Cydweli (Kidwelly)

The navigator had suggested a walk which was not far from our respective homes as they could not meet me until 1000 and Mrs Navigator had an important engagement with the W.I. that evening  and needed to be home early.

Route

I had been promised that at least part of the walk would be new to me and in fact the early part was indeed new. We parked in Cydweli and walked to the renovated quay area which overlooked the estuary of the Afon Gwendraeth Fach. There were a number of keen bird watchers here with some expensive binoculars and cameras. We saw curlew, egrets and various gulls and a a little further inland a kingfisher.

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Estuary of Afon Gwendraeth Fach

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Cydweli Quay

We followed the  canal until we met the road into Cydweli and then followed a bridleway/cycle trail crossing the main road and up onto Mynydd y Garreg. We had lunch near the school which provided excellent views over to Caldey Island and to the south the Gower Peninsula. At the summit of Mynydd Y Garreg the views again were extensive to include the Carmarthen Fans to the north east.

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One of the attractive green lanes

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Caldey island in the distance

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The Gower

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Near Mynydd Y Garreg Village Hall

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Carmarthen Fans in the distance

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Bacon!!

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Trumps view outside of USA

The walk now took us downhill  to the main Carmarthen Llanelli road where we climbed the other side of the valley heading for Llwyn y Barcud and the farms of Penlan.

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Any idea?

We had planned to take the byway from Penlan Uchaf down to Cydwel but that path was not obvious despite us all walking it some years ago. We may have been thrown by the building  of a huge barn close to where we thought the path was.

We decided to follow another footpath taking us in a more westerly direction and eventually back tot he car. Hey ho!!

Mynydd Myddfai

Paul telephoned on Saturday evening proposing a walk on Mynydd Myddfai. We had walked this route back in the summer but had made a navigation error and the weather had been a bit grim and here was a chance to put things right!

Route

It was a good autumnal day and we parked at the village hall in Myddfai village. The route takes in the first part of the Physicians Well walk and then a gradual climb to the trig point on Mynydd Myddfai.

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A frosty start

On the lane on our way out we were passed by a number of 4 x 4’s and we saw them again on our way back. Some had two way radios and we also saw a number of people coming off the hill with dogs. I’m sure it was all legal.

Our ascent was watched by a group of mountain ponies. From the trig there were good views all around.

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Looking towards Carmarthen Fans

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Looking east from the trig point

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Our previous walk went a little awry  from here when we walked down the wrong side of the valley but being more observant this time all went well and it was a steady walk downhill and along lanes back to the village hall. It seemed rude not to have a coffee and a slice of bara brith.

LLandybie Circular

The Navigator’s choice today was for a fairly local walk based on Llandybie and Carmel Woods National Nature Reserve

We would also be seeing a particular site which was the only one in Britain and it was a turlough – click on link for further information.

Route

We parked  by one of the entrances to the Nature Reserve and set off heading for Llandybie.

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Looks like an old toad

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.Through the wonder of Wikipedia I find that it was in Llandybie the mineral Brammallite was found, I still do not know what it is!

At spot height 204 was a viewing point with a rustic shelter which even gave its grid reference. A lovely woodland path took us into the village of Llandybie passing an old public house.

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We then followed a small tributary of the Afon Lougher where we found a spot for a coffee break and then headed south and west passing an old tip which was being reworked. Near Blaenau the route took us north up a steep lane towards Garn where we entered Carmel Nature Reserve and then to view the huge disused quarry  and of course the turlough which of course looks like a small lake,before returning to our car.

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The blue sign soon to be a sign of the past.

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An exiting turlough

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Nearly there.

The walk took place on 5th October but we were in warm sunshine all  day.

 

Brechfa

Our walk today was centred on Brechfa.

Route

There was no steady walk in but first  through a ford and then a steep climb alongside Banc y Darren. Did we stay up high, of course not we descended down to the Afon Cothi.

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Looking down the steep lane

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Road?

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Did we stay down, of course not we climbed again before a final long and windy descent again to the Afon Cothi.

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Bracket fungi of some kind

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Brechfa in the distance

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We did have a bit of an adventure towards the end when the path we chose (i.e. The so called Navigator) led to a slash and burn episode, but we made it onto the correct path.

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Trust me…..

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This is the way…

The views all day were lovely and topped by seeing a kingfisher land on a piling as we re-crossed the ford near to base.

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He does walk on water!

 

Dolaucothi

Today’s walk was chosen by Paul and taken from Cicerone Guide to walks in Carmarthenshire. The other members of our little band were missing today.

Route

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We parked in the Goldmine car park (National Trust) and headed up hill to Caio, a small village which at least still has a pub.

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This is not a post code!

From the village we walked into the woodlands and continued uphill until we reached the top with fine views of the countryside opening out. It was a little hazy and not the best for photos.

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The route now took us down hill to the Cothi Valley and walk downstream back to the Gold Mines. What did the Romans ever do for us?

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Oh and it stayed dry.

Mynydd Myddfai

It was just Paul and I today and we chose a walk from the Cicerone publication, “Walking in Carmarthenshire”, which was to lead us onto Mynydd Myddfai.

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Route

We parked at the Myddfai Village Community Hall and Visitor centre. We were too early for a coffee but we should be back well before 1700 when it closes.

The first part of the walk follows the Physicians Trail – a leaflet can be obtained from the centre, although a reprint was awaited – leading to the Physicians Well. From here the walk climbed steadily to the trig point on the summit of Mynydd Myddfai.

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Climbing out of Myddfai

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Pretty

There were some good views of the surrounding countryside including  the Carmarthen Fans, Pen y Fan and Corn Ddu in the Brecon Beacons. The former had some cloud cover but those in the Beacons were clear.

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This way to the Physicians Well

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Carmarthen Fans

We had lunch at the trig point and could see the forecast rain rapidly approaching and so fully kitted out we continued our walk.

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Over tousers? Yes

We thought we could take a short cut down the hill but it led us astray for a short while but we were soon back on track without the necessity of calling out mountain rescue.

The way back to Myddfai was by way of a quiet lane where we celebrated our day with coffee and bara brith.

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Odd sculpture, perils of war?

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Reward

Cilycwm

Another cracking weather day to look forward to and we were off to Cilycwm in the upper Afon Tywi area. Daisy was disappointed as Paul was slumming it in Crickhowell celebrating a birthday.

Route

The “Navigator” did inform us that the chosen route although on the map may not be there on the ground but it was. In addition Carmarthen Council who I frequently grumble about had clearly been investing money installing new gates and waymarks, hooray!

We headed north to climb the unnamed hill near Penfedw Fawr where we had our first coffee break. from there we entered the woodlands of Cwm Rhaeadr and could see in the distance the waterfall which gives its name to the cwm.

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You can just make out the waterfall

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Route 66?

We went a little off piste, talking you see, which meant a climb but well worth it with the views which enfolded.

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Daisy cooling off

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Wood pile porn

We descended down to the Afon Tywi and walked through the campsite in Rhandirmwyn – recommended and then stayed close to the river as walked downstream to Dolachddu. My gadget stopped working here but the route continued along the quiet lane back to the car.

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Pendine Circular

The “Navigator” gave me a limited choice for today’s walk, Laugharne or Pendine, I chose the latter. The forecast looked a little marginal with rain forecast to 0900 then dull with rain again at 1600.

Chris phoned at 0730 with rain pouring down but I gave him short shrift and said the walk was on, especially as I had just made my sandwiches.

We had a full house today including the lovely laid back Daisy and we left for Pendine and found some free parking and set off uphill heading north west and away from the coast.

 

Route ( the gubbins failed to record a short part  back down to Pendine)

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Hard times when single eggs for sale

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Lime Kiln

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Another lime kiln

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Coffee break

The route took us towards and onto Marros Mountain and then south down to the coast at Telpyn Point.

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Still plenty of bluebells about.

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A good grip was welcomed.

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Attractive gate statue

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Looking  east from Telpyn Point

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Looking west from Telpyn Point

We descended to Marros Sands where we spotted our first naturists of the season. We averted our gaze and walked down towards the sea to look for evidence of the petrified forest

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Caves on Marros sands

 

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Petrified stump

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Daisy finding something smelly to rub in.

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Our way forward was now a long slog upwards followed by a steep descent and another steep uphill climb before the never ending Pendine Sands came into view.

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Looking back to one of the steep descents

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Pendine

As forecast, the rain did make some attempt but was just enough to cool us down as we climbed the aforementioned hill but soon petered out. Back in Carmarthen we heard later that there had been thunder and a huge downpour. Luckily for us the Devil looks after us!

 

Ffairfach Circular

The “Navigator” had called this walk “joining the dots” linking well known areas together. It could have been called a stylish walk as we think we crossed some 30 styles!

Route

We parked in the Woodlands Trust carpark in Ffairfach and then headed across the road to walk north along the Afon Tywi to cross the river by the pedestrian footbridge. It’s not clever to jump up and down to make it shake – especially at our age!

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The path leads into Llandeilo town passing the colourful town houses.

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We turned into the lane  into the Dinefwr Estate and we of course left the path and climbed up the steep muddy path and onto the carriage road and then into Penlan Park. Despite visiting Llandeilo on numerous occasion this was first visit to the park. Well worth the diversion as the views are worthwhile.

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Path to the Dinefwr Estate

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On leaving Llandeilo we cracked on soon to be following various footpaths which took us to the Afon Cennen. Trapp and close to the magnificent Carreg Cennen castle.

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My favourite dogs

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Afon Cennen

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Daisy cooling off

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Trapp

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Dog tired

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From her e we headed back to the car via Tregyb Woodland. and the scuplture trail.

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Resembles the “Navigator”?

By the end of the walk rain was threatening but did not arrive until I was safely home.