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Saturday, 18 May 2013

A Wet Weekend In Barmouth, Wales............

But a great weekend. We had this weekend booked in Barmouth a few months ago that saw us stay in the Min y Mor pub/hotel overlooking the Cardigan Bay. It was to be more of a relaxing few days by the sea with a bit of sun while walking along the beach and trying to catch a glimpse of the dolphins that use this area. We had planned a bike ride down the Mawddach Trail which we have done before and also walked quite a bit of it, which is a fair old walk there and back covering about 20 miles. We left home about 10.30 on Friday 10th May in heavy rain!! but arrived in Barmouth a few hours later in dry, overcast and very windy conditions. It was also cold and very different to four days ago in the mountains. After we got booked in we decided to have a walk on the front and down to the foot bridge that takes you over to the other side of the Estuary and to Fairbourne.
The wind was whipping across the bridge here and Jill was having a bad hair day, no such worries for me though:-)
 We got to the other side and decided to have a wander along the shore by way of up and over a small hill by following a marked path. We got to the point where we were just about to go up when a farmer told us we couldn't and had to follow the road as it was lambing season so that's what we did.
We followed the road round to some houses and came into a small bay area where we had some great views back towards an overcast Barmouth and down the estuary
Afer we left the bay area we followed the path round but it was closed due to maintence and so we had to go on the horse track that led us onto the main Mawddach trail, following some sheep
The main trail is an old dissused rail track which runs all the way to Dolgellau, some 10 miles away. It's a great place which is popular with walkers, bikers, horse riders and almost anyone who enjoys being out and about. there is a great diversity of wildlife along the trail which makes it very interesting.We made our way back and along the bridge back into town where I decided to take a walk along the top edge of the hills directly above the town. From up here there are some great views, especially on good sunny clear days. Today was still cloudy and cold but at least the clouds were lifting from the high mountain range of Cader Idris across the bay. I made my way up the steep steps from the main road and made my way on to the Panorama Walk section where there is a good place to rest with a great view over to where we had walked over the bridge and also across to the mountains of Cader Idris
I followed the path that takes you round over the town and where there are a few tracks to follow. I found my way on to the Taith Ardudwy Way which snakes round the heather filled hills coming across old buildings

and on to a memorial cairn for fallen soldiers of the first world war in 1916 from the Birmingham District
There was some great views down towards our hotel and sea front from here but I didn't hang around as the wind was a bit strong and had quite a bite to it
I made my way down one of the paths and past an entrance to a tunnel that I would of gone in if I had my torch with me. One for next time I think
I made my way down and back on to the sea front where the weather conditions was making it feel more like early winter than late spring. There was also a lack of people and dolphins and it just didn't feel like a popular seaside resort, with the palm trees blowing in the strong wind it felt a bit weird.
We finished the day off with a few beers and a game or two of pool :-)

Saturday started off much the same way as Friday with heavy rain and wind and we didn't venture out until midday when the rain finally stopped. There was a kite festival being held on the beach but when we passed there was only two kites out because of the conditions and we were later told that it had been called off!
This is the day we decided to have a bike ride into Dolgellau along the trail, about 20 miles there and back and we encountered all sorts of weather, from cold wind, warm sun, thunder, lightening, hailstones and rain! A typical late spring day in the UK really :-)

Sheld Ducks on the Estuary
Blue skies appearing
A look back to a distant Barmouth bathed in sunshine
The toll bridge over the estuary at the George III Hotel Penmaenpool
Sunny ride through the woods
Dolgellau Bridge over the Afon Wnion
The long ride back to Barmouth
Cader Idris bathed in sun high over Dolgellau
George III Hotel & toll bridge
A storm is brewing over the distant Rhinog Mountains
Here comes the rain
And the hailstone
View down the estuary from the bridge
View back down to the bridge and storm clouds over the Idris range
Barmouth Harbour
A very quiet & windy sea front

SUNDAY was to be another wet, windy & cold day and we decided that we would have a drive up towards Capel Curig and have a look round one of the Llyns for a future visit. We went to Llyn Geirionydd which is in the Gwydyr Forest not far from where I enjoyed the summer like conditions a few days before. A great place to explore on foot and bike with lots of Walks & Trails to follow. This was just a short walk to get a feel for the place and despite the cold & windy conditions on the day, it's a place that we will be back to for a good look round
A very overcast Llyn Geirionydd
Water skiers enjoying the conditions
Looking back down Llyn Geirionydd
The Taliesin Cross above the Llyn
The Trail that we were on
An old broken but still living tree
The strong wind making waves on the llyn
Old mine buildings at Hafna on the Gwydyr miners trail
Despite the weather this was another enjoyable couple of days in this great area of Wales that is Snowdonia National Park


  1. Love this part of the world! Memories of wild and windy camping holidays on Shell Island!

  2. Gotta love the weather, what would we have to talk about otherwise? Sky in picture 13 is wonderful, cos it doesn't look like sky! :-)