11th May 2010
It's been a long time since I last climbed a Welsh Peak for the first time and the first time I've climbed one I wasn't sure how to pronounce, this is my view of Moel Siabod....
Scroll down for photos and a description of the walk
Parking - free of charge!
Moel Siabod - in the morning
The "Snowdonia National Park" car park at Capel Curig bears no charge, compare that to the Lake District! On the right, the North end of Moel Siabod sits beneath cold, unsettled clouds; fresh snow appears to have fallen and I'm not sure I've made the right decision to tackle this new territory.
I inherited Poucher's Welsh Peaks and I am using this book as a guide to the walk. Crossing the bridge over Cyfyng Falls, I can now head for the hills, having spent a little while walking down the road. The river level is very low.
There is a short walk along the river before climbing up through some old quarry workings near Pont-Cyfnyg.
The Way Forward
This is still the North end of Moel Siabod, the top not in view for some time. For English readers, try "Murl Shai-Bad", that's my interpretation of how I've heard it said by locals.
"Sheet of Water"
I'd like to suggest that any such expanse of water in Lakeland would have a name, it's much bigger than Innominate Tarn, but maps and the guidebook offer no name. The path can be seen on the right-hand side of the water.
Strange...I went to have a closer look and apart from a trickle of water eminating from the hole, there was a dull humming noise. There was no noticeable breeze and no echo in the hole, so I'm puzzled by it.
Whilst I'd been examining the quarry area, the weather had been brightening up. This is a typical mountain corrie with a steep headwall. My ascent route goes over the low ground to the left, in line with Poucher's book, but I'm sure scramblers could make a more direct approach to the summit.
As I was gaining height, a wintry shower came over the mountain, so I wrapped up and sat tight for 15 minutes.
Moel Siabod Summit
The North Top
Snowdon and The Glyders
A View to the West
Looking Back to the Summit
I had a walk down the summit ridge, overlooking Llyn Foel. Soon enough I would be taking the direct descent to Capel Cruig.
The descent path slants down the fell side to the twin lakes of Llynnau Mymbyr, which are close to Capel Curig.
Llynnau Mymbyr and Snowdon
Moel Siabod - in the afternoon
My decision to chance the weather was rewarded with fine views as the walk and day progressed.
Walkers: Just Me
Time taken: 5hrs 50 minutes, over a distance of approx. 7 miles. Moel Siabod is 2860ft asl., with the walk requiring about 2400ft of ascent.
Route: Capel Curig, down Afon Llugwy to the next road bridge, up the quarry path to Llyn Foel and around the back (South) side of Moel Siabod to the summit. Direct route down the flank back to Plas-y-Brenin and Capel Curig.
Weather and conditions: Cold and showery to start and getting better all the way.
Greetings Count: No one until the summit, where others started appearing from all directions.
Richard's Refreshment Review: Can of pop and biscuit from the stone-faced guy at Pinnacle Stores, Capel Curig. A bit of a smile and a little eye contact can go a long way. I'll be avoiding this place in future.
All photos copyright Richard Ratcliffe 2010 ©