As so perfectly demonstrated by this poor little penguin and his unhelpful, mocking friends, venturing out in this cold, icy weather can be treacherous! Even a simple slip on an icy pavement can result in at least a jarred back, grazed knees or a banged bottom (not to mention a dented ego!) - or worse still a fractured wrist or even hip which may take months to heal (my husband is looking at 3 months in a cast after fracturing his scaphoid - a very small bone in the wrist! OK, we were snowboarding!!!). However, whilst it is tempting to stay snuggled up indoors, this is not always possible and even in the cold weather our bodies benefit from a little bit of fresh air and exercise.
With a few simple, sensible precautions you can avoid the fate of the penguin...
Now, how about another look at that penguin...
Winter Walking in North Wales
It might be bitterly cold and frosty, but we managed to make the most of the glorious sunshine that we've had recently with a trip to Snowdonia.
People have raved about the Moel Eilio Ridge, and whilst we've been up and down Snowdon several times and looked across to this horseshoe, we'd never actually tried it. So, after a good breakfast and with a bright sunny day ahead of us, we set off to Llanberis. Wrapped up in hats, gloves and walking boots, maps and snacks in our daypack, we set off. Five minutes later we stopped to strip off all our warm layers, but one needs to be suitably prepared! I am frequently reminded that it can turn nasty up on the hills very quickly and as I know quite a few people on the 'Search and Rescue' and 'Mountain Rescue' teams it would be more than a little embarrassing (not to mention stupid!) to be caught out.
With much backtracking we navigated our way across a boggy field, much to the amusement of the spectating sheep and their owner who was watching from his window. Then a bit of a long uphill slog, following a rough track up a fence-line. It was necessary to have some regular breaks - obviously just taking in the views across Llanberis (nothing to do with being puffed out!).
The climb was definitely worth it when we reached the Moel Eilio summit. The circular shelter was an ideal place to eat our snacks - and would have been even better had we remembered the flask of tea that we left in the kitchen! There were spectacular views across the Menai Straits to Anglesey; we could just see the RAF base at Valley, in front of Holyhead Mountain. In the other direction we could see all the way down the Llyn Peninsula, taking in the stunning scenery that North Wales has to offer. After a quick stop and a few photos later (it was too cold to hang around!) we descended along the grassy ridge, taking in the summits of Foel Gron and Foel Goch, before dropping down onto a track back to the car.
As we drove home with rosy cheeks and achy legs I realised why Moel Eilio is a favourite with a few of my patients, particularly the fell-runners. Who knows, maybe I'll have a go at running it sometime - but I think I'll wait until it's a bit less icy!
Eich Ceiropractydd yng Nghlinig Ceiropracteg Llangefnii