Snowdonia is a Mecca for scrambling. Cold, hard, narrow ridges and moonscape summits formed of bristly, angular rock make for a dramatic landscape of loveless, effortless charm. One such ridge on the Snowdon Massif has a savage reputation. This “Red Ridge” occupies the darker side of a hillwalker’s psyche. The sight of its serrated, narrow spine and its jagged pinnacles send a shiver of fear down the spines of the uninitiated. This is the very antithesis of the choo-choo train that carts reams of tourists to Snowdon’s ants nest summit every year. This notorious ridge is named Crib Goch.
It is magnificent. The technical difficulties are actually quite low and the scrambling on the pinnacles is fun without undue stress. Yes, the ridge is narrow. But in favourable conditions it is no more likely to kill you than the drive to its base. It is just one of many superb grade one scrambles in the vicinity of the Snowdon Massif. The best way to get between them? Run.
The idea of linking various classic scrambles together is not a new one, but it is the preserve of confident mountain goers. Trail running continues to grow in popularity and is a wonderfully liberating way to get about in the mountains.
So, once Crib Goch has been conquered, why not continue with Crib Y Ddysgl and onto Snowdon itself for more of the same? After Wales’ highest mountain, The Snowdon Horseshoe drops down the Watkin Path after the summit. Don’t do this. Far better though is to descend the Pyg Track to the confluence of Glaslyn and Llyn Llydaw and tackle the slabby entertainment of the Y Gribin ridge before taking on the glorious but easy scramble to Y Lliwedd. Still not sated? Descend to Pen Y Gwryd, climb onto the shoulder of the Glyders and throw in the most challenging and entertaining half an hour of the day on Bristly Ridge. By the time you have done all of this, you can be sure that any pint, pie or pudding will have been earned at The Vaynol Arms in Nant Peris. Cheers!