Page last updated at 07:55 GMT, Monday, 15 March 2010

Tryfan may soon lose its elite mountain status

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A team of surveying enthusiasts say they plan to measure Tryfan in Snowdonia later this year

A mountain in Snowdonia is set to be re-measured and may lose its status as an elite summit in Wales.

Modern technology will check whether Tryfan in the Ogwen Valley is actually 915m, or 3,002ft, as it currently appears on the map.

The mountain is listed as one of the "elite" group of 14 peaks in Wales that are more than 3,000ft high.

The Snowdonia Society said Tryfan was still a "wonderful summit", no matter how high it actually was.

John Barnard, from Mold, one of those involved in the re-measuring, said there was a three-metre margin of error on current maps.

"With modern technology we can measure things within a centimetre of accuracy," he said.

Tryfan, Snowdonia
It's a wonderful mountain with some fantastic views, that won't change a jot... it has a special part in the heart of anyone who enjoys climbing mountains in Wales
Alun Pugh, director, Snowdonia Society

"Basically we are going to use a positioning system and put it on the summit to collect data, and then that information will be processed through a computer, he added.

Even though he is fascinated by the technology that makes the re-measuring possible, Mr Barnard admitted he would not like to see the mountain become less of a peak.

"The mountain will still be there whether it's 2,999ft or 3,000 ft, it'll make no difference, it is still an iconic mountain, although it might come off a certain list," he added.

Alun Pugh, the director of the Snowdonia Society, a members-based charity working to ensure the beauty and diversity within the Snowdonia National Park, said Tryfan had inspired generations of landscape artists as well as mountaineers.

Challenges

"That's partly because the mountain is such a superbly beautiful mountain, and also because of its status as one of the elite group of 14 Welsh 3,000 ft peaks," he said.

Mr Pugh said that for nearly a century people had "done the 14 peaks, it is one of the mountaineering challenges of Wales".

If it turned out that Tryfan was not as high then maybe that route would have to change, he added.

Whatever the outcome, he said climbers would still enjoy Tryfan's challenges.

"I'd think we'd all still enjoy scrambling along its north ridge, or climbing on the east face, or walking up the south ridge to the wonderful summit," he said.

"It's a wonderful mountain with some fantastic views, that won't change a jot... it has a special part in the heart of anyone who enjoys climbing mountains in Wales," he added.

The mountain will be re-measured in June.



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