14 Peaks, 22 Miles, 14,000 Feet of ascent . . . 1 Weekend
The Welsh 3000s: here’s your chance to climb all the mountains of Wales inside the space of a single weekend. This trek is arguably the ultimate challenge event, combining true challenge with wilderness, excitement and awe – and all inside the space of one weekend!
What are the Welsh 3000s?
The fifteen mountains of Wales are all (conveniently) located in Snowdonia. They are: Snowdon 1085m, Garnedd Ugain 1066m, Crib Goch 923, Elidir Fawr 923m, Y Garn 947m, Glyder Fawr 999m, Glyder Fach 994m, Tryfan 915m, Pen Yr Ole Wen 978m, Carnedd Dafydd 1044m, Carnedd Llewelyn 1064m, Foel Grach 974m, Garnedd Uchaf* 976m, Foel Fras 942m.
*Garnedd Uchaf is the 15th peak and is contentious as such. Some say that a mountain must be at least 3000 feet (914m) above sea level and require at least 50m of re-ascent from it’s closest relative plateau… But Garnedd Uchaf is only 46m above it’s nearest saddle. Others will argue a mountain is any peak over 610m and needing 30m of ascent – and in this category Garnedd Uchaf fits the bill!
Outline strategy for success:
- Start early
- Start slowly
- Eat lots
- Drink lots
Some thoughts on Equipment and Wet Weather Preparation
It has been known to rain occasionally in Wales – and it could be that this is the greatest challenge that you’ll be facing on the hill. Bad weather just needs the right mind-set combined with the best preparation – and it can be overcome!
Let’s start with a guiding principle: NOTHING IS WATERPROOF – and this begins with your expensive Goretex coat and extends to the boots you’ll be wearing and to the sack you’ll be carrying. It’s worth at this stage being paranoid about this.
In addition steer clear of all things cotton and whatever you use make sure it’s comfortable.
Your rucksack will need 2 waterproof liners – one for the whole sack plus one for your sleeping bag/dry kit – also make sure that your hat and gloves live in their own wp bag – and the same for your wallet/mobile phone.
If you’re camping you should carry 2 x small towels or flannels – one is for yourself and one is for drying the inside of your tent. Also useful for drying yourself and for taking care of your feet is some foot talc – weighs next to nothing and is a real treat!
*The Fifteenth Peak
Some people refer to this as the Fifteen Peaks Challenge – or refer to the fifteen Welsh 3000s. It’s true – there are 15 peaks that are 3000 feet or higher and Garnedd Uchaf is the “fifteenth peak”. But for it to count as one of the three thousanders it needs to have a relative height gain of at least 150 feet and alas Garnedd Uchaf climbs around 100 feet from the surrounding plateau. Hence we will walk by it but not bother walking the 30m or so to touch its summit.