Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Carreg Cennen Circular

I was unable to make the usual Monday walk in the company of "The Navigator" but remedied this by a walk today, Tuesday.

The route was taken from Alan Richards book "Great Walks in Carmarthenshire vol. 1" and we chose the Mynydd Du Tair Carn Isaf and Tair Carn Uchaf walk, or as I have called it in the title of this blog.


We parked the car at Carreg Cennen Castle and walked up towards the castle, but we were not visiting today and Cadw did not benefit. Apparently the castle although managed by Cadw is privately owned owing to a legal error - it's on Google.

We took the delightful path leading downhill to the Afon Cennen where we met a couple of Park Rangers repairing the pointing on the bridge.  The weather was perfect with lots of blue sky and some actual warmth to the sunshine.  Mr Richards suggests an alternative if the mist is down, but not a problem today. We clambered up onto the ridge and then to one of the cairns of Tair Carn Uchaf for lunch.

It was then a straightforward walk down the ridge to Tair Carn Isaf where a rock a rock artist had been at work.

We then took a direct route down the hillside to join a minor road for a short while before crossing a stile into the field en route for the source of the Lougher. As we left the road a mini bus of students were loading up and it looked like they had been caving - rather them than me.

Despite the dire warning sign of the landowner we walked down to the river and got very close to the cave entrance from whence springs the river.

It was then an easy walk (apart from the short steep bit) back to the car.

Throughout most of the walk there were good views of the castle and from the ridge, views to the Gower peninsula.

Hopefully spring or early summer has at last arrived.

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Penally to Lydstep

Part of the Celtic Haven deal was the chance to receive some spa/beauty treatment.  Clearly the challenge to alter my looks would have been immense and so my wife reluctantly sacrificed a chance for a wet walk.


Out came the bus pass and I caught a bus to Penally and walked back to Lydstep.  the weather was damp and misty which led to the donning of full waterproofs.  What foresight Mrs Bob has.

Penally Church
  However despite the weather the coast rarely disappoints.

Tenby South Beach

Caldey Island

St Margarets

Inaccessible beach

A big hole

It was a short walk and I was soon back at base where another swim was had followed by a coffee and a read on a very comfortable settee, whilst I waited for the vision to appear.

A good break was had by all.

Lydstep Circular 2

We had visited Tenby on the Sunday morning and then back to the Celtic Haven for a Sunday lunch with all the trimmings followed by a pud.  This resulted in a short snooze but my conscious kicked in and with Mrs Bob's permission set off for a short walk.


I walked down through the Lydstep Holiday village and then east along the coast path for a while. I then cut inland using footpaths (actually on the ground) and minor roads to the north of the Celtic Haven and returned feeling a bit holier having walked at least the pud off.

Lydstep Circular 1

To celebrate my wife's birthday I had booked a short break at the Celtic Haven between Tenby and Manorbier Pembs. The weather forecast for Saturday was looking good and a walk to Manorbier along the coast was decided on.


Caldey Island

Lydstep Bay

Climbing up from the beach from Lydstep Bay we walked through a woodland thick with wild garlic.

Wild Garlic

This part of coastal path does have some steep up and downs but the promise of a cafe lunch kept Mrs Bob going.

One of the Ups

Apprentice navigator

Just as we stopped for banana break a sea mist suddenly appeared which spoiled the views although inland was fine.

The mist comes in

Nearing Manorbier we passed a zawn, a  narrow slot in the cliff and then a cromlech known as the Kings Quoit and examples of spring bursting out.

At last Manorbier

Kings Quoit

Turning into the bay, Manorbier castle came into view.It was closed due to a wedding taking place.

Manorbier Castle

No it's not!

Manorbier Church

Anyway we were heading for the cafe "Beach Break" where we had a good lunch.
Suitably refreshed we headed back partly inland to avoid some but not all of the ups and downs.  Not far from Lydstep a young family were walking in front of us when we heard one of them shout that they had seen a snake!  They had indeed, an adder sunbathing just off the path.  This was a first for my wife and has now probably put the aforementioned family off country walking!

An adder

Back at the cottage we had a well deserved cup of tea and then I went for a swim - not in the sea but a swimming pool and shortly after a two course meal in the restaurant. If "The Navigator" reads this he should realise that not all walks have to be through bogs and mud sitting in a damp field drinking from a flask! He won't change.

Monday, 15 April 2013

Brynamman Circular

The usual Sunday chat with "The Navigator" told me we were off to Brynamman to walk north onto the southern hills and moorland of the Black Mountain.


We parked opposite the Black Mountain Centre but disregarded the advertised "Builders Breakfast" which consisted of 15 items for £5.95!

"The Navigator" had a leaflet which showed a walk which would form part of our overall walk and which led us down to the Afon Aman. We were well wrapped up for a winters day but along came a lady  dressed for a summers day walking three dogs.  She explained she was hot! This could have been a slapped face encounter but everyone maintained their dignity. We continued along the Aman for a while and then turned north to follow the Nant Garw river and valley.

Our mid morning break coincided with finding a convenient bench in memory of a young lad called Zac.

The steep sided valley contained a narrow path which eventually gave way to a more wider aspect.

The closeness of the road was occasionally utilized as somewhere to throw down assorted rubbish such as an office chair and a few car wheels but overall  a pleasant walk if not a bit damp in places.

We continued to follow Nant Garw and then headed up to the road near the non existent buildings shown on the map (near the "w" in Nant Garw). We crossed the road and onto the moor and around Garreg Fraith and the headed south on the path leading back to Brynamman. The path was quite boggy in places and in one place "Mrs Navigator" came close to losing a boot.  Take care if walking here after a typical Welsh winter.

Back at Brynamman we called back in the Black Mountain Centre and by luck met Alan Richards the author of "Great Walks in Carmarthenshire" and we had an interesting chat.  I have recommended his books a few times in previous blogs.