As I arrived back at my car I must have looked like a drowned rat.

I’d just endured seven hours solid of heavy rain, howling winds and sleet storms in the Cambrian mountains.

My feet were soaked, my hair was dripping wet and my clothing decidedly soggy.

I was less wet when I did the ice bucket challenge.

And what’s worse I’d checked the forecast the day before but still consciously chose to head out to tackle Pumlumon Fawr and its surrounding peaks in these adverse conditions.

Now that I’m sat in my warm, dry home I’m contemplating whether I made the right decision.

My conclusion – yes.

Don’t get me wrong. The weather was atrocious and it was mostly miserable out on the trails.

After all, there is nothing pleasant about horizontal hail driving into your face like a thousand tiny daggers. Or ice-cold, boggy water seeping through your boots to your bare skin. Or extensive hill fog transforming beautiful vistas into a whiteout.

A poor choice of footing

A poor choice of footing

There are however a few redeeming features to wet weather in the mountains.

Streams and waterfalls swell and rage, taking on a more dramatic appearance. Brief moments when sunlight breaks through the cloud or mist lifts to reveal a view deliver a heightened wow effect.

But the biggest is the challenge.

One of the (many) reasons I love mountains is the physical and mental challenge they pose.

In gnarly weather conditions this is amplified – navigation is more difficult, progress is slower and keeping your spirits high is tricky.

Even breaks become functional – wolfing down a sandwich before it gets too soggy – rather than a pleasure.

Yet all of this only acts to make the sense of achievement greater.

When I finished my 11-mile walk – having summited Y Garn, Pumlumon Fawr, Pumlumon Fach, Pen Pumlumon Llygad-bychan and Pen Pumlumon Arwystli as well as visited the source of the River Severn – I felt bloody fantastic.

Reaching the source of the River Severn

Reaching the source of the River Severn

Fantastic because I’d faced adversity, gone outside my comfort zone and taken on the worst Mother Nature could throw at me – and still achieved my goals.

So yes, in my opinion mountains are still fun in the rain.

Granted it’s a perverse sort of pleasure – but if that means I’m a mountain pervert, I’m happy with that.