For today’s destination, I’ve chosen the Cadair Idris, a mountain located in Snowdonia National Park in Wales. The Cadair Idris is a beautiful natural anomaly; long thought to be a dormant volcano, the valley at the summit is actually the result of a cirque glacier. The lake is called Llyn Cau, and the summit, 892 meters up, is named Penygadair (both wonderfully Welsh names!).
But while the emerald mountain and glacial lake are certainly beautiful sights, what really intrigues me is the mythology behind the Cadair Idris.
The summit is believed to have once been the home of a giant named, unsurprisingly, Idris, the King of Meirionnydd. The giant was a Welsh astronomer who used the Cadair Idris as an armchair, with lake Llyn Cau as the seat. It is said that anyone who sleeps alone on the slopes of the mountain will return either a poet, struck with inspiration, or, to those who lack a creative soul, a madman, driven insane by the howling winds of the mountain. This tradition was apparently originated by bards, who would spend the night in hopes of gaining artistic insight.
If I ever get to Wales, this will definitely be my number 1 destination! I’m planning a killer picnic by the lake, and I might even attempt to spend the night on the mountainside. If I do, I’ll let you know which way things go. 🙂