Top Peak Indeed…….


Tryfan and Ogwen Valley, North Wales

A challenging climb,  a revered mountain venue for Rock Climbers, the striking outline of Tryfan, with a height of 3010ft. it is the most dominant of the Glyder range, part of the Snowdonia massif.

It is suggested that the name Tryfan is a derivation of ‘Top Peak’.  Only memories now for me of some spectacular days climbing, but still one of my ‘Top Peaks’ …. and of another memory….. it was often  rather wet, which made climbing interesting!

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

11th July

(C) David Oakes 2020

Lake and Mountains… a magic mix


Late evening on the shores of Llyn Padarn, Snowdonia, Gwynedd, North Wales.

Looking up the lake towards the famous Llanberis Pass with the Snowdon massive to the right.  Doesn’t look so high from here but I can assure you its quite a hike to the top. The real name for Mount Snowdon is its Welsh name….  ‘Yr Wyddfa.

It also looks rather quiet and tranquil, not always that way as the Pass and Mountains are a magnet for climbers and tourists most of the year.  But like everywhere else under lockdown right now it will be quiet and peaceful.

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

27th March

(C) David Oakes 2020

Silent Sunday….. Off to Church on Saint David’s Day


Valle Crucis Abbey, Llantysilio, Denbighshire, North Wales

As it is Saint David’s Day, the Patron Saint of Wales, I thought it would be great to share some images of a Welsh Abbey this Silent Sunday

Located in a deep sheltered valley just to the North West of Llangollen are these rather majestic ruins of Valle Crucis Abbey.  It true name is the Abbey Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The valley is also appropriately known as the Valley of the Cross.



Valle Crucis dates back to 1201, like so many of our monasteries and major churches it was built on the foundations of much older and smaller chuch.

It was built by Madog ap Gruffydd Maelor the then Prince of Powys Fadog.  A Cistercian Monastery it had all the makings of a prosperous foundation, but not everything went smoothly and it suffered due to various political and religious conflicts as well as the troubles of the Welsh Wars instigated by Edward 1st of England.

But of course, as was the way of most monasteries, it was Henty VIII and his dissolution of the Monasteries act of 1536 that brought about its destruction.

I guess we have to be grateful that today  we can still explore the Chapter House and trace the extensive foundations of what must have been a major construction.


Worth a visit for anyone visiting this part of Wales

But of course on this special day….

Best wishes this Saint David’s Day to all our Welsh friends


1st March

(C) David Oakes 2020