bensilvestre:

Thanks! Did Left Hand Branch look like it was hanging in there? 

Post edited at 18:19
geoff b on 07 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Still lots of snow on Snowdon, Crib y Ddysgl & Glyder Fawr: 3.5C daytime temp in the valley yesterday & today, so they'll still be stuff to do up high.

Cuillin Calling on 07 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Report from Cryn Las/Upper Cwm Glas today. Got Sargeants Gully done, ice generally good but thawing fast. All but first pitch of Face Route hanging on in there. Cascade and central there, looking thin. Lots of fresh snow in Cwm Glas, 1-3 feet deep. Spindrift cascading down sidewalls and witnessed powder slide in lower 100m of Parsley Fern. Some good patches of ice in cwm, half buried under snow. Everything needs a refreeze to come good again. 

 

cragtyke on 07 Mar 2018
In reply to Cuillin Calling:

 

Idwal stream was in decent nick this afternoon, some holes but no problem. Surprising amount of ice around but kitchen routes not back in just yet.

NathanP - on 08 Mar 2018
In reply to geoff b:

Lots of soft snow on the Pyg Track and the Central Trinity with a thick layer of graupel sliding off the top yesterday. I'd be very careful around any gullys and open slopes, especially if there is more snow on top of the graupel layer.

As others have said, there is a lot of water ice about but the snow needs a bit of thaw-freeze.

Post edited at 06:32
jezb1 - on 08 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Lots more snow this morning right down to Llanberis level. 

geoff b on 08 Mar 2018
In reply to jezb1:

6cm (that's 2+ inches in old money) of the wet stuff in 'Beris. The sky is beginning to clear now.

99ster - on 08 Mar 2018
In reply to jezb1:

And the freezing level will be 600-700m on Friday...and then above the summits on the weekend, together with rain.  So that's pretty much...game over.

Simon Caldwell - on 08 Mar 2018
In reply to 99ster:

> So that's pretty much...game over.

until Monday when it's due to freeze again

Cuillin Calling on 08 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Went for an explore round the Glyders today. Some of the Kitchen routes are definitely still in and in good shape (I'm around tomorrow if anyone is free to partner up - see my post on Lifts/Partners forum). Idwal Stream was fairly well buried by fresh snow but looked like there was decent ice underneath. Went up the Goat Track, which had some nice ice steps. The Appendix is missing 10m in the lower half, top is forming. Other routes to right of Appendix only partly formed. The Sting looked good. Traversed round the corrie rim of Y Garn, masses of powder in all the A-D gullies and large cornices so I'd leave clear for a while. Saw a team on Banana Gully but couldn't tell what condition it was in from a distance. From afar Nameless Cwm looked plastered, couldn't see Clogwyn Ddu but I imagine that was similar. Cold enough for some of the ice routes to be in on the latter but didn't see them.

geoff b on 13 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

It's not all gone yet! If you're interested in some easy options there are still a few lines available: Banana Gully on Y Garn still has a continuous & wide strip of the white stuff whilst in Cwm Cneifion Tower Gully & the slabs to the right (Tower slabs?) are still iced up as are the routes on the back wall. Pillar Chimney's cleft has ice in the back of it & the top ramp pitch tho' the cliff itself is black. The continuous ramp line right of RHY Gully is also there. The turf is still frozen in the shaded parts of the upper cwm and the forthcoming days' forecast suggests a return to snow & colder temperatures.

geoff b on 29 Mar 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Can we get to 150 posts I wonder? believe it or not there is still heaps of snow on the mountains, both old neve & fresh snow from 600m upwards: lovely & squeaky above 900m. Hidden Gully is still there but it was too claggy to see into the rest of the cwm. Upper Cwm Glas still has long, wide lines of neve whilst Snowdon is very white. The forecast for the Easter weekend is cold so there's going to be plenty to do.

RuthW - on 30 Mar 2018
In reply to geoff b:

I'll make you post 150! 

I can confirm that today there was plenty of snow and ice in Hidden Gully!  Lots of fun.

geoff b on 01 Apr 2018
In reply to Neil Anderson:

Another stunning day up here: very busy on the Miners & PyG tracks but quiet on the ridges and crags. Upper Cwm Glas still has lots of snow, neve & even ice. The Parsley Fern Gullies are in super condition, the Ramp & Sinister were in, even the Fidelity icefall looked formed! How long it will last with the forecast rain/snow coming in I don't know but at least you won't be disturbed by people sliding past you off the PyG track! Clogwyn y Garnedd looked stunning & Central Trinity had an ascent today: the ascentionists said the snow & neve were great but the turf wasn't frozen as hard as they'd expected.


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