Capel Curig, 12th-13th July 2003

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This year's family of the Vibram Mountaineering Club was held at Bryn Brethynan in Capel Curig.

Saturday, 12th July 2003
click This is the hut in the morning sunshine. It offers fine views of Moel Siabod but is a fair hike up a track from the car park by the road.
click The weather looked good so four of us headed over to the Main Wall of Glyder Fach for some climbing.
click This is Andy H. and Alison heading off up Slab Route (VD). John T. and I took the Direct Route (S).
click After a couple of pitches we met up again allowing Alison to grab a shot of JT negotiating this airy corner. His hands are on a ledge that started maybe 10m away at about 0.5m wide but narrowed to nothing at this end. I am quite comfortable balanced over a precipice so I only put in two pieces of gear - one at each end. I don't think John was impressed!
click Three pitches later and we were at the final - crux - pitch. It is very steep and the holds are sparse. In fact the only real weakness is the crack in the left hand wall.
click After several attempts and much grunting and swearing John made one final push and made it to the top. My turn - hmmm. My hips won't allow my legs to get to strange angles and I don't yet trust my weight on a hand jamb so, after not much deliberation, I cheated and pulled up on one of the Friends. This is not really my sort of pitch.
click The descent route is awkward and difficult to follow but offers great views of Llyn Bochlwyd and Pen yr Ole Wen (one of the Welsh 3000'ers).
click While Andy and Alison just managed to squeeze through Needle's Eye Climb (VD), John and I descended to Alphabet Slabs. I led Delta (VD) taking all 3 pitches in one. Instead of sticking to the book, I opted for the 'most interesting' route and ended up on the top section of Gamma. Then we went down again and John led Gamma (S) but skipped the top pitch which I'd stolen from him!
Sunday, 13th July 2003
click Sunday dawned just as clear so five of us tripped off to Cwm Idwall, and the hordes.
click Idwall Slabs were very busy and, since we wanted to make a day of it, we headed to the right and took the deserted Idwall Buttress (D). This is not much more than a scramble but pleasant enough in the sunshine.
click This is Anne near the top with Llyn Idwall in the background. Soon after this we stopped for lunch then picked up our gear and trudged up the grass and scree to the foot the higher wall.
click Here we are just setting off up Central Arete (VD).
click This is much more of a climb and, in my opinion, worth more than the one star it gets in the guidebook.
click Here's Anne on the Gendarmes near the top of the last pitch with, again, Llyn Idwall in the background.

From the top we headed right to Llyn y Cwn and then used the well-made path down through the Devil's Kitchen.