The weekend got off to an interesting start - on Thursday 17th the Met Office issued a ‘rare’ red warning for heavy snow across the Brecon Beacons and the Heads of the Valleys. In other words a direct hit upon our destination, Godre Pentre, the Croydon Caving Club cottage in Ystradfellte.
Undaunted, Ray and Lisa set off on the Friday night and made it to their B&B ok - the rest of us set off early Saturday morning and the gritters and ploughs had made a good job of keeping the main roads open. Sally and Adam lead a great walk (with Andy, John, Ray, Lisa, Amy and Jeremy) around the Ystradfellte waterfalls, a winter wonderland of trees straining under the weight of snow. A team of robins was permanently close to hand for clichéd photo shoots. The route involved a river crossing at one point, although we then realised a path was available behind a waterfall.
Em, Janet, Ana and Ellie kindly stocked up on group breakfast goods en route and decided to blaze the trail up to the cottage. Em pushed her car to the limits and overtook the first snow plough of the day. Once the passengers had reached the limits of pushing Em’s car they relented and sheepishly followed the snow plough for the rest of the way.
In the meantime, Baz and Jamie embarked on a joint mission to confuse the participants of the Fan Dance Race by dragging a bodyboard (for surfing) to the summit. Jamie surfed most of the way back down with Baz on hand ready to pick up the pieces. Hector joined us on Saturday evening, with drinks flowing at the New Inn.
On Sunday morning everyone managed to safely descend the staircase in the cottage to devour a mountain of sausages and eggs. Sally and Adam set off early on a walk, whilst the remaining dozen of us walked from the cottage to the top of Fan Llia. The snow didn’t present a challenge under foot, but provided splendid winter views across the Beacons.
Looking forwards to next year, snow chains or 4WD recommended.
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