Abergavenny ex-soldier's Wales wild weather trek 'like Falklands yomp'
A FALKLANDS War veteran has completed a gruelling 100-mile walk across the Black Mountains in conditions he likened to ‘yomping’ on the islands 30 years ago.
Ian Waddell, 74, a night porter at the Angel Hotel Abergavenny braved torrential rain last week to complete the walk, raising more than £2,000 for the British Limbless Ex-Servicemen’s Association (Blesma) with money still coming in.
Mr Waddell started his challenge on Monday from Carreg Cennen Castle just south of Llandeilo at the extreme western point of the Black Mountains, before he made his way across the mountains and back to the Angel in Abergavenny.
MrWaddell, said: “There wasn’t much left in the tank by then, but I was grateful for the lads and lasses who work with me at the Angel who came out on a daily basis to walk with me.
“I don’t think I could have done it without their support, especially as some of them had never walked that far before.
“Winds were gusting at between 50 and 60mph and visibility was down to 30 yards in some cases as I totalled 20,000 feet in climbs and descents, walking over Pen y Fan, the highest point in South Wales in torrential rain.
“I did intend to do a blog from my mobile phone but that was the first casualty of the rain.
“It got waterlogged and completely useless.”
Mr Waddell is no stranger to long distance walking.
He completed a 50-mile walk for Ty Hafan last year and some years ago walked 2,000 miles around England.
The active pensioner said of the challenge: “I enjoy walking, especially in the Welsh scenery even if it is quite challenging. While I can still do it, I will carry on.”
However, he admitted “it will be a while before I contemplate something like that again”.