23.10.14

Llandudno and the Snowdonia railways, part 4

Snowdon Mountain Railway.
Too windy to summit
Day 7: Snowdon, second attempt!
It was my last full day, so I had a second go at ascending Snowdon. Not such an early tart this time, so it was a mini full Welsh breakfast and down the hill to catch the 9.16 X5 to Caernarfon, via Bangor. At Caenarfon I caught the 88 (one an hour, on the hour) to Llanberis and got there in plenty of time. Unfortunately, it was too windy to travel to the top, so the train was only going 5/8 up - to Rocky Valley. Secretly I was a bit relieved as I'm not good with heights, especially when you're the highest thing for miles! With all my discounts the ticket worked out at £16.80 (I'd bought a Great Little Trains of Wales discount card and this gave me 20% off). So, to kill time until the 12.30 departure, I watched the film about the railway in the little cinema.

Snowdon Mountain Railway.
Inside the carriage
The coach was divided into compartments and I was in H. Just as we were about to set off a coach load of Japanese tourists arrive, with cameras and selfie sticks, and occupied the front of the train, we were by the engine, a diesel called George.
Snowdon Mountain Railway.
12 George
   
So, we trundled up the slope slowly, over viaducts and passing waterfalls until the landscape became quite barren. After passing another train coming down we stopped at Rocky Valley, then edged a little further on so we could see Llanberis Pass, from above. We weren't allowed out so had to take pictures through the glass windows.

Snowdon Mountain Railway.
Llanberis Pass - spot the road!
Back down on terra firma (we exited through the gift shop), I'd again missed the departure of the Lake railway so caught an S2 Sherpa bus through the Llanberis Pass trying to spot where we'd just been, up in the clouds. At Bews-y-Coed again I caught the X1 to Llandudno, had a coffee and toasted teacake in the Coffee Centre (there are lots of very old fashioned cafes there) and was temped by the 'veggie pie' advertised on a board outside the Alexandra Hotel (as featured on Hotel Inspector) and the smile of the waitress. It turned out to be a big pasty, filled with what could have been leftover veg in a cheesy mashed potato sauce. I was disappointed not to have had a Welsh rarebit in the time I'd been in Wales! After a pint in Wetherspoon's it was a walk in the rain back to the B&B to watch part 2 of The Apprentice.

Snowdon Mountain Railway.
Compartment H, at the top of our climb 
Day 8: to Bury
After a leisurely breakfast, I ambled to the station via a few charity shops to het the train to Manchester. I got the 135 bus to Bury and after a coffee and Bakewell tart (£3 deal) in the Art Gallery, made my way to my sister's.

More photos on Flickr.


 
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