Aug 16 - Jul 17
Sunday July 30th 2017. Cwm Pennant. Kath Spencer and Dafydd Williams led a party of 13 on a good walk of almost 9 miles in Cwm Pennant. This unspoilt and seemingly remote valley is one of the great hidden gems of Wales, penetrating deep into the mountains of Eryri and always a delight to walk in whatever the weather. On this day it was cloudy with a stiff wind at times, but the promised rain held off. The walk started from the far top of the valley at Beudyr Ddol in the basin nestling under the high peaks of the Nantlle Ridge. A circular route was followed right down the eastern side of the valley at an elevation of about 800ft following the line of the old tramway serving the Prince of Wales Quarry, a venture which proved hopeless, operating only 1873-86, but bequeathed many interesting structural relics which survive to this day. The route turned west before Craig Isallt, turning north by the chapel at Pont y Ddol to follow the scenic road on the western side of the valley, alongside the upper reaches of the Afon Dwyfor. Finally a footpath climbed past Tyddyn Mawr to regain the rail track and the descent to the start point. This made the best of the available paths in Cwm Pennant, since many were found to be overgrown with bracken, missing vital stepping stones at stream crossings or otherwise difficult to use. This was a pleasant and relaxed Sunday outing ideal for the weather conditions. Noel Davey
Thursday July 20th 2017. Llanberis. There was a good turnout of 24 members at Llanberis for a gently paced but quite strenuous 6 mile walk led by Maureen Evans. The dominant themes of the day were the fascinating remnants of the slate industry around the giant Dinorwig quarry. The walk started at the slate museum, ascending to the pioneering quarry hospital set up in 1860, and then by narrow paths and streams through the magic woodlands of Alltwen and Fachwen. There was a stop for lunch in the more open ground above Y Clegyr with fine views westwards towards Bryn Refail, Cwm y Glo and the Menai. The route skirted the old mining villages of Clwt y Bont and Deiniolen, climbing by a rough and overgrown path to a high point of 1000ft at Dinorwig and passing the monument commemorating the quarrymen set beneath the forbidding walls of slate on the slopes of Elidir Fawr. From here there was a slow and often tricky descent through a maze of old quarry buildings, steep inclines, rusting machinery and narrow slate-walled paths used by the quarrymen. The party paused at the still impressive rows of slate-built cottages at the Anglesey Barracks where workers lived on site each week. In the bright afternoon sunshine there were spectacular views of the flanks of Yr Wyddfa opposite with the green waters of Llyn Padarn and the castle of Dolbadarn nestling below. This was a most interesting and memorable walk. Noel Davey
Sunday 16th July 2017. There were two walks starting from near Bont Ddu on the northern edge of the Afon Mawddach which enticed out 15 members of the Club:-
Diffwys South. Hugh Evans led 9 on the longer walk up and around Diffwys, while Nick White escorted 6 on a shorter ramble on the lower slopes around Y Figra. The A walk started from 750ft at Banc-y-Fran at the top of a steep and narrow country road, taking an anti-clockwise route above the delightful Cwm Mynach and ascending on tracks through woodlands recently acquired by the Woodland Trust/ Coed Cadw. The route turned west and sharply upwards near Llyn Cwm Mynach, passing through an area with interesting relics of shortlived 19th century manganese mining, eventually reaching the summit of Diffwys (2450ft) in time for lunch. The going underfoot was often wet and waterlogged following recent rain, but the forecast fog had evaporated allowing superb views south across the Mawddach to the Cader Idris range and north to Ardudwy and across Bae Ceredigion to Pen Llyn. The walk then followed the wide shoulder westwards towards Llawlech, finally making a gentle descent down Braich on part of the old drovers and coach track leading from Pont Scethin and Harlech. All enjoyed this lovely day out in the hills of Meirionnydd. Noel Davey
Bontddu Circular. Nick White led six members on a 6 mile circular start from the Farchynys car park. Heading immediately up a very steep path through woods led to the disused Figra gold mine. Coffee among the spoil heaps was the closest we got to gold before heading on to a minor road , once the main route from Shrewsbury to Harlech. This led us past the cars of the A walkers, then down past deserted farms and holiday homes and another disused goldmine, with lunch on a pile of logs from the forestry harvesting. Then on through a pretty garden at Goetre and up to another forestry road leading to a delightful little lake. Finally over Bwlch-yr-ysgol, past a newly planted vineyard and down through the woods on a path turned into a stream in places by the recent rain which had thankfully held off, the weather turning beautifully sunny. At the end everyone went back to Ann and Nick for drinks and homemade scones. Nick White.
Thursday 6th July 2017. Trefor. On a beautiful sunny day Jean Norton led 22 members on a most enjoyable circuit of about 5 miles around the interesting village of Trefor. The walk started from the village car park near the harbour and pier and followed the coast path westwards onto the National Trust land of Morfa along the fine sea cliffs of Trwyn y Tai towards the picturesque West End Cottages. From here there were wonderful panoramic views across the bay from Port Dinllaen to Ynys Mon. A good spot was found for lunch at a derelict cottage above the remains of the old fishermen jetty. The route then skirted the base of the massive granite quarries of Yr Eifl , the source of the villageformer prosperity and famous as a world source of curling stones. It continued past Plas yr Eifl, the original quarry manager house now refurbished as a hotel following a devastating fire in 2005, returning to the village start point by inland field paths via Elernion . Many thanks to Gwynfor for helping out so generously with one of the walkers (now fully recovered) who fell ill during the day. Noel Davey.
Sunday July 2nd 2017. Carnedd y Filiast & Mynydd Perfedd. Dry, bright sunny weather and a moderate breeze provided good walking conditions for 17 club members who met for two walks in Nant Ffrancon. Both walks started from Tai Newyddion on the narrow country road on the western side of the valley. Noel Davey led 9 on an A walk : the route made a long but steady ascent of some 2000ft along often indistinct sheep tracks through heather and bilberries, first onto Fronllwyd overlooking the vast pits of the Penrhyn quarry, then onto a nameless peak, sometimes referred to as Cairn 721 after its height, and finally to Carnedd y Filiast (2700ft). The refuge at the summit provided a welcome lunch spot as the mists swirled in for a while, but these soon cleared to give superb views from the plateau beyond towards the Carneddau, Tryfan, Ogwen, Yr Wyddfa and Elidir. The party paused near Mynydd Perfedd to admire the impressive Atlantic Slabs before climbing steeply to the top of Foel Goch, the highest point of the day. From here the route descended along the spectacular ridge of Y Lymllwyd, past the intriguing Mushroom Garden and down Cwm Cywion to reach eventually the road back to the start point. The descent gave grand views of the sombre mass of Pen yr Ole Wen across the valley and the Rhaeadr Ogwen in full flood. This was a rewarding if strenuous walk of some 7 miles over 6 hours. Dafydd Williams led 8 on a B walk on an anticlockwise circuit, first heading up the valley, crossing the Ogwen at Maes Caradoc and ascending the other side by a well-graded track onto the moorland of Cefn yr Orsedd. Noel Davey.
Thursday June 29th 2017. Ian's 80th birthday celebratory walk. There was a disquieting sense of deja vu when 16 club members met in rain and lowering mist at the Ranger car park for a planned climb up Snowdon to commemorate Ians 80th birthday. In view of the atrocious forecast for rain and wind and the haunting experience of a similar day last August for Dafydds 80th, a wise decision was made this time to substitute a low level walk on the excellent Lon Gwyrfai path between Beddgelert and Rhyd Ddu. The walk commenced at Pont Cae Gors and descended 3 miles through the Forest to Beddgelert where the party was treated to bara brith in the shelters at the railway station. Then, on returning by the same route, there was a further treat of delicious birthday cake. While the rain continued intermittently, the cloud lifted somewhat and walking conditions on the relatively dry gravel path were quite good, providing an enjoyable outing and plenty of time to chat. To round off the day half the group trekked along the northern leg of the path past Llyn-y-Gader up to Rhyd Ddu and back, making a total distance of about 10 miles in all, somewhat further but considerably less arduous than the ascent of Snowdon which will be kept for another day when the sun is shining . Happy birthday, Ian! Noel Davey
Thursday June 22nd 2017. Moel y Ci. Pat Housecroft and Family led 17 club members on an interesting and enjoyable walk from Moel y Ci. This is a community owned sustainable farm enterprise near Tregarth which, after some troublesome early years, now supports a widening range of activities including allotments, cafe and farm shop, wood carving, cheese-making, hydro development, conferencing facilities and a local path network. The walk initially followed rural paths to the west and south, skirting the lower slopes of Mynydd Moel y Ci. Damp and misty weather conditions limited the views but were a welcome change for some from the recent days of exceptionally hot weather. Following a midge afflicted lunch stop the route continued east through pine forests passing through Sling and near Dob across Afon Ogwen to join the Lon Las Ogwen. This excellent path for walkers, cyclists and horseriders follows the route of the original horse-drawn Penrhyn slate tramway, built in 1801 to link the huge (still working) quarry to the former port; it was replaced by a steam railway in 1876. A highlight here was a walk through the impressive 200m Tregarth tunnel which has recently been reopened for public use following sympathetic restoration which shows off the fine original soot-stained stone and brickwork of the tunnel and the adjoining ravine-like cut, marred only by the utilitarian safety railings on the bridge approach which offers idyllic views of the river. The walk was pleasantly rounded off with tea at the Moel y Ci cafe in the afternoon sunshine. A spot survey of those on this walk of almost 7 miles on varying terrain revealed an average age (excluding the youthful surveyor) of 75, a remarkable tribute to the fitness of our Thursday walkers. Noel Davey
Sunday June 18th 2017. Crwydro'r Carneddau. On a beautiful warm day of wall-to-wall sunshine Roy Milnes led a band of 8 ramblers and a guest on a great outing into the Carneddau. The climb started from near Ogwen Cottage and took the steep path directly up Pen yr Ole Wen. The notoriety of this route was borne out by the vertiginous mix of steps, scree and scrambling which eventually brought the party to the summit 2000ft above the start point, some 1.8 miles and 3 hours later. The reward was a much deserved lunch. The rest of the walk was relatively easy with time to enjoy the stunning views in all directions across much of North Wales, with the unaccustomed heat tempered by a gentle breeze. The party sauntered across the barren rockfield forming the wide ridge of the Cefn Ysgolion Duon which links the peaks of Carnedd Llewelyn and Carnedd Dafydd, the third and fourth highest mountains in Wales, each just below 3,500ft. From there the route turned south-east along the heights above Cwm Eigiau, punctuated by a short but stiff climb onto to Pen yr Helgi Du and the long grassy ridge of Y Braich which led gently down via the Welsh Water service road to the A5. A couple of miles along the old Telford road and alongside Llyn Ogwen soon brought the walk back to the start point after a strenuous, but memorable day covering 11 miles in over 8 hours across some of the best landscapes in Wales. Noel Davey
Thursday June 8th 2017. Llyn Mair. Today was wet, but an improving forecast tempted out a brave group of 14 for an easy walk around Llyn Mair led by Nick White. The originally planned short D walk had to be truncated further because some paths were closed for forestry work. The walk sensibly started with lunch at the picnic site beside the lake. Fortified by Annes excellent bara brith in celebration of Jean Ns birthday, the party then strolled around the western half of Llyn Mair, climbing into the Coed Cadw woodland of Hafod y Llyn and the nearby smaller lake of the same name. This superb area of parkland was originally developed in the 19thC as part of the Plas Tan y Bwlch Estate for the Oakley slate family. In spite of continuing showers and wet conditions underfoot, the deep greens, mysterious lakes and rushing streams were a delight. After 2 miles and a welcome breath of fresh air, the party climbed or drove up to the Tan y Bwlch station cafe for a final panad. Noel Davey
Sunday June 4th 2017. Nant Gwynant. Dafydd Williams guided a dozen ramblers on a favourite walk in the heart of Snowdonia, starting from Pont Bethania. The day started a bit damp and brisk, but turned increasingly bright and warm in the June sunshine. The route first led westwards, passing Llyndy Isaf, the 600 acre farm recently purchased by the National Trust, now choosing its fifth young farmer scholar to manage the farm for a year. A much improved gravel path then skirted the southern shore of Llyn Dinas, avoiding the previous mud, continuing via the tourist attraction of Sygun Copper Mine to Beddgelert. Here the route turned south, passing St Marys Church, dating back at least to a 12thC Augustinian priory, and the stone monument marking the legendary resting place of Llewelyns faithful hound which named the village. The rough Fishermans Path (no fishermen sighted today) then led through the majestic Pass of Aberglaslyn, looking its best in the bright dappled green light close above the swirling waters of the river. The picnic tables in the glade near Pont Aberglaslyn provided an ideal sheltered lunch spot in preparation for the steady hike up Cwm Bychan, notable for the interesting remnants of 19thC copper mining, to the highest point of the day at 950ft on Grib Ddu. From here there were superb views of the nearest peaks of Snowdonia and the wooded valley and lake below . The way back led steeply down a stepped (and again improved) path to rejoin the earlier lake shore route. Tea at the Bethania cafe was most welcome after an excellent walk of some 9 miles over 6 hours. Noel Davey
Thursday May 25th 2017. Porth Ysgo to Aberdaron. Lis Williams led a party of 22 members on a gorgeous coastal walk from Porth Ysgo to Aberdaron on the warmest day of the year so far with full sunshine and afternoon temperatures reaching 27C. The route followed the superb newly opened 3 mile section of the Wales Coastal Path, a high-level grassy path which offers magnificent views of the wild rocky shore from Gallt y Mor past Porth Cadlan and Maen Gwenonwy, both linked to Arthurian legend, to Trwyn y Penrhyn which marks the eastern end of Aberdaron Bay. Here the path turned inland to follow the pleasant valley of the Afon Daron a mile down to its mouth. Aberdaron village provided an ideal spot for a leisurely lunch and ice creams on the beach before the 3 mile return leg back up the valley and via the road and the former Llyn Coastal Path through the fields of Cadlan Uchaf and Isaf where a series of traditional stiles, not yet replaced by modern kissing gates, slowed the pace. A few opted to return by the convenient Llyn Coastal Bus, finding the unaccustomed heat more than they bargained for. Some of the party were then treated to tea and delicious cake at the Old Rectory, rounding off an excellent day. Noel Davey
Sunday May 21st 2017. Cwm Hesgyn. 16 club members met at Canolfan Tryweryn, the National Whitewater Centre near Bala, for an excellent day out walking in dry and mostly sunny weather in the remote and rarely visited Cwm Hesgyn. Half the party took the longer walk of 11.7 miles led by Hugh Evans; the other half followed a shorter route of some 6 miles led by Dafydd Williams. The two groups started together, heading north past a house named Efrog Newydd 1933, supposedly commemorating a ladys fond recollections of a transatlantic tryst with a rich American. The groups parted at the isolated farmstead of Cwm Hesgyn, the B walk turning east across the Fridd Bwlch-graianog. The A group continued north across the Fridd Cwmhesgyn, safely crossing Nant y Coed, which can be a major obstacle when in flood, and climbing up on tracks through the heather and peat, eventually reaching the peak of Carnedd y Filiast (meaning for some reason the cairn of the greyhound) at about 2100ft. From a sheltered lunch spot nearby there were far reaching views over the tranquil empty moorland, extending north to the main peaks of Snowdonia, south to the Arans and Arenigs and east to the Berwyns and Clwydian Hills. The way ahead continued along an arcing ridge, past Llyn Hesgyn, rejoining the B route at Bwlch Graianog and descending into the green fields of the Afon Mynach valley. The A group maintained a good pace, eager to catch up the Bs and enjoy a cup of tea and carrot cake before closing time at Manons cafe beside the white waters and kayakers rushing down from Llyn Celyn, a great way to round off a most enjoyable day. Noel Davey
Thursday May 11th 2017. Cwm Pennant. It is always a pleasure to visit Cwm Pennant, one of the loveliest valleys of Wales, penetrating deep into the mountains of western Snowdonia. Ian and Kath Spencer led 32 members on a well-attended and leisurely paced walk in the southern end of valley. The route of about 6 miles stayed mainly on the lanes, starting from the tiny church of St Marys in the old settlement of Dolbenmaen, thought to have been the maerdref or administrative centre of Eifionydd in the time of the Princes. After passing Llanfihangel-y-Pennant and Pont y Ddol, the walkers took the more challenging footpath south, struggling to cross a particularly problematic stile before lunch on the slope of Craig Isallt. The route back joined the straight lanes through the remnants of the Brynkir estate , now the site of an Outdoor Pursuits Centre and the curious 19th century folly of Twr Bryncir, recently refurbished for upmarket holiday use. There was a final stop for tea on the scenic Lodge Bridge, rounding off a very pleasant outing on a mainly bright and sunny day. Noel Davey
Sunday May 7th 2017. Nefyn to Llanbedrog. Enjoying the recent spell of spring sunshine and blue skies, 19 members of the Club walked 9 miles right across the Llyn Peninsula, from Nefyn to Llanbedrog, guided by Miriam Heald and Jean Norton. The walk started at the Stryd y Plas car park, skirting south around Garn Boduan past the site of the infamous jousting tournament held here in 1284 by Edward I to celebrate his conquest. The middle section kept clear of the waterlogged Cors Geirch, mostly following delightful lanes where the spring hedgerows looked their best. After lunch in a convenient clearing provided by an old gravel pit, the route continued south along some poorly marked footpaths into Rhyd y Clafdy where there was a welcome stop for beers and cold drinks at the Tafarn Tu Hwnt ir Afon. The last leg used recently upgraded paths past Wern Fawr, turning SE to follow the lovely old tree-lined drovers track to Crugan. From here it was a short step down to the coastal path and along the beach back to cars waiting at the National Trust car park in Llanbedrog. This was a most enjoyable hike through the peninsulas beautiful and little known rural interior, offering many fine views of the Llyn hills and glimpses of the sea. Noel Davey
Saturday April 29th-Saturday May 6th Annual Club Holiday. 35 members and friends of the Club enjoyed a wonderful week at the HF Hotel at Freshwater Bay in the Isle of Wight. On each of five days there was a choice of three walks of varying difficulty, led by members of the party, covering an excellent cross-section of the islands delightful countryside, combining magnificent stretches of open downs, spring woodlands and coastal scenery, including the iconic white cliffs and The Needles on the western tip. Most walked a total distance of between 35 and 65 miles over the week. Apart from rain on the first two days, the weather was good for walking, dry with occasional sunshine. Some hardy souls braved the brisk easterlies to make regular use of the heated pool at the hotel. On the day off half the party visited Osborne House, while others relaxed or looked round other local attractions such as gardens and Carisbrooke Castle. The accommodation and service met their usual high standard. The plentiful meals were superb, offering plenty of opportunities to indulge in conversation and overeating in equal measure. The evenings were enlivened by a full programme of diverse and convivial entertainments devised by members. Many thanks to Hugh for organising this memorable holiday so impeccably. Noel Davey
Thursday April 27th 2017. Chwilog. Kath Spencer led 24 walkers on a very pleasant rural ramble from Chwilog, covering some 5.5 miles over 3 hours. It was a day of sunny periods and occasional light showers which did little to dampen the walkers good spirits or the flow of conversation. The route first headed east along the main road, turning north-east after half a mile onto the Lon Goed with good views down to the sea. This historic tree-lined track, built two centuries ago by the Mostyn Estate to service local farms, is always a delightful place to walk, especially in spring as the beech leaves unfurl. After another half-mile, the route turned off through Chwilog Fawr, with a break for morning coffee beside a new fishing lake, passing a caravan park at Llety Wennol. There was then a stroll along one of Eifionydds classic wooded lanes to rejoin the Lon Goed after about a mile and follow it back to near its start point at Afon Wen, pausing for lunch in a favourite spot near one of the fine carved benches. Noel Davey
Sunday April 23rd 2017. Carnedd y Cribau. This was a glorious spring day for a walk in the heart of Snowdonia. Dafydd Williams led a group of 16 ramblers starting near the Roman Camp at Pen y Gwryd and crossing southwards over the notorious moorland expanse of the Land of the 1000 Bogs where the perils were thankfully muted by the recent spell of dry weather. A brief detour was made to the vantage point of Cefn y Cerrig before the ascent to Carnedd y Cribau, at about 2000ft the highest point of the day. From here there were magnificent panoramic views of the peaks all around, dominated by the massif of Yr Wyddfa itself, unusually clear and sharp in the bright sunshine. The route continued along the broken ridge of Y Cribau, with a lunch stop in a sheltered craggy spot. At Bwlch y Rhediad a second detour was made to the site of an air crash where on the night of January 10th 1952 an Aer Lingus flight from London to Dublin came down with the loss of all 23 on board. A few still lie there together with the wreckage deep beneath the marsh in this desolate moorland spot, now marked by a plaque and a solitary tree. The walk then descended by a steep but delightful wooded path to the upper Glaslyn valley, heading back up to Pen y Gwryd, the proverbial sting in the tail, by the old road past the Cwm Dyli hydro station with dramatic views looking back to Llyn Gwynant. This was a deceptively strenuous, but most enjoyable 6 hour walk of some 7.2 miles and almost 2500ft of ascent. Noel Davey
Thursday April 13th 2017. Mynydd Rhiw Circular. A group of 25 ramblers enjoyed a lovely walk on Mynydd Rhiw led by Marian Hopkins, starting from the small National Trust car park high on the north-east flank of the mountain. A further 4 members opted for an alternative car park and took a different route. The main walk headed first up a broad grassy track to the summit at about 1000ft, passing the unobtrusive hollows marking the site of a neolithic axe factory and stopping in the shelter of the bronze age cairn for a panad. In spite of a chilly breeze, the day was bright with sunny periods and good visibility, providing spectacular views across Llyn to Ynys Enlli, the peaks of Snowdonia and right down the Welsh coast. The walkers then tracked south and east down the side of the mountain , stopping to admire the beautifully restored smallholder cottages (most likely tai unnos) and gardens at Fron Deg now tended by Emyr for the National Trust, a good spot for lunch. The walk detoured to see a rare medieval pigsty and later the remains of Capel Galltraeth which closed in 1942 when the congregation had dwindled to just two brothers who famously refused to talk to each other for years. The return was through the remnants of pine forest, now being replanted with deciduous trees, ending with a steep ascent back to the start point. An interesting walk of about 4 miles was rounded off perfectly by tea kindly provided by Lis Williams at the Old Rectory. Noel Davey
Sunday April 9th 2017. Rhobell Fawr. Judith Thomas led 11 members on a first class walk up Rhobell Fawr, a mountain that had gained a notorious reputation in the Club and was avoided for some years. The drive up to the remote start point of the walk at about 950 ft was itself quite an adventure, taking a narrow 5 mile road winding through sparsely populated and rolling moorland landscapes past the hamlet of Abergeirw. The route of the walk first followed a good track along Cwm yr Allt-lwyd and the upper reaches of the Afon Mawddach, turning due south at its confluence with the picturesque Nant yr Helyg and then striking directly up grassy slopes to the main peak of Rhobell Fawr at about 2400ft which was reached after about 3 hours. Pleasant hazy sunshine throughout the ascent allowed fine views across to the neighbouring peaks of Dduallt and Rhobell y Big and the wider landscape. The forecast mists then rolled in on brisk westerlies , but a sheltered spot for lunch was found just below the summit . A steep descent was made due east into the coniferous forest around Cefn yr Eryr, now under active cutting, and then a wooded bridleway was followed back to join the outward track. This was an excellent five hours in the hills, involving some 7.2 miles, successfully breaking the Rhobell Fawr jinx. Noel Davey
Thursday March 30th 2017. Nant Gwrtheyrn. Ian Spencer led 15 surprisingly determined walkers from Mount Pleasant on this rather wet and misty day, revisiting part of the route of last month’s Sunday walk when the weather was even worse with much stronger winds. The party descended by the steep and twisting, albeit recently improved road to the increasingly impressive Welsh Language Centre at Nant Gwrtheyrn, where there was a welcome chance to have a morning coffee and chat in the comfort of the cafe. The route continued above the beach, past the ruins of granite quarries, and up the hillside via Gallt y Bwlch. There was a stop for lunch at the top in the shelter of the same still deserted second home which had accommodated the previous walk. The ramblers then returned across the exposed and elevated plateau in increasingly wet conditions, taking the route recently improved as part of one of the excellent circular walks off the Coastal Path funded by the Coastal Communities Fund. Despite the poor weather and restricted views, this 3.5 mile walk provided a worthwhile breath of fresh air and exercise on this dramatic section of the Llyn coast. Noel Davey
Sunday March 26th 2017. Mynydd Mawr. On this beautiful spring day there were two walks, both starting from Talysarn, an A walk of 10.5 miles led by Noel Davey and a B walk of about 7.5 miles led by Dafydd Williams. The party of 18 started off together, climbing about 700ft up to Cilgwyn by steep narrow paths (some recently improved by ramblers volunteers), so typical of this former quarrying area. The route then levelled off on tracks at around 1000ft, passing the reclaimed landfill site and the village of Y Fron , soon entering the open moorland of Uwchgwyrfai. Near Llyn Fynnonau the walks diverged, 11 making a steady ascent of Mynydd Mawr (2300ft) by the grassy path on the north west side. The summit afforded spectacular views towards Snowdon, the Nantlle Ridge, Llyn, Ynys Mon and the Irish coast. Lunch was taken in two low -walled refuges which gave some protection from the chilly easterly gusts at this altitude. The descent was made on the south-west side, past the precipitous Craig y Bera crags and down a long walled gully onto Rhos Pawl and the area of Caeronwy, notable for remnants of ancient homesteads and field systems. Here the route rejoined the path taken earlier by the 7 on the shorter walk. This led down to Nantlle via pleasant field paths and tracks, eventually heading back to Talysarn through the impressive remains of the many quarries, including the intriguing lakes formed by the deep pits of the Twll Mawr and the Dorothea, the latter making a good a tea spot. The sunny weather, fine views and interesting environment all made for a good, if strenuous, day out . Noel Davey
Thursday 16 March 2017. Dolwyddelan. Dafydd Williams led a short walk of four and a half miles in Dolwyddelan when 24 members, including two further new members, congregated at Dolwyddelan railway station. When the Llyn Ramblers were in Dolwyddelan a month previously the weather was abysmal and the forecast was again unfavourable and, whilst it was moderate in Pwllheli, when we were approaching Blaenau Ffestiniog we were greeted by mist and drizzle and so it was in Dolwyddelan. We started the walk by heading south on a narrow uphill tarmacked road to Cwm Penamnen with the River Maesgwm flowing strongly towards us on our left. To the right was an eye catching waterfall cascading almost horizontally some 400 feet down the steep valley side! Having reached the ruins of some 15th century cottages, Tai Penamnen, and having a break for tea/coffee, we passed two recently renovated properties, Gwyndy and Tyn y Cwm before turning left and up hill through the trees. This was the highest point on the walk and we then turned northwards on a level forestry track with the river still on our left but now flowing in the same direction that we were walking! We lunched half way down this beautiful valley, the rain ceased and the mist relented enabling us to see the foothills of Moel Siabod, its summit in cloud, in the distance. Back to the car park after which we adjourned to a nearby cafe for a welcome cup of tea and cake. This was the last Thursday walk before the clocks go forward and whilst it was short it was an enjoyable and pleasant ramble. Dafydd Williams.
Sunday March 12th 2017. Moel Ddu. On a damp and misty day Dafydd and Tecwyn Williams took turns it was not always clear whose to lead a band of 14, including two newcomers, up Moel Ddu. The walk started at 650 ft from the dam at Llyn Cwmystradllyn, the main source of the Llyns drinking water. The route followed an anticlockwise direction, eventually reaching the twin peaks of Moel Ddu at just over 1800 ft in time for an early lunch. From here there were 360 degree views - of mist, but on the way down it lifted to give murky glimpses of the impressive landscape below. The walk passed through the workings of the Gorseddau Quarry, part of a massive but commercially disastrous mid-19th century investment in the local slate industry. The walkers marvelled at the remarkable piece of arching stonework here which is now thought to have prevented slate waste swamping the tramway below by effectively shooting it over the wagons. The way then led down a flooded track to the north of the lake, past the ruins of quarry housing, regaining the dam just as the sun came out. In spite of a steady drizzle in the first couple of hours and wet and slippery conditions throughout, the weather was relatively mild and winds moderate, and this proved an enjoyable and quite strenuous outing, which belied its relatively short length of 5.5 miles. Noel Davey.
Thursday March 2nd 2017. AGM & Snowdrop Walk. The Club held its 38th AGM at Capel y Traeth in Criccieth. The meeting was remarkable for its brevity and an impressive attendance of 46. Dafydd Williams then led a contingent of 30 on a leisurely and convivial 3.3 mile ramble along the Afon Dwyfor. The walk started from Llanystumdwy, making use of the long straight drive serving Trefan Hall and stopping for lunch at the fine late 18C bridge of Pont Rhyd-y-Benllyg, before returning along the Dwyfor proper. The river was in full spate after the recent rain and the riverside path slippery and wet, but the array of snowdrops, supplemented by emerging daffodils, provided their usual spectacular show, which always makes this woodland walk a highlight of the late winter programme. Back at the village there was a pause for a group photo at the evocative riverside setting of the grave of David Lloyd George. Noel Davey
Sunday February 26th 2017. Trer Ceiri and Yr Eifl. The programmed walk was to climb Trer Ceiri and Yr Eifl, but with lowering mist and a forecast of heavy rain and 60mph wind gusts, the peaks were given a miss on this occasion, by common consent. Instead, Judith Thomas led the 8 walkers on a 5 mile route, starting at 900ft from Mount Pleasant, ascending towards Bwlch yr Eifl and then steeply down the hillside to Nant Gwrtheyrn, home of the Welsh Language Centre, where the party enjoyed a welcome panad at the excellent cafe. The walk then continued above the Porth y Nant beach, past the old quarries and climbed back up through the ancient woodland at Gallt y Bwlch , stopping for lunch in the shelter of the wall of a deserted holiday home. The walkers then staggered back across the plateau, buffeted by strong winds. While this was a shorter walk than usual for a Sunday, it proved an enjoyable lung-bursting outing and a wise decision as rain set in for the rest of the day. Noel Davey
Thursday 16 February 2017. Dolwyddelan valley walk. Despite a reassuring weather forecast that the rain would not arrive until 3.00 p.m. the metrological office were once again incorrect. The rain had started on the journey to Dolwyddelan where 33 hardy souls gathered at the car park adjoining the railway station and were led on a five mile walk by Judith Thomas. From the car park we exited by the arrival route and turned immediately left over the railway bridge and soon joined the uphill track leading to Ty Mawr, Gwybrnant, a historically important place as it was the birthplace of William Morgan (1545 1604) who in the 16th century translated the Bible from Greek & Hebrew into Welsh. By so doing it is accepted that it has resulted in the Welsh Language surviving to this day. After some 2 miles we went left downhill to the valley bottom emerging near to the railway halt Pont y Pant. At this stage 2 walkers left, one had a medical appointment whilst the other said she had had enough of the persistent rain! Our considerate leader Judith had arranged for the party to visit the nearby Plas Hall Hotel cafe where we were made welcome despite being bedraggled and dripping wet. It was a welcome break from the elements and we fortified ourselves with hot tea/coffee and cake and when we emerged the rain was not as intense. We trudged the last 2 miles back to Dolwyddelan parallel with the river and the rain again became persistent and despite the conditions everybody apart from one thoroughly enjoyed themselves. Dafydd Williams.
Sunday February 12th 2017. Moel Eilio. In the first real taste of winter conditions this year, Heather Stanton led an intrepid band of 8 up Moel Eilio. Bitter easterly winds gusting to over 60mph made the freezing temperatures feel even chillier and at times bowled over even the sturdiest walkers, while a thin snow covering from 1200ft upwards often made conditions slippery. However, visibility was good and shafts of sunlight lit up the landscape, enhancing the spectacular views of white mountain peaks and the green, brown and silver hues of the valleys and lakes below. The route started near Bwlch y Groes, high above Waunfawr, heading up straight up due south to Eilio itself at 2400ft; the party continued over Foel Goch, pausing for a brief lunch in the shelter of a wall at Bwlch Maesgwm. The descent was via the much easier and snow-free Maesgwm path, skirting the uplands above Llanberis at about 800ft and eventually climbing back up to the cars, just before a snowstorm swept in. Given the weather conditions, this was a challenging but most exhilarating walk, covering in all 8 miles and almost 4000ft of cumulative ascent in 4 hours. Noel Davey.
Thursday February 2nd 2017. Beaumaris. 20 members met in the colourful town of Beaumaris for a most agreeable day out in Anglesey. The relaxed walk of about 6 miles, led by John Enser, coincided with a lucky window of a few hours of dry sunny weather with warm blustery winds. The route headed north out of the town up through the manicured grounds of the Henlllys Golf Course and past the imposing Henllys Hotel and apartments, built a century ago as a monastery, reaching Llanfaes, a small village with an illustrious medieval history as a major port, briefly the capital of the kingdom of Gwynedd and the last resting place of Joan, wife of Llywelyn Fawr and daughter of King John. The way then turned west and then south through elevated countryside with grand views towards the Carneddau and the Great Orme, pausing for lunch near the Bulkeley Memorial, a 19th century obelisk commemorating the influential local family and estate. After passing some 17th century almshouses, the walk continued along the The Mile Road, eventually descending the Allt Goch Bach past the Baron Hill Golf Course from where there were spectacular views of a very choppy Menai Strait, forcing the party to dodge the deluges of spray from the waves pounding the front in Beaumaris. The walk was rounded off by a welcome stop at one the High Street cafes. Noel Davey
Sunday January 29th 2017. Foel Fawr, Craig Wen and gold mine. Roy Milnes led 8 members of the club on an interesting 7 mile walk on the Mynydd Maentwrog moors east of Trawsfynydd. The route started at Tomen y Mur, well known for the prominent mound of an 11th century castle and the much older remains of the major Roman military complex which once commanded a strategic cross-roads in this now remote area. The walk first passed a small slate cutting enterprise, ascending Foel Fawr and then following a winding ridge to Graig Wen; at 1750ft, this offered a good vantage point for lunch with fine views towards the Moelwyns, Manod Mawr, the Arenigs and Rhinogydd, all lightly dusted with snow . The best part of the walk was an intriguing visit to the underground workings of one of the old gold mines alongside the headwaters of the Afon Llafar. The party was able to penetrate several hundred yards by torchlight along the surprisingly well constructed rocky tunnel into the mine, but carefully avoided some of the many smaller and more precarious-looking branch tunnels and, sadly, no gold was found. The route back led through the remnants of the Roman Practice Camps at Dolddinas, used for military manoeuvres and training exercises. This was another enjoyable walk, all the better for escaping with only light drizzle for the last mile or so, in spite of a forecast for heavy rain for much of the day. Noel Davey
Thursday January 19th 2017. Tudweiliog. On an overcast day, in dry, still and mild conditions, Miriam Heald led 18 ramblers on a varied and interesting walk of just under 5 miles around Tudweiliog. The party first headed inland down the impressive mile long, tree-lined drive leading to Cefnamwlch, the historic seat of the Griffith family, one of the most prominent in Llyn in the 15th-18th C. By kind permission of the owner, the party entered the grounds via the imposing 1607 gatehouse and toured the fine walled garden, admiring the 200 year old brick summer house and the surprising array of plants in flower in January, a memorable spot for a coffee break . A network of damp leafy paths was then followed back through the surrounding woodland. After an alfresco lunch at the Lion Inn, a second circuit was made along muddy paths to the coast at Porth Towyn, providing a good chance to enjoy the splendid scenery of the sea and cliffs, including a glimpse of seals. Noel Davey.
Sunday January 15th 2017. Bryncir. Kath Spencer led 9 members on a good long circuit of almost 9 miles on a rarely visited network of lanes and paths to the west of Bryncir. The route started at the old railway station car park and followed the excellent Lon Eifion cycle track northwards for about a mile, then turning west towards Bwlch Derwyn, past rather forbidding pylons and wind turbines via some muddy farm sections and the small hill of Y Foel. There was then a loop through a forest area and after a welcome stop for lunch, the walk continued southwards around the open access area of Mynydd Cenin. At Hendre Cenin an exceptionally muddy track led onto the northernmost section of the famous Lon Goed, a tree-line cart track built early in the 19th century from the coast at Afon Wen to bring lime to the inland farms of the Mostyn Estate. From there metalled lanes were followed back to Bryncir through Llecheiddior, an area where open strip gravel quarrying is to be revived. This proved an enjoyably social outing well suited to a mid-January day which, though rather dank, misty and sunless, remained calm, mild and remarkably dry, contrary to earlier forecasts. Noel Davey.
Thursday January 5th 2017. Chwilog. There was a good turnout of 24 for the first Thursday walk of the New Year led by Kath Mair. A cold and frosty day of bright sunshine was ideal for this pleasant and varied rural ramble from Chwilog. The route led towards the coast through charming lanes and fields, enlivened by some tricky stiles, past the remarkable 15th Century medieval hall of Penarth Fawr and down via Penychain to the long sandy expanse of Abererch Beach. A sheltered lunch spot was found in the sand dunes. The way then turned back north around the walls of the once powerful and still intriguing Broom Hall Estate. A most agreeable walk of over 8 miles was rounded off by a generous invitation to tea and Christmas cake at Ian and Kaths home in nearby Llanarmon. Noel Davey.
Sunday January 1st 2017. Moel y Gest. On a fine day Tecwyn Williams and Ian Spencer led 13 walkers from the car park at Borth y Gest up Moel y Gest, an innocuous mountain (hill) of just under 1000 feet but as you start at sea level there is 1000 feet to climb to the summit! Tecwyn is familiar with the area as it is his home stamping ground and he led initially along an extremely muddy path, past Tyddyn Llwyn and then steeply, and on the day, a very slippery and greasy path towards the first of the saddle peaks which was reached by all with some difficulty. A tea/coffee break was taken on the saddle when the joint leaders decided that the second summit would be attacked from the west side as opposed to the east side as they considered that route would be difficult due to the conditions underfoot. The northern summit was reached after another steep climb, by 10 members of the group with three having to return home early because of family commitments. The descent initially took the ascent route and it was at this point that the last two walkers, Hugh and Gwynfor thought that they had stumbled upon a silver mine on Moel y Gest but this turned out to be Gwynfors small change tumbling out of his pocket! Soon the party headed in the direction of Morfa Bychan passing the farm with horses, pigs and llamas, crossing the Porthmadog/Morfa Bychan road, through the woods, over the Dafydd y Garreg Wen hillock and back to Borth y Gest. Inevitably the parti visited the local cafe for a welcome cup of tea or coffee before dispersing after a successful walking start to the New Year. Dafydd Williams.
Thursday December 22nd 2016. Coed y Brenin/Ganllwyd. Giving the Christmas rush a rest, 19 club members met at Coed y Brenin for two pleasant walks on one of the excellent forest trails now available. Once again it was a mild, bright and rainless day, though there was a nippy wind. The party started together climbing gently north from the Visitor Centre to the Cefndeuddwr ridge and then down to the Afon Gain. Dafydd Williams then led 11 walkers on a longer loop of some 5 miles past the ruins of Penmaen farm and the medieval bloomeries, relics of 14th century iron ore smelting using local charcoal. Nick White, almost fully recovered from his recent operation, led 8 walkers on a shorter 3 mile route. Both groups returned down parts of Sarn Helen, a major Roman road linking North and South Wales, supposedly named after a Mabinogion heroine and marked by a surviving milestone. The going was easy, mainly on forest tracks with glimpses towards the Rhinogydd and Rhobell Fawr, an ideal walk for the short days around the winter solstice. The party finally reconvened for tea at the well-appointed cafe. Noel Davey
Sunday December 18th 2016. Criccieth. Dafydd Williams led 10 club members on a lovely walk in the hinterland of Criccieth on an overcast, but dry, mild and calm day good walking weather. It was an interesting and varied walk of almost 9.5 miles on field and woodland paths and lanes. Starting from the West End shore car park, the party walked north up the narrow Lon Fel, over Moel Ednyfed, at about 450ft the highest point of the day, and onto the golf course, opening up fine views of the town and castle. The route led on to Ystumcegid, pausing for a morning panad at the Neolithic burial chamber, then turning south down the Afon Dwyfor along the magical woodland path beside the river, which is a delight in every season. There was a stop for lunch at Pont Rhyd-y-Benllyg and a photocall at David Lloyd Georges tranquil riverside grave. The walk continued past Aberkin to the coast, following the coastal path back to Criccieth past the controversially contemporary house of Cefn Castell. Rounding off a most enjoyable day, Catherine and Dafydd entertained the party to a very special tea of delicious cake, mince pies and prosecco. Noel Davey
Thursday December 8th 2016 Uwchmynydd / Porth Meudwy. Marian Hopkins led nine ramblers on a superb coastal walk from Aberdaron to Uwchmynydd and back. After early morning rain and mist it turned into a delightful sunny day with light winds and mild spring-like conditions . The initial section following the coast path south included some strenuous climbs up and down slippery steps at the rocky coves at Porth Simmde, Porth Meudwy and Porth Cloch, eventually reaching the headland Pen y Cil, a great spot for lunch with fine views across the choppy sound to Ynys Enlli. The route then turned north-west over Mynydd Bychestyn where the National Trust is trying to reduce the gorse and encourage the heather in a scheme to restore traditional cattle grazing practices. Turning inland, the party enjoyed a panad at the Ty Newydd cafe which kindly opened its doors for us, then returning to the coast near Cwrt for the path back to Aberdaron. This was a gently paced walk of 7 miles over 51/2 hours, but by no means an easy one as cumulative ascent of 1200ft attested. The unseasonally good weather was a bonus which enhanced the magnificent coastal views throughout the day. Noel Davey
Sunday December 4th 2016. Maentwrog to Llyn Trawsfynydd. The Clubs remarkable run of good walking weather continued with another bright sunny day, sharpened by a bracing easterly. There were two walks from Maentwrog to Llyn Trawsfynydd. Hugh Evans led 4 members on an A walk of 10 miles, while Dafydd Williams, monopolising the ladies, led 11 on an easier B walk of some 7 miles. Both groups climbed steeply from the early 20th century hydroelectric station through the mixed pine forest of Coed Felinrhyd, reaching at about 700 ft open moorland dotted with the ruins of sheepfolds and farmhouses. The B group then contoured eastwards along a leete, while the A group continued southwards at a brisk pace on a longer loop, reaching 1300 ft along Cwm Moch and then descending to the newly created cycle path along the shores of Llyn Trawsfynydd. A perfect spot was found for lunch, complete with stone seats and table and a breathtaking backdrop of the lake and snow-flecked peaks beyond. The two groups reunited on the hydro dam, crossing the huge pipeline and following the right bank of the Afon Prysor through the delightful wooded ravine and national nature reserve of Ceunant Llenyrch . This path gave the party a good view of the spectacular Rhaeadr Du, passing through an eerie landscape of whitish skeletal trees. These are part of an important area of ancient Atlantic oak woodland recently acquired for protection by Coed Cadw. The route soon joined a narrow metalled road which led back down to the power station to complete a most enjoyable 5 hour walk with mince pies kindly supplied by Roy Milnes. Noel Davey
Thursday November 24th 2016. Porth Oer / Whistling Sands. On a spectacularly bright and cloudless sunny day Ian Spencer led 21 members on a very pleasant walk from Porth Oer to Aberdaron and back. The route of some 6.4 miles followed an easy mix of inland field paths, track and lanes, including a section of the Coastal Path route down the Afon Daron, reaching Aberdaron in time for lunch. This was taken on benches and picnic tables overlooking the beach against the beautiful backdrop of the choppy blue waters of the bay, eroding cliffs and the twin islands of Ynysoedd Gwylanod. After a saunter through the village, allowing time for the ladies to browse the National Trust shop at Porth y Swnt, the route climbed steeply up the Uwchmynydd road and then headed north back past Mynydd Carreg to the start point. A most enjoyable outing. Noel Davey
Sunday November 13th 2016. Mynydd Gorllwyn. Tecwyn Williams made a welcome return to the helm to lead 12 members on a great walk around the plateau above Tremadog, a remarkable area of distinctive crags and rocks with a long history of settlement evident from the many ancient hut circles, house platforms, standing stones and ruined homesteads. The route led from the Maes in Tremadog steeply up through woodland past Tan yr Allt, the Roman steps and the popular climbing rock, soon providing the first of the days many lovely views, down to Porthmadog and across the Glaslyn estuary 600ft below. We then continued north across more open land, ascending by a moderately steep track to the highest point of the walk on Mynydd Gorllwyn at just under 1300ft: from there a spectacular panorama of the surrounding countryside opened up with glimpses of the highest snow-capped peaks of Snowdonia. A sheltered lunch spot was found at the foot of the Bwlch y Rhiwiau, before circling the open plateau west , in view of the grand 19th relic of the Slate Mill, and then south , skirting Craig y Gesail, pausing to examine an unusual group of cairns, and finally descending, at times steeply, down Cwm Mawr. This was a memorable 7.5 mile walk enhanced by a crisp day of glorious autumn sunshine and light winds. Noel Davey
Thursday November 10th 2016. Garnfadryn. On a sunny day with a cold wind 22 members met in Llaniestyn for an excellent 5 mile hike up and down Garn Fadryn led by Miriam Heald. The path climbed steeply up about 500 ft by a recently cleared bridleway to the road at Garn Fadryn village. From there the familiar route skirted NE around the mountain, then zigzagged up by a rough path though heather to a stony plateau and finally past cairns to the 1200ft high summit. Here the climbers were rewarded by splendid views across the Llyn in every direction. Lunch was taken sheltering from the wind, beside the citadel of one of the earliest Welsh castles and overlooking remnants of the iron age hill fort just below. Following a descent via more easterly field paths, the party was treated to a most welcome panad and cakes at Miriam and Tonys house near Llaniestyn. Noel Davey.
Sunday November 6th 2016. Cregennen Lakes from Arthog. This pleasant 9 mile walk from Arthog to the Llynau Cregennan was led by Dafydd and Noel, taking over from Chairman Nick who is, thankfully, recovering well from an operation and was even able to get to the start point at the old Arthog station to set the party off (eventually) on their way. The route led up steeply through magnificent beech and oak woods past a series of torrents and waterfalls, crossing a stone clapper bridge and the site of Llys Bradwen, the reputed court of a legendary medieval chieftain. Here, as throughout the day, the autumn colours were remarkable. From the open plateau around the lakes at about 800ft there were fine views down and across the Mawddach Estuary, as well up to the mist-shrouded ridge of Cadair Idris and Tyrrau Mawr. The main party continued north-west, but 3 walkers took the opportunity to make a short detour up to the iron age fort and Pared y Cefn Hir, some 500 feet higher. The walkers re-united for lunch in the enchanting cemetery of a ruined Methodist chapel which is now notable for its memorial to Gwynfor Evans, the Welsh Nationalist and campaigner, who had a special link with this area. A wooded descent followed to Abergwynant through the narrow Gwynant valley. From here it was a smart 3 mile walk back along part of the excellent Mawddach trail following the former Dolgellau to Barmouth railway track alongside the estuary shore. Whereas the morning had featured intermittent light drizzle, though light winds, full sun now made a lovely end to the day. Noel Davey
Thursday October 27th. 2016. Afon Ysgethin/Burial Chamber. Always a highlight of the Thursday programme, some 20 club members took the morning train from Pwllheli and points north down the Cambrian Coast Railway, alighting at Tal-y-Bont, where they were met by the walk leader, Fred Foskett, ably assisted by Kathleen Marsden. The day was cloudy, but warm and dry with occasional hints of brightness. The walk of around 6 miles led up through delightful autumn beech woods alongside the the Afon Ysgethin, pausing at the beauty spot of the 18th century Pont Fadog. From there the route headed north-west past Llety Loegr, once a way-station on the drovers road, and the 5000 year old megalithic burial chamber with a tilted capstone known as Arthurs Quoit. Here misty views opened up over Bae Ceredigion down the length of the Llyn as far as Ynys Enlli. With permission of the present owner lunch was taken in the gardens of the imposing Cors-y-Gedol Hall, dating from the 16th century and the historic seat of the Vaughan family. The walk then took a circuit of pleasant pastoral and woodland paths, crossing the mile long drive to the Hall, soon regaining Tal-y-Bont. While waiting for the 4pm train back, the walk leader treated the party to a panad at the Nineteen-57 establishment near the station. This was a leisurely and convivial day out in an area of great scenic and historical interest. Noel Davey
Sunday October 23rd 2016. Ro Wen. The Club made its second Sunday outing this autumn to the lovely, but little known Penamnen horseshoe, again starting from Dolwyddelan station. This time Judith Thomas led 14 walkers up Cwm Penamnen by a track forming a stretch of the Roman Road of Sarn Helen, passing the lonely ruins of Tai Penamnen, dating from the late 15th cent and home to Maredudd ab Ieuan, the founder of the powerful Wynn dynasty of Gwydir. The party then climbed by a steep forest path, this time turning east on gaining the ridge which led up to the peak of Ro-Wen at just over 2000ft, where we lunched. The weather was cloudy and often cold in the wind, but it remained dry and the views were good. The descent was by a relatively easy track, save for a short detour past a woodland stream. All enjoyed this fine walk of some 7.5 miles over 4 hours. Noel Davey
Thursday October 13th 2016. Llanberis. Tecwyn Williams led 10 members on a lovely walk in sunny weather in the environs of Llanberis. This unfortunately excluded the Pwllheli contingent who went to another car park but enjoyed a different (self-guided) walk around Llyn Padarn. The official route started at the Padarn Country Park, followed new paths through the pleasant community woodland of Coed Doctor, skirted the edge of Llanberis town and then turned under the Snowdon Railway viaduct up to the foot of the impressive Rhaeadr Ceunant. This was a magical spot for lunch, a deep rocky dell close to the rushing torrent of the falls and enclosed by verdant cliffs of mosses, lichens and ferns. The party then divided into two groups: one descended to Dolbadarn Castle, the other climbed higher for an even better view of the falls and a walk across the open uplands with fine views of Moel Eilio and towards Snowdon, descending by a woodland path to the Victoria Hotel. The groups then reunited for tea at Electric Mountain. This was an excellent walk of around 4-6 miles, depending on the route taken. Noel Davey
Sunday October 9th2016. Northern Rhinogydd. Roy Milnes led 9 members on a great walk in the Northern Rhinogydd in fine weather with bright sunny periods and a nippy breeze. This was the second excursion for the Club this year into this wonderful area of Snowdonia. The route started as before from west of Trawsfynydd and ascended steeply to the highest points of Moel Penolau and Ysgyfarnogod at about 2000ft. From there the walk turned south down the ridge, negotiating a number of prominent, but often unnamed craggy outcrops and the characteristic piles of stones designated on the OS map, finally reaching the southern terminal at Clip. Visibility was excellent all day, providing spectacular, far-reaching views in every direction. Lunch was taken in a sheltered rocky perch close to Llyn Corn-ystwc looking right down the mystical length of Penllyn as far as Ynys Enlli. The descent was made via Bwlch Gwylim and, with some difficulty, across the notorious bogs of Cwm Crawcwellt. One member picked up a tick in this lethal terrain but this was dealt with promptly and effectively. The party were relieved to regain the cars after a strenuous, but first class outing of 7 miles in 6 hours. Noel Davey
Thursday 29 September 2016. Betws-y-Coed, Conway Gorge. On a fine autumnal day Dafydd Williams led 21 ramblers on a 6 mile pleasant walk in Betws y Coed aptly named The Conwy Gorge, Fairy Glen, Conwy Falls and the Machno Falls walk. The walk started from the layby on the A470 near to the renowned Waterloo Bridge. The plaque on the Bridge indicates the engineer to be the famous Thomas Telford and the ironfounder, William Hazledine (1763 1840) and it is his face that appears on the plaque. From the bridge the route went towards Betws but very quickly goes round the back of the Waterloo Hotel and after a short walk through the woods it emerges on the old A5 and in half a mile on to and across the A470 at Beaver bridge. Then immediately right signposted Fairy Glen again on the old A5 where we are told our sitting A.M. has a residence. After a mile you emerge on the present A5 and on reaching the Conwy Falls restaurant you go right until you reach the Penmachno Woollen Mill which appeared to be closed. Turning right here we continued on the tarmac downhill and at our lunch stop we visited the Machno Falls the best of the numerous waterfalls on the route. Re-joining the A470 just short of Beaver Bridge we then re-joined the outward route and back to the layby. After which the majority of the walkers adjourned to The Royal Oak cafe for refreshments! An enjoyable day in an unfamiliar area of Betws y Coed to the majority of the walkers. Dafydd Williams.
Sunday Septmber 25th 2016. Moel Penamnen. On a bright but blustery day, Dafydd Williams led 9 ramblers on a fine walk on the Penamnen mountains, a distance of 9.2 miles with a cumulative 2500 ft ascent. The walk started at Dolwyddelan Station, following forest tracks on the eastern side of Cwm Pemamnen, then climbing steeply up to the ridge where superb vistas opened up of the moors and mountains from the Arenigs to Manod and the Moelwyns. Strong headwinds made navigation of the boggy ridge arduous but exhilarating. After skirting Foel Fras, we gained the peak of Moel Penamnen itself where lunch in its lee offered lovely views toward Moel Siabod, Tryfan and the peaks around Yr Wyddfa. We then followed the ridge northwards, dodging squally showers and rainbows. Finding the path down to the western side of Cwm Penamnen blocked by forestry work, the party descended by a more westerly path and followed the delightful Lledr Valley back to the car park, after a most enjoyable 5 hours in the hills. Noel Davey
Thursday 15 September 2016. Capel Curig. On a warm, sunny and beautiful autumn day, Mary Evans and Rhian Roberts led a party of 24 ramblers on a walk around Capel Curig starting from the car park adjoining Joe Browns high class walking and climbing retail shop. Turning right from the car park we continued for some 100 yards before turning sharp left at the gate on the old A5 and along a good track for the next mile before we arrived on the A 4086 . Left along the road for a short distance and then right past the gable end of Plas y Brenin, across the river bridge and then left and along the path which runs parallel to the river Llugwy. Before reaching and crossing the historic Pont Cyfyng, again on the old A5, we lunched in the welcome shelter of the trees. We then crossed the present A5 to the Bryn Glo Car Park and over a stile for an uphill section of some three quarters of a mile on a good path through the trees until we joined a path at a T junction and went left. It was then an easy walking mile until we reached the Church near the starting point and inevitably visited the nearby cafe where everyone partook of tea kindly paid for by Tecwyn Williams in recognition of the kindness extended to him by Club members during his long drawn out health problem. Dafydd Williams.
Sunday September 11th 2016. Ogwen Valley. There were two walks in the beautiful Ogwen Valley area on this fine but windy day: a linear A walk of some 9 miles and 4700 ft of cumulative ascent led by Noel Davey and a circular B walk of about 8 miles in length led by Dafydd Williams. 14 members started out together from Bethesda, climbing through the Braichmelyn Forest onto the open moorland of Cefn yr Orsedd. The parties went their separate ways at the sheepfolds after about 2.6 miles. The B walk descended by a well graded track to the Ogwen Valley, crossing the A5 and river, returning along the scenic Lon Las Ogwen track on the western side of the valley and skirting the vast Penrhyn Quarry . The A walk continued up onto the magnificent ridge of Carnedd Dafydd , involving an exhausting climb of 2000 ft over 2 miles. The party eventually reached the lower cairn which provided welcome refuge for a late lunch out of the full force of winds gusting to over 60 mph. A few struggled on to the nearby summit cairn, before all continued cautiously along the ridge to Pen yr Ole Wen maps and hats flying - enjoying glimpses of the superb mountain views in occasional lulls. The route then descended by the rocky eastern ridge into the relative calm of Cwm Lloer and along the boulder strewn path north of Llyn Ogwen, finally reaching Idwal Cottage for transport back to Bethesda. All in the party heroically rose to the challenge of this strenuous day out in the mountains. Noel Davey
Thursday September 1st 2016. Ynys Llanddwyn, Newborough Forest & Beach. Jean Norton and Marian Hopkins led 20 people on a pleasant 8.3 mile walk through the Newborough Forest to Ynys Llanddwyn. The day was mostly sunny and warm apart from a brisk south-westerly wind on the exposed coast. The many wide and well marked trails provided easy walking across the central section of the forest with ample opportunity for conversation. The ebbing tide allowed a safe crossing of the sandy isthmus to the island itself. After lunch near the pilots cottages and museum, there was time to visit the other main attractions of this magical beauty spot known for its chapel ruins and large crosses with links to the Santes Dwynwyn legend , the twin lighthouses and unusual pillow lava rocks caused by undersea volcanic activity. After admiring the fine views across the bay to Yr Eifl and Snowdonia, the party returned through the forest by another route having much enjoyed an always popular walk. Noel Davey
Sunday August 28th 2016. Moel Druman. Half a dozen members, led by Hugh Evans, enjoyed a superb Bank Holiday Sunday walking the Blaenau horseshoe, one of Snowdonias lesser known ridge walks. The route of just under 11 miles with some 2565 ft of ascent started at the end of the country road near Roman Bridge, climbing clockwise onto Mynydd Dyrnogydd above the Crimea Pass (Bwlch y Gorddinan). Damp mist at first restricted visibility on Allt Fawr, the highest point (about 2300ft), and at the pleasant lunch spot near the shores of the curiously named Llyn Conglog. However, the sun then broke through on Moel Druman to provide spectacular views across Snowdonia for the rest of the day, south towards the Moelwyns and Cnicht, with the Glaslyn beyond, north towards Lliwedd, Yr Wyddfa and Siabod, and to many other peaks seen from an unaccustomed angle. The walk continued over Ysgafell Wen, finally descending back to the Lledr Valley, completing a strenuous but most enjoyable day out. Noel Davey
Thursday August 18th 2016. Garn Boduan. Miriam Heald led 20 ramblers on a pleasant and relaxed jaunt up and around Garn Boduan from the south side, some 3 miles and 700 ft of ascent. An unannounced blockage of the public right of way, apparently due to (temporary ?) forest operations, required the start point to be shifted from the Stryd y Plas car park in Nefyn to the Bryn Cynan, entailing a tiresome car ferry to avoid the perils of the A497, but providing a good excuse for the party to quench their thirst at the pub afterwards. Warm hazy sunshine provided good walking conditions and lovely views across the nearby misty countryside. Lunch was taken on the vantage point of the iron age citadel on the summit. It was good to note that the large recently completed solar farm below was completely screened by summer vegetation. The slopes of the Garn were a magnificent tapestry of colours, the soft green of young self-seeded conifers, yellow gorse, purple heather and spectacular red flashes of rowan berries. Noel Davey
Sunday August 14th 2016. Pennal to Aberdyfi. Fresh from last Thursdays climb up Snowdon, Dafydd Williams led 9 walkers on a superb 12.2 mile linear walk from Pennal to Aberdyfi with a cumulative ascent over 3000ft. Weather conditions were cloudy but dry and bright with a light breeze, ideal for walking and providing excellent visibility. The route ascended steeply through a wooded landscape eventually reaching the high point of Tarren Hendre in time for lunch. From there the party followed a fine broad ridge with magnificent views across the Dyfi Valley, north to Cader Idris, and south and west across Cardigan Bay to Pembroke and Llyn; then down to Cwm Maethlon (Happy Valley) followed by a 500 ft ascent, the proverbial sting in the tail, before the final descent to Aberdyfi and a welcome stop in the pub while cars were retrieved for the journey home. A long but most rewarding day. Noel Davey.
Thursday August 11th 2016. Snowdon - Rangers Path. 80th Birthday Celebration. The Club celebrated Dafydd William s 80th birthday with an ascent of Snowdon. 26 members, family and friends assembled in the Snowdon Ranger car park and 21 eventually reached the summit, a creditable achievement given the appalling weather conditions. Particular congratulations to those tackling Snowdon for the first time or not for some years. The Ranger path ascends about 3000 ft over 4.3 miles and while not as difficult as some other routes it was a gruelling ascent in mist and unrelenting rain, like climbing through an endless wet slippery grey tunnel. After a brief photo call on the precarious summit cairn, miraculously vacant for a few moments, the party squeezed into the heaving cafe to snatch a bite of lunch, before the long trudge back down. As we neared the end the rain had ceased and lovely views of the Gwyrfai valley and Llyn Cwellyn opened up, at last. It was a relief to regain the car park after something of a 7 hour ordeal, but with a rewarding sense of achievement given the elements. Dafydd led throughout with customary aplomb, agility and confidence. Recovery was swift thanks to a royal entertainment of tea, cake and champagne at Catherine and Dafydd’s home afterwards, where we were delighted to be joined by several other members . Penblwydd Hapus, Dafydd! We now look forward to a repeat performance on your 90th. Noel Davey.
Thursday August 4th. Y Fron Circular. Another good Thursday walk, this time enjoyed by 16 ramblers led by Ian and Kath Spencer. The route of 6 miles started from the upland village of Y Fron and circulated across the interesting plateau landscape of heather moor, small hills, scattered houses and remnants of the slate quarries that characterise this area. After an unpromising start in damp mist, the day brightened and the rain held off. The lunch spot provided lovely views of a sunlit Caernarfon castle and of the Menai and Newborough beyond. Noel Davey