Monday, 27 December 2010

2010/11 even snowier winter!

Wed 1 Dec
Visit to Snailbeach, Stiperstones, the village and Stiperstones Inn. Climbed the iced up and snowy summit tor from Snailbeach. Met a yg woman with her dog and mountain board with wheels taken off and used as a snow board. Area of lead mining in the 19th century.

Friday 3 Dec
First walk from Hope Bowdler to Caer Caradoc via Willstone Hill and its rocky outcrop. Snow, wind and very cold.

Sunday 5 Dec
The day before my return to work after breaking my left collar bone. Climb from Bwlch Oerddrws towards Glasgwm. Too much soft snow to make the summit, so turned back about halfway along the N edge of the forest that had been clear felled apart from many clumps of trees that were left.

Sunday 26 Dec A Boxing Day walk with a difference and with a dghtr!
Soft, deep snow on this walk with Becky from below the normal sharp corner on the mt road to Bala. Snow on the steepening road meant that we parked with two other cars about 500 m away, on the tarmac free of snow. Wading, swimming and ploughing through the snow on the higher ground was very hard work. I greatly appreciated the trail blazing by Becky so that I could put my boots in her footprints. She often offered to break the trail to help the old man keep up with her and she was always uncomplaining. She later said, "It was just nice to be out in the big mountains and in the snow once more." A few times I put my hand down and it disappeared up to my armpit! You then had to struggle, swim and roll around before you could stand up and take the next floundering step! Snow up to halfway up the fencing and deeper in places. Reached summit Foel Hafod-fynydd at 689 metres

I made the mistake of walking N to get out of the strong and v cold S wind and then deciding to explore the attractive looking ridge and minor summit at the end of it. We then had a real battle with the snow traversing above the steep ground, below the ridge we had followed up; on through the deep snow to find the footpath that led onto the ascent/descent track and safety. We should have returned from the 689 m summit the same way that we had come. Deep snow and long grass meant that, at one stage, we were breaking through an upper crust of snow into air beneath!

Back home, Becky let the cat out of the bag over my mountain omissions and failings. She gleefully reported to everyone that I had tried to put on my overtrousers on a snowy hillside, only to discover that they wouldn't fit over my big winter boots! She remembered that I also went sliding down one slope with my ice axe uselessly still strapped to the rucsac. Earlier, I had poo pooed the idea of getting the axe in my hand when Becky got hers ready for business. I was also trying out new gloves from the Meiron Mill in Dinas. Snow balled up on them and got under the fingers flap. My ultrafleece suit and other layers were warm when on the move but also attracted the snow but slid off my black nylon waiscoat or gilert. My heavy winter jacket was rolled up in my rucsac ready for raging blizzard conditions - that we didn't get.

That day saw a very strong S wind, yet very cold. But it portended what came the next day - the thaw set in.

Saturday 8 January 2011
I had a great walk from Eisteddfa Gurig on the A44 to Y Garn 684m, a hill I last climbed on the 30 August 1982, that I remember absolutely nothing about! I then went on to Pumlumon Fawr where I had mum's cheese roll. It was wonderfully and bitterly cold with the strong W wind that meant the wind chill temp must have been at least -10C. I had base layer, corduroy shirt, ultrafleece studded shirt, ultrafleece zipped jacket, all topped out with my very heavy, blue winter mountaineering jacket. Even then, when heading into the ferocious wind, I really needed my silk balaclava on to block the draughts zipping through the gaps between hood and face. I've never known that before! I only saw two other young guys on the way up, as I was coming down.

Saturday, 11 December 2010

Kings Kids thoughts

This was an enjoyable evening of Israeli dance, music and verses from the Bible performed by mostly young Israelis who were all, also, Messianic Jews (Jewish Christians). Therefore, all had an unshakeable conviction that God had chosen only themselves, the People of Israel, for a special blessing and favour from the Lord. Only this tiny portion of God created humanity was to be treated as special, as God's Chosen People. All the other 99% of humankind is very plain and ordinary. Therefore, God shows partiality, favouritism, that is hardly in line with God being a God of justice, treating everyone the same.

It is also an unfortunate impression that Israel is a cut above all the other peoples of the world. It indicates that Israel has a certain hubris. Christianity also feels that it, alone is the true faith. Some Christians say they are the new Israel, the new Chosen People of God (replacement theology, I understand). Their faith alone is the manifestation of God's will; is the true Kingdom of God. They are the true city set on a hill; sometimes known as manifest destiny, who have a special favour and relationship with God. Therefore, the majority of humankind are second class citizens.

The evening was also noted for the leader of Kings Kids speaking with approval that one of the brothers was to enter the Israeli Defence Force in a few weeks time. The 16 year old young man in the dance group also told me how he was looking forward to entering the army. Therefore, Messianic Jews deny the Old Testament assertion, "Not by might, nor by power but by my Spirit, says the Lord" (Zech 4 v 6). The spirit of Jesus, that should include non-violence but never does, goes out of the window in favour of military might, great power and force. You don't talk and compromise and make friends of Arabs, Palestinians, Muslims, Hamas, Hezbullah, you just grind their noses in the dirt and make even more vociferous enemies of your neighbours. Extraordinary!

The evening was also noted for use of the quote from the Bible, that we are"to pray for the peace of Jerusalem." The context is never quoted but, it goes on as, "May they prosper who love you. Peace be within your walls,and security within your towers." (Psalm 122 v 6, 7). This is often quoted by Messianic Jews and born again Christians (the true believers) but, the verses strike me as fair enough if the literal interpretation is taken, that Jerusalem is never to be the subject of war - ever again. However, it again shows God as biased, showing favouritism and only interested in peace for one capital city out of the 193 nations of the world. All the other 192 can have struggles, conflict and wars, as far as God is concerned. Again, quite extraordinary!

However, the leader of Kings Kids on the evening, told me that it meant praying for the return of Christ. My wife said it was to do with the people of Jerusalem finding true peace through making their peace with God through the Lord Jesus Christ.