It is hard to believe we’ve been doing this annual Xmas walk for 24 years on and off. It all started when our family decided to do their own thing after the passing of the patriarch and so we started by taking our young children (correctly equipped) up Pen-Y-Fan and having lunch at the top where possible.
Over the years as they have grown through the teenage ‘don’t want to go’ stage, we have witnessed glorious sunshine, deep snow, glacial ice and like today, very high winds. We have always prepared for the worst and hoped for the best and thanks to the basic prep of gear and clothing, we’ve never had a disappointing trip.
Returning home afterwards glowing, healthy and with an appetite to do the the turkey justice plus of course a good nights sleep.
However the number of ‘Sunday walkers in their street clothes’ who tackle this peak and others like it in weathers like this never cease to amaze us. We’ve seen children carried on their fathers shoulders near the top who were almost blue. People falling over on heels with soaked jeans and it is always an awkward moment to know when to step in for safety sake and offer ‘unwelcome advice’.
This trip was probably the least spectacular in many ways. Although the wind was around the 25mph mark and visibility on the top minimal, there was a marked decrease in the number of those up there and for the first time in many years, very few people wished us, or replied with a jolly ‘Merry Christmas’.
However here’s a very rough video of the the 2 hour walk. We parked at the Storey Arms, walked up to Corn Du where the wind was pulling Rose and the Dog to the edge, and so after summiting Pen-Y-Fan we decided to return down the tourist track.
The day prior and after saw sheet ice and snow and more spectacular and beautiful weather, so in many respects we were lucky.