Blizzard’s and its nearly May!

Apparently the jetsream is out of place. Hence we are getting such awful weather. So awful that today I awoke to see the BBC and Met Office forecasts for snowdonia that included 70-80 mph gusts and snow falling down to 300m. A lovely day for teaching navigation then!

I met up with the group from various BMC clubs and Peak Mountaineering at 9am. We came up with a plan to get out there and get stuck in. No sooner had we left the hut, the snow started to pound us. The plan was to circumnavigate Tryfan, as there is some good navigation up to Blwch Tryfan, and then we’d see how we were doing.

Teaching is such weather is always interesting, as most people can cope up to a point, the trick is to decide when that point is reached. The group did really well. I didn’t envy Dan from PYB, who was going all the way over the tops back to the centre with his group. Head to wind, blizzards and driving rain, it was going to be a very ‘Scottish’ traverse for them!

We got the group to pick up points off the main path on the approach to the bwlch. By which time the snow had turned into a mini Blizzard, and the wind was starting to knock us about. As we headed up to the Bwlch, my mind was made up, as some of the group were switching off to the navigation, and focusing more on survival. So I made a call to head down early.

I always find these calls tough ones to make, but given the the weather had well and truly lived up to the forecast. After we walked back to the hut and had a brew, I offered to suit up for round two, yet somehow the group’s spirit had been dampened, I can’t think of what did that.

Anyway, the group covered a lot, and after yesterdays day nav, I met them at 9pm for a short night nav session. Where they all proved that they can take and walk on a bearing, as well as pace and use contours. I even managed to get them down for last orders in the Pen Y Gwryd, they were on holiday after all.

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