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Wild Swimming in Snowdonia

Updated: Apr 8, 2022

Llyn Cau | Cadair Idris | Mar'21


With lockdown lifted here in Wales we managed to get out for an evening hike up to Cadair Idris this week, and what an evening it was! I was weary to leave earlier in the day as the Easter Holidays have just begun and it was forecast to be the warmest day of the year….so hoping to dodge the crowds we set out early evening. Luckily our plans worked out and we ended up with the whole llyn to ourselves to enjoy a very brief swim in the dark waters of Llyn Cau and a quick painting session after (which was cut short by a swarm of middgies descending on us!).

At the heart of Cadair Idris sits a mythical glacial lake, Llyn Cau. It was here I took my first wild swim of the year in Snowdonia. The first swim of many I hope to make throughout this year, as lockdown has lifted in Wales and the weather is starting to improve (as best it can for the UK).

I've been drawn to Cadair Idris ever since my first hike up here one summer, and intrigued further once hearing of the mythical tales tied around the landscape; Welsh Legend has it that Llyn Cau is a bottomless lake, home to a welsh dragon, which was imprisoned there by King Arthur himself. Sitting at the edge of the llyn on a still spring evening, it’s easy to see how the landscape lends itself to these mythical tales, as the giant stone slabs of Cadiar Idris plunge into the still and eerie black waters of Llyn Cau.

This Blog will hopefully be part of a series on wild swims across Snowdonia, the Cambrian Hills and further afield. I will also be documenting these wild swims and plein air paintings further on the instagram account @wildswim_cymru.

A reflective journal of sorts- these blog posts will hopefully provide an insight into my creative process, inspired by these meditative moments in the water… well as hold me accountable to actually get out and explore these icy cold waters now that lockdown has lifted in Wales!

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