Week 13 at Plas y Brenin

30Aug11
  • Cake of the week – Chocolate Eclairs!
  • Interesting Fact – About 18,000 years ago the Migneint area in Snowdonia was covered by an ice sheet c.1400m depth!
  • Best Thing – Geth & Kirsty’s Wedding!
  • Work Highlight – Canoeing on the Menai Strait
  • Best Outdoor – Joining 6 Brenin instructors on a MTB downhill course…

Summary: Full week’s course this week – Canoeing with Dave Luke! Legend…

Poling a canoe on the Menai Strait

Poling a canoe on the Menai Strait

Monday – Friday – CANOEING
I was lucky enough to spend a whole week as a student on a Brenin Canoeing course. Starting off on the Brenin pond and lake on the first day we ventured much further afield for the rest of the week…
The Menai Strait was incredible; noticeably ferry gliding from pillar to pillar under the Menai Bridge whilst getting caught in rogue fishing lines and observing our instructor Dave boulder around a pillar in an effort to avoid further entanglement! Phew! P.S. the swellies are scary. In the evening I attended my first (weekly) Snowdonia Mountains & Rivers talk at the Brenin hosted by non other than environmental expert Mike Raine.
Moel Eilio circuit - fell run fun! Courtesy of Tom Livingstone

Moel Eilio circuit - fell run fun! Courtesy of Tom Livingstone

On Wednesday we spent time on Llyn Padarn learning more about solo paddling, trim, sailing canoes, and various rescues. The sailing looked promising as we battled against the wind to construct the vessel, however immediately upon launch the wind died and it simply rained lots!
(Wednesday evening I escaped for a run up Moel Eilio with Tom – some great photos can be seen here…)
Thursday saw us embark on a white water mission with Karl on the river Dee – starting from near the Chainbridge Inn just below the Serpent’s Tail we made our way down to JJ’s (Mile End Mill) – some great Grade 2 rapids, and I didn’t get wet! Woop!
In the evening I joined quite a few of the instructors on a local downhill MTB track! With some donning full face helmets, and looking more like American Football players, I looked perhaps slightly less than prepared in my beach shorts, waterproof jacket, and cleated hard tail! ‘Cross-country whippet?’ Still, a controlled descent – I’m still working on the downhill stuff…
Later on was the old CA team’s leaving party in Bryn Engan; much drink and merriment!
Ready to sail the canoes down the Afon Dwyryd

Ready to sail the canoes down the Afon Dwyryd

Friday, the last day and what a cracker – we set off from near Maentwrog area and set off down the Afon Dwyryd. Learning the dark art of tracking was fun, but racking up for lunch and getting a Kelly Kettle on the boil for a coffee (and some freshly picked blackberries) was a splendid end to the week.
In the evening I had my second shift on the bar – particularly proud of the cappuccino 😉
My first cappuccino effort from the Snowdon Bar, Plas y Brenin

My first cappuccino effort from the Snowdon Bar, Plas y Brenin

Saturday – WEDDING!
So, there’s nothing like being made an official wedding photographer just 3 days before a wedding 🙂 Today was Geth & Kirsty’s big day! Good friends from uni, I’m really happy for them both and the wedding was a great excuse for a lovely ceremony in a church near Bethel, Anglesey. Thereafter food, drink, and a dance! Thanks to them for a great day.
Sunday – CENTRE DAY
A quiet day – after a lie-in, I sorted some stuff out around the house and awaited the visit from Mum & Dad that afternoon. With an hour to go before their arrival, I realised I needed to deliver a card to Bethesda! I can now confirm that my new road bike is worth its (light) weight in gold as I pushed 1 hour 5 mins to Bethesda and back (20 miles, and plenty of up and down over the Ogwen Valley pass).
Wedding Presents - Geth & Kirsty's Wedding

Wedding Presents - Geth & Kirsty's Wedding

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