The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Saturday, 12 December 2009

From Llyn Eiddew-mawr

What a stunning day!

We managed to crawl out of our sleeping bags and into the nippy air just as the sky was starting to get light and by 8.15 we were off for a 1.5 mile cross-country yomp* through heather, rock and bog.

There had been a bit of a temptation to be lazy and simply retrace our steps along the trodden paths we had taken yesterday (with the vague excuse that I did want to revisit a stone-circley-thing that we didn’t have time to explore yesterday), but that would have been defeatist, so we steeled our legs for some tough terrain.

It turned out to be pretty easy going (as Rhinog cross-country goes), and within the hour we had reached the path (at times a very good and obvious one) that would lead us (through some of the most waterlogged bogginess we have experienced in the area) back to Traws.

Mick did lose a leg up to above his knee at one point (sorry Conrad, I didn’t have the camera to hand at the time!), and uncountable times we went in to ankle-deep. But, it was all good fun, and under such stunning skies we couldn’t help but feel that we were in the right place.

Here are just a couple of photos of the splendidness of the day:


*Edited to add: Mick says that I've made it sound like we only walked 1.5 miles today. What I meant was that we yomped 1.5 miles pathlessly before reaching a path that we followed for some miles before joining a road to rejoin our outward route.

Total stats for the two half-days were a modest 12.5 miles walked with an equally modest 2000 feet of ascent.


  1. Is that a bothy in the background on the last pic?

  2. Sounds excellent. Sunday's footpaths must have seemed very 'pedestrian' in comparison!

  3. Hi Conrad - it's not a MBA bothy, but now you mention it, I've never ventured around to the front to see whether the building is open.

    The first couple or three times we passed by, there was a farmer nearby and I had the notion that it was occupied. However, I now appreciate that it doesn't even have a track for access, and there's no electricity going to it, so it seems a little unlikely. Must check it out more thoroughly next time we pass - it wouldn't be a bad location for a bothy (a bit close to a road, but sufficient bogginess surrounding it to put off many).

  4. Martin - my legs would never have forgiven me if on Sunday I had put them through 10 miles of Saturday's terrain!

    I think another return trip or two will be made to the Rhinogau in the new year to re-educate my body in the ways of multi-day backpacking over 'interesting' terrain.