Helen (heleninwales) wrote,

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Field trip report from last Saturday

What with catching up from a day out on Saturday and then travelling down to Pontypool yesterday and staying overnight in order to get G to his meeting this morning in Caerleon, I've only just got around to posting a few more pictures from the long walk over the mountains.

We met the group in a car park and then walked up the mountain to an old copper mine that I last visited in 1987.

Old mine machinery

G (on the right) and the other geology students examine a piece of old machinery. This contraption enabled the buckets of ore to be sent down the mountain on a ski-lift type arrangement. It wasn't powered. The weight of the full buckets pulled the empty ones back up.

Geologists on a rock outcrop

The group was only small this time. Just the four plus me. It took two days for my legs to recover! We covered 12 miles in a circular walk and as you can see, it wasn't just a smooth level path!


It might just be me, but there's something about this picture that reminds me of the Hattifatteners! :) They are not Hattifatteners, they are actually sundew plants living in a little boggy pond up on a mountain. The soil is so acid and lacking in nutrients that the plants have to eat insects to survive.

Sundew pond

Here's a view of their pond. The sundews are the reddish-brown patches round the edge. They are actually very tiny.

Someone had the bright idea of doing a circular walk, which is why it ended up as 12 miles. Therefore, once we descended from the open mountain, we had to walk alongside the lake Llyn Dinas, where I snapped this fellow...


... until we eventually reached Beddgelert. Here we bought icecreams and sat on a wall for a few minutes while we ate them and then continued along a riverside path that started out deceptively easy, but got a little hairy in places as we walked on up the Aberglaslyn Pass. They had thoughtfully provided metal handholds attached to the rocks at the most precarious point!

Finally arriving back at the cars, we were promptly attacked by a huge swarm of midges. "Get in the car and shut the door!" G cried. "The midges are coming in!"

"But I need to change out of my boots," I replied. I was sitting on the back seat with the door open so I didn't get mud all over the car. "I can't drive in hiking boots, I end up pressing two pedals at once, which is not good."

G took refuge in the car and after I got my boots off and my trainers on, I didn't bother doing up the laces. I jumped into the driving seat, slammed the doors... and realised we had hundreds of midges in the car with us! "Do you think if I drive fast with the windows down, the midges will be sucked out?" I said as we pulled out of the car park.

Fortunately, this strategy did indeed work and we thus escaped without too many itchy bumps. :)

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