Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Mountain Mutts

After a long & arduous journey, we arrived at North Wales on Friday evening and in preparation of a long day Saturday it was early to bed.

Saturday dawned bright and we all met up at the base of Mount Snowdon. Sheila & Ernie were sensible & parked in the car park opposite while my chaffeur for the day decided that the extra mile walk would get us in the spirit!

With rucksacks full of drink & snacks we set off up the 1st part of Mount Snowdon - within 5 minutes the majority of us were thinking that we must have been mad to agree to young Ollie's quest.

Despite struggling at just 200m, we plodded on, removing our jackets to enjoy the sunshine. The path soon became a gentle (ish) slope & we were optimistic as we reached the halfway point.

After a short break, we continued the trek thinking the worst was over - how wrong we were! Soon past the halfway point, the slope became so steep that rocks had been placed to make steps - poor Poppy B had to leap up each one as most were talling than she was. Struggling up we asked our 'leader' - Dino if this was the worst of it. With a reply of 'more or less' we should've known! We reached the top of the steps to eventually go under a railway bridge which we were was told had magnificent views. Unfortunately, the mist was so thick that we could hardly see 10m ahead - probably a good job because if we could've seen any further I think we may have given up. It was now a case of one foot in front of the other & to just try & keep going. At one point, I found myself alone with Poppy M in the mist - with no one passing me on the way up or coming down & I began to wonder if I'd lost direction & gotten onto the wrong track. Even Poppy stood in front of me, looked up & cried!

Looking back I could see Sheila, Ernie & Poppy B fighting their way up. We eventually went thru the mist to a sight that was breath taking. The sky was a glorious bright blue above the pure white clouds, with other mountain peaks visible above the clouds. Now the summit was in sight & we needed no further encouragement.

With a last push, we continued on our way, finally reaching the summit after 2 & 1/2 hours. We took our turn at standing on the summit point for that all important photo shot (Sheila & Ernie will need to add their photo!).

We had about an hour to relax before beginning the descent back to civilization. It was all downhill from now on! Easy! or so we thought. The journey down was as difficult as the journey up. By this time our thighs were pulsating and our knees were trembling. The steep gradient caused chaos with toes & both Ernie and I managed to grace the mountain with our bottoms!

Poppy B & Poppy M were still as fresh as a daisy & went running ahead & playing around - it must be the 4 legs as opposed to 2!

A well deserved cup of tea & piece of cake at halfway point refuelled us to continue the descent.

We all finally made it down in the exactly the same time as it took us to get up and it was back to our Hotel & Farmhouse to freshen up & collapse into bed!

It was such an achievement for us all - many of us didn't think we would make it. Young Ollie (11) didn't complain once & even carried his mum's rucksack up most of the way. We even had a lady who had recently (6 weeks previously) had major surgery - all for the love of dogs!

Thank you to all that sponsored Poppy B - I vouch that they walked every step!

I would like to thank everyone at Hope Rescue for letting me stay at the farmhouse & making Poppy & me so welcome. I would also like to say a HUGE thank you to Sheila & Ernie, for not only allowing me to accompany them, but for also driving me there & back & for helping me get my new addition - welcome to Meridian Mutt - (Manic) Maisie.

There are lots of photos which we will try and get on a slide show - unfortunately, the pictures do not do Snowdonia justice. We did 2 further walks on Sunday & Monday, and both had jaw dropping scenery. This is definately a place to go back to - tho apparently next year it's Hadrian's Wall!


  1. Good write up Tracey.
    As you say photos do not do the scenery justice. It was a fantastic weekend which also benefits Hope Rescue and will stay in our memories and has whetted our appetites for more. So watch this space for some more challenging weekend walks this winter.
    Speaking to our daughter yesterday they have now thought about doing 'Offer's Dyke' which runs the length and breadth of the border of England and Wales (instead of Hadrians Wall). Volunteers would be able to walk all or part of it.
    Again thank you for all those who have sponsored Poppy B and we will let you know how much has been raised when all monies have been collected. It is not too late for further sponsorship.
    Last but not least welcome Maisie to Meridian Mutts and good luck to Tracey with the adorable 'Whirling Dervish',
    Oh' I forgot to mention 'Fawlty Towers' who added to the experience - and that's another story!
    Will add some more photos when we get back from Eygpt.
    Ernie & Sheila

  2. Blast! That's more sponsorship money I now owe!