Friday, June 29, 2007

Mid Life Crisis - The Reality

Tryfan Sunday Morning
Originally uploaded by markhsal.
This mountain is Tryfan, the lowest of the 15 Welsh 3,000 foot mountains. I have climbed this mountain many times when younger - in fact, when my friends and I were going to spend the weekend in the mountains, we would climb this rock on a Friday evening just to loosen up. In those days, just turning up at the foot of a mountain would guarantee it would be climbed.

Last weekend, I thought it would be fun to meet up with someone who was attempting the 15 peak challenge - that is, all 15 peaks in 24 hours (something I did when I was about 19 or 20) at the top of Tryfan, or if possible, up on the Glyders which are connected to Tryfan by Bristly Ridge.

So I packed the car, kitted out the girls and off we went. 2 hours later we caught sight of Tryfan as we approached from Capel Curig and I began to feel the heart begin to race. I have always loved the mountains and walking, and I could almost taste the anticipation. Weather was not great, but certainly not as bad as I've known it in North Wales, so with boots and the correct gear on, we started up.

About an hour later, and still only half way up the north ridge, I finally admitted what my body had been telling me for the past 30 minutes - I'm 54 not 24! Physically, I felt awful and I knew that there was no option but to descend, otherwise we would all have been in danger. The weather was also taking a turn for the worse, and so we came down.

All was not lost, however, as I knew of a couple of walks that we could do, and in the end we did a turn around Cwm Idwal, but I am left with the realisation that no longer will things come so easy.

If I'm ever to get to the top of the mountains again, I'm going to have to train and work for it. My target now is August when I have a week's holiday and I intend to do Snowdon! Strolling across the West Pennine Moors or cycling the canals and stopping at every canalside pub is not going to do it for me.

There are some pictures of the weekend here if you are interested.


sandegaye said...

Loved the pictures.. some beautiful countryside!

Jen said...

Gorgeous pictures! I completely relate to the wake up call. Good luck training for August!