Pen Dinas and Nant-y-Moch – family walking time   6 comments

The family was spending the whole of October half-term week at my parents caravan in Clarach while I had to return home to work. If you read my post about one of my trips to the Black Mountains then you’ll know my personal work circumstances have taken a turn for the worse. However this does give me certain advantages in the short-term. On the Thursday night I decided that Nokia could start getting used to life without me the following day so I headed off back down to Wales to spend a bonus day with the family.

Turns out to be an inspired move as the weather was stunning, crystal clear blue sky autumn day. In the morning we headed off to climb the small hill of Pen Dinas that overlooks Aberystwyth to the south.

When I was younger I don’t remember ever noticing this small eminence let alone a wish to climb to the top. Aberystwyth is an oddly named place as the town is built on the Rheidol and the Ystwyth enters the sea at the bottom of Pen Dinas hill right on the extreme south edge of town. It would be better named Aberrheidol.

We parked up at the bottom of the hill and took an initial stroll out onto the long harbour wall that protects the marina. The sea was calm and morning sunshine was better than sitting in my office at home or at work!


Aberytstwyth Harbour


Pen Dinas Hill

We walked past the large and elaborate houses on the lower slopes and picked up a path that climbs about halfway up and then traverses right across its sea-facing slopes to the other end of the ridge. The path was delightful with views over the harbour, the long shingle beach and steep hill and cliffs of Allt Wen (a route for next spring).


Allt Wen

There were even some very late season blackberries for the kids to munch on amongst the still flowering gorse.


Gorse and Blackberries


Summit and Monument

The views from the top were wide and expansive taking in Pembrokeshire, the Preseli hills, Plynlimon climbed the previous weekend, Cadair Idris and Snowdon.


Plynlimon and Cambrian Mountains

As always on a clear day you could make out Carn Fadryn on the Lleyn Peninsula to the north which is one of my favourite small hills and a regular on our annual trip there every July (you can read about the last visit here). The large monument is in tribute to the Duke of Wellington’s victory at Waterloo by some local dignitary or other. We decided to return by a lower path which was perilously close to a housing estate. Perilous for us in that it was used as a dog exercise walk and was liberally scattered with poo but we escaped unscathed.

The weather was so good that we headed out for a second walk in the afternoon after a whistle-stop lunch.

I wanted to show Jane and the kids the area I’d walked in last week so we parked up again at the Maesnant road by Nant-y-Moch and took a gentle stroll up the road towards the Llyn Llygad Rheidol reservoir.


Jane, Nant-y-Moch

The views and the light in and around the small lakes I’d passed last week was even better and the kids enjoyed the puddles and the mud and the fact that it was an easy walk on well-made path.


Sunlight on the lake


L takes her time

The views were great and I was pleased to be able to share the delights of the area I’d so enjoyed last week. D in particular was pleased to see Cadair Idris which we climbed earlier this year. It was warm enough to just amble about showing the kids the views and the sights (including me demonstrating how wet the area just off the path was!) and me taking loads of atmospheric photos. The kids seemed to take some odd pleasure in extracting the soft fleshy insides (“foam” they called it) from the long reed grasses – takes all sorts I suppose


Looking north to Cadair Idris

It was getting late and the final stretch of the path to the lake was in the shade so we decided not to go all the way. We wandered back as the sun was setting and the kids were pleased to have walked over 5 miles over both walks.


Heading home


Steep descent


Muddy boots!


Setting sun

I was pleased I’d decided that my time was better spent enjoying this time with the family rather than at work. 🙂


6 responses to “Pen Dinas and Nant-y-Moch – family walking time

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  1. Nant-y-moch is well worth a second visit. And third, and fourth and………………


  2. “time was better spent enjoying this time with the family rather than at work.”
    Always the case, but not always possible sadly. Especially good if the sun is shining and you have a lovely area to explore. It looks like this was the same day that we were exploring the standing stones, watermill and ‘caves’ near Little Salkeld.


    • Yep, I’m taking advantage of this situation while I can. I have to make sure that I keep work happy and meet my commitments but as far as I’m concerned the rest of the time is my own. I’ve been pretty lucky with the weather the last few weeks when I’ve been out

      Plynlimon post is up by the way


  3. interesting music choice there for the slideshow… I’m sitting here debating heading out, but need to listen to something uplifting now to get me in the mood 🙂


  4. Nice song, appropriate title. I was feeling mellow when I put it together.

    Uplifting? You could go for some Mahler if classical is your bag. Or something noisy in the “get the hell out now!” vein – something by Husker Du perhaps. Or something quirky, try “Take the skinheads bowling” by the wonderfully named Camper van Beethoven – listening to that now in fact


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