There are 15 mountains in Wales over 3000 feet. Unfortunately they all lie just within walking distance of one another. The Welsh 3000s challenge takes in Crib Goch, Snowdon, the Glyders, Tryfan and the Carnedd range, plus a few more along the way. It involves 30 miles of walking and 3,500m of ascent and descent. At best it is a long day in the hills, at worst it continues into the night.
We began shortly after 6am making good progress onto the treacherous Crib Goch ridge, beginning to pick off the other 3000 challenge teams who hadn’t enjoyed such a long lie in. The summit was gained in around 45 minutes, and watches started for the summit to summit time, our target being 10 hours. Snowdon in deep mist was reached around 7.30am - a quick photo, bite to eat, then the charge off the hill following the train line down, before plunging down the steep valley sides to Nant Peris campsite.
A steady climb to Eliwdar Fawr followed - as the porridge oats kicked in Hammertime Hammerton put down the hammer, only to be restrained by strict team orders to “keep it together”. Chilly and misty on top, having gained the ridge, it was time for team Alpkit Adventure to test out their new mountain trainers, and “leg it” along the ridge, picking off Y Garn, the Glyders and Tryfan. A sharp descent to Lyn Ogwen was followed by a sausage roll and welcome lunch stop before the huge climb up onto the Carnedd ridge.
We hit the first of the final 7 summits 8 hours into the challenge which made us think, the 10 hours summit to summit that we’d set ourselves might be a bit tight. However, once up on the ridge, our legs still seemed to be holding out and so we were able to cover the last 6 summits in just under 2 ½ hours to finish in 9hours and 39minutes. Once the final summit picture had been taken it was just the small matter of 6km back to the car where we’d stored some very welcome supplies of chocolate, coke and jelly babies.
With only a few days to go to the big race, we really glad to successfully completed the 3000ers. Roll on Monday!