Tryfan stands tall(er)

Last week I wrote about an expedition to resurvey the height of Tryfan using modern GPS technology – the same technology the Ordnance Survey uses to map the country. Well, it was a great success and here is an account from John, Graham and Myrddyn. You can also watch an interview with our very own Mark Greaves on the BBC website.

The morning began dark and grey as we drove into the car park at Ogwen cottage, dark because it was just after 5am and grey because a fine drizzle had fallen on the valley.

Early morning cloud began to clear as they reached the summit

Early morning cloud began to clear as they reached the summit

As we emerged from our vehicles clouds of midges descended for breakfast; this promised to be a hard day. We needn’t have worried though. The team of Mark Greaves (Ordnance Survey), Chris Dearden and Brian Jones (BBC), Alun Pugh (Snowdonia Society), Llion Iwan & Stephen Edwards (CREAD) and Mark Handford (Mountain Guide) and ourselves assembled and set off for the summit.

With only a small stop for a live breakfast broadcast from Chris, we were on the summit for 08.00hr and the equipment was then put in place and data collection commenced. To herald this historic occasion the sun pierced the thick mist and within half-an-hour a wide vista of mountains presented itself and the sun shone from a blue sky.

Suddenly, our spirits lifted.

The three hours of waiting, while the GPS collected data, passed quickly, our attention focussed by radio and television interviews. Finally, with the vigil over, we descended the mountain and then made our way to the Snowdonia Society’s headquarters at Ty Hwll where Mark processed the results.

Graham, John and Mark pose with 'Adam' and 'Eve' at Tryfan's peak.

Graham, John and Mark pose with 'Adam' and 'Eve' at Tryfan's peak.

With the local press and BBC now all present the result was announced. Tryfan had confounded its doubters and came in at 917.5m, a couple of metres higher than its current map height!

John Barnard, Myrddyn Phillips and Graham Jackson

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