Hide Articles List

9 articles on this Page

FESTINIOG.

LLAXinV.ST.

TOWYN.

"DOING" SNOW DON, BY A PARTY…

News
Cite
Share

"DOING" SNOW DON, BY A PARTY OF THREE, FROM LLANDUDNO. A correspondent has forwarde I to us the following account of how he and his two friends made the ascent of the famous mountain of Snowdon -the highest ob- ject of Welsh tourists. Two personal friends and myself have been in the ha- bit of paying a flying visit to Llandudno for the last two or three ni, iiid every succeeding year we have found its varied attractions itiereztiiii, -b;irriiig the pro. menade, the pier, and the brass bands, which, if any- thing, get wordO. instead of better. I must tell you that one of us is very tall, the second very short, and the third moderately stout, but of mid- dle height, and we all live in the same town when lo- C'ltod fairly at home. I don't know how it was, but somehow WJ never be- fore could make up our minds to hazard the ascent of :;n"w,1>II. nnti! th" otht'r .1,lI'. We are not ddci,!1It in an admiration for the picturesque and beautiful, IVIle- ther in nature or in art but somehow our enthusiasm was not sufficiently great to induce us to scale a momi- tiiusoine l'2rl0 yard-in perpendicular hehfh' on pur- po>i to see the sun ris<% or to be euveloped iu dense f"g or vapour. We knew the thing ought to lie done we knew we should he look-id down upon with contempt and derision by all the petty striplings who had left their desks iu Birmiugb un or Manchester to scale tlie precipitous sides of the mighty Snowdon we know all this, i repeat, but still we could not hriug ourselves up to the climbing point. We strolled along the beach nt daybreak explored the wonders and mysteries of the Great as well as the Little Orme's Heads, and we hive actually footed it to Conway Castle and back again— which we deemed a pretty good day's work—for us. Still we had never been upon Snowdon," and, there- fore, had been nowhere. At last this feeling of inferiority became intolerahle- too much for us to bear; and so, after an afternoon's anxious deliberation, we decided to attempt the won- drous feat, let the consequences to our physical frames be what they might. We also resolved to approach the giant hill by the aide of Llanberis, via Bettwsycoed and Capel Curig. The next morning saw us with our carpet bags, &c., waiting for the Llanrwst train to start; and after being cleverly and adroitly extricated from a booking" di- lemma by Mr. Tall, (Tall is up to a thing or two, I can assure you), we get ensconced in a second-class cafriage ticketed for the old Welih town of Llanrwst. In accom- plishing this, Mr. Stout exhibited much shrewdness, which, however, as the event will shew, must have oozed out of him before we arrived at Llanberis. We were closely packed, like cards in a domino box; and as we had to wait a long time at the Junction (according to rule) before starting, and as the day was hot and bril- liant, with a tropical temperature, the atmosphere of the carriage was a little oppressive. This was not a favour- able beginning, but we bore it like Christian men, and old veteran travellers. Well, at last, the train started up the beautiful Vale, with high mountains on each side, and a broad river rolling dowu in the centre towards the sea. If ever there was a serpentine river, the Conway certainly is one, and the railway possesses just as many folds and windings a3 the river itself. I must say that Mr. Stout had cosily seated himself, face to engine, close by the window, so that when we were almost stifled by the heat, he was coolly sniffling the morning air which came from the river and the hills in question. Of course, we all felt envioxia-mis- chievously envious, and kindly offered to exchange places with him, suggesting that draughts of air were danger- ous to health—that as he was a little delicate, he might catch cold, and so on. It was no go," however, for he was much too stout for our fall talk, and he maliciously kept his seat. I have hinted that the scenery in this Vale is remark- ably fine and beautiful, and particularly on the Carnar- vonshire side of the river. We had a good glass with us, by which we discovered that although the dark woods on the side3 of the hills wore a gorgeous livery of green, that many of the fields in the lowlands and those on the slopes on the hills were most ominously clad in russet brown. How the sheep and cattle on those barren slopes managed to pick even a scanty living was more than either Short, Stout, or Tall could make out. On arriving at Llaurwst (a prettily situated town, but with horrid narrow streets), we found that Snowdonian tourists were rather numerous on that particular day, and coach accommodation from Llanrwst being some- what limited, and knowing that coach authorities usu- ally act upon the maxim of first come, first served," we lost no time, on emerging from our locomotive oven, in making our way to theil Eagles." In fact, we had to make a desperate rush, and Short and Stout had to fairly run to keep up with the gigantic strides of Tall, who seemed to make headway as if he were walking upon stilts. In this order we headed a large detach- meut of struggling and panting tourists; and having secured good seats for ourselves, we complacently and eympathizingly (?) looked on at the blank looks and dis- 1 satisfiedmutteringsof those whowere so ruthlessly doom- ed to disappointment. How easy it is to bear with .the sufferings of others! Suffering, however, is the lot of humankind, as we discovered to our cost; for after having had to undergo an inside roasting in the railway carriage, we were now treated to an outside one, having to be perched up on the top of a coach fully half an hour, with the sun's rays nearly perpendicular, and in the middle of a con- fined Hotel yard. It was a situation to be felt, not de- scribed. Jarvey at last made his appearance, and took his box seat with the air of one who feels that he is of some lit- tle consequence in the world, and that he was not dis- poie(I to abate one tittle of his just pretensions. We now passed through splendid and umbrageous scenery, which can scarcely be equalled in the British Islands, and which not only restored our good humour and spirits, but reduced the temperature by at least 20 degrees-in the shade. Bettwsycoed is a perfect gem of a mountait n-wooded, sylvan retreat, and may have worthily been the head quarters of Fanns and Naiads in ancient days, if those mythological beings ever visited this part of the terrestrial sphere. # From Llanrwst to Llanberis is 19 miles, and the scenery along the whole of that route was of itself suf- ficient to have repaid us for the expense and trou- ble of going there, even had WJ been prevented from viewing the landscape from the top of Snowdon itself. When we arrived at Capel Curig, we had a full view of Snowdon, and on arriving at the Hotel the coach turned to the left, in the direction of Penygwryd. This last is a large hotel, stuck right under the foot of Snow- don, the distance from Capel Curig being four miles— along one of the most bleak, barren, and trackless vales that we have ever before met with any. where. At Peuygwrid, the coach halted, when the passengers all rtiiiie(I down, en mfor refreshments, which we all stood much in need of Jarvey, however, was des- potically inclined, and would stand no insubordinate in- dependence and so when the bulk of his fare" had disappeared into the hotel bar-parlour, this knight of the reins slyly drove oil', so that a great many had to run after the coach for fully a mile—panting and swear- ing, I am afraid Jarvey himself looked upon this ras- cally trick as a clever dodge, an original go," to be told in after years in a bar parlour to brother chums, or in the kitchen to the admiring boots, or the fascinated housemaid and waitress. For ourselves, we simply wished him and his whip at—Joppa Yes we did arrive at Llanberi s at last, and right glad we were, I can tell you. An oasis in the midst of Ara- bian I Jeserta could not have been more welcome to lid than wa* the Padaru Villa," as it i< called. Of course we orderod a good dinner, and what was perhaps more singular still, we obtained one, and for which we were charged only a reasonable price Think of that Met, oh ye gourmandizing visitors to the dear BlaiiK Hotel in—why, in any town along the western coadt oi Wales Dinner being over, and in order to the efforts of the gastric juice in its legitimate function*, Tall, Stout, and Short retired to a delightful lawu atta j.ie l to the Villa, where, in spite of Scotch James's I- Counterblast, and George Cruiksluuks vulgar" attack, we enjoyed, in peace aud serenity, a quiet smoke—smooth and placid. In this blissful retreat we were presently joined by all ancieut baker, a gentleman who sported a yellow waist- coat, and a gentleman with a dark eye-" plealIllt com- panions every one." We there cheated old Time out of two clear hours, during which there were cracked se. veral excellent bottles of porter and a few stale jokes, the mail in yellow" winding up with a lecture upon the beauties of Total Abstinence—himself constituting the frightful example." The clock now pointed to the honr of half-past ten, though the party assembled at the Hotel, and who in. tended to make '.he ascent, numbered eleven, and the journey was commenced forthwith. The night was calm and clear, with a beautiful full moon, and for a time all u went happy as a marriage bell, as the saying is. But happiness in this sublunary sphere" is of brief duration, and soon expostulatory ex- clamations were heard on the still night air, such as- Here, you what's the Ltirry or, Dang it, I say, let's atop and rest a bit." Mr. Tall was nearly bent in two; Mr. Short's breath tallied exactly with his name, whilst Mr. Stout was evidently not so very brave as his pedigree would seem to indicate. On the others the "pull" was evidently telling with considerable effect. The man in yellow began to look blue, whilst the baker was done as brown as his own loaves. I'll tell you what it is," exclaims cue, this is the first time I ever went up Snowdon, and I'll be roasted alive (he had rid- den in the railway carriage, you must know) if it isn't the last," As legs weakened, so did resolution and it was evident that some means must be resorted to in or- der to regain lost strength and spirits. To effect this, some plied the brandy flask, whilst others took a dive in the sandwich bag; whilst a stanch old teetotaller aver- red in broken words that in cases of difficulty There —was—no-thing—like coo-old w-.ttei- A plucky old gentleman, as tough as Cooper's Leatherstockiug, ad- vised us all to take it coolly, to husband our strength, and to make a waiting race of it, adding, that climbing up Snowdon mountain was not exactly a thing to be done by starts." One weak, wretched man lay down on the ground in pitiable plight, from sheer exhaustion, and acted—just as any landsman would do during a first storm at sea Still, no one would give in and at last, after a mvst toibom >, and lengthened, though mer- ry ?tntg?le, we all an-iwl safe upon the top of Snow- don. RII-I WO Raw dEhe moon was Still brightly shillÍtI' an,! wo saw! many a beautiful -tar," not indeed of the 4< evening," but of the miming, and the view altogether was of a character which I shall not attempt to describe, and which, I a'n certain, no human being could do, were he to attempt it. It is sufficient for me to say that all of us-~sren the sick gentleman—felt amply repaid for the fatigue which we lud undergone for tour long hours, in the wondrous scene whic\ presented itself before our astonished and a Inuring gaze. Arrived at the top, we separated into groups, every- body doing that which seemed right in his own eves. Some partook of coffee, and bread and cheese; others settled down in various place., and in various attitudes, to await the rising of the sun. Others nestled in cor- ners, and sought Nature's sweet restorer—balmy Bleep;" whilst Air. Tall and Mr. Yellowplush mounted the "perch," and each delivered an am ning lecture from the height thereof, the text being Ponder the faith of thy feet," and in a most winning aud attractive style-a la Spurgeou. I am sorry to say that, as morning approached, the clouds began to rise—thick and heavy and considerable anxiety was felt as to whether we should see .the sun rise after all. The worst forebodings were realized; for bright as the night had been, the early morning turned out to be a cloudy one, accompanied by a strong biting wind (a nipping and a chilling air, as Shakespeare has it) and we soon, then, made up our minds to re- turn. We had arranged to go down on the Beddgelert side, as we wished to visit that famous village, which tradi- tion and Tennyson have made immortal,—and at Llan- beris we had engaged the Guide for that especial ser- vice. Our descent was not devoid of incident, nor, indeed, of peril. Our Guide lay down, when about half way down, and obstinately refllsed to accompany us any fur- ther but a threat not to pay him had a. wonderful in- vigorating effect, and he rallied at once Just as we had crossed the Saddle," one of our par- ty, Mr. Tall, either through dizziness or want of sleep, suddenly lost his balance, and gave us a practical illus- tration of the wheelbarrow trundle, with variations. This manoeuvre he repeated twice afterwards, and threw beautiful somersaults Still his good luck pre lomiua- ted; and when we arrived in Beddgelert he was as lively and as fresh (in spirits) as a young squirrel. Of course we were tired, huugry, and sleepy, when we got in the vicinity of Gelert's Grave; but a ifrst-class breakfast at the Llewelyn," and a good wash, made our Richards themselves again." We felt quite reno- vated and during the morning we paid a visit to Ge- lert's Grave (why isn't the railing of iron, not wood), and Bighed o'er the fate of that faithful houud; and also walked down to Pont Aberglaslyn, and other interesting places. Later in the day, we took a car to Carnarvon and in due time we arrived in Llandudno, more tired, sleepier, but wiser men.

CONWAY. !

FRANCE, SWITZERLAND, AND ITALY-HOW…

[No title]

¡gHiftrUMMnts.

I NEW CAMBRIA-THE WELS:{ COLONY…