Spring Interlude   12 comments

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The Beasts from the East seem to have had domain over the British weather this year with another one apparently on the horizon for Easter. How pleasant it was then for a walk that didn’t involve putting on goggles and burying my head in a waterproof. The rest of the family were otherwise engaged so a solo walk in one of my favourite parts of the Black Mountains.

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Parking was full in Capel y Ffin so I headed up the very narrow lane in the Nant Bwch valley. Where you reach open fell there is plenty of off-road parking. As I’d be walking back that way anyway it made no difference to the route. It was a glorious day and warm enough to ditch warm hats for a baseball cap to keep the sun off

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I dropped into the village having decided to do the route the other way around from how I’ve tackled it before.

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The best part of the route is a splendid path that traverses between the fields and the open fell. I’ve always walked this stretch at the end of the day when it’s in shadow. This time it was in warm sunshine and its an absolute pleasure

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Despite the number of cars in the village and on the valley road, I saw no-one. Not sure why I’ve never seen anyone on this path as it’s an obvious route and a joy to walk

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Lost in my own thoughts and in the views of fell and field I ate up the miles as the path slowly climbs onto the shoulder of Bal Mawr

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It was half past lunchtime when I reached the ridge so I hunkered down in a heather and horse manure filled hollow for lunch. The views across Ysgyryd Mawr and the Sugar Loaf, all the way to the Severn Estuary and the Mendips were extensive

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So began the long back along the ridge paralleling my route in the valley below

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Its a fine ridge and the miles continued to roll by

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It was clear and sunny but the clouds were starting to fill in and it was chilly in the breeze

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Always hard not look self-conscious and concerned whenever I take a selfie

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The stretch that leads along towards the north edge of the Black Mountains escarpment is a bit of trudge and a boggy one at that.

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Time for a brief rest while sun was out

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Once above the higher reaches of the Nant Bwch valley I cut off from the path across country and back down to the path home. It looked a little rough but I managed to thread together a mix of sheep and pony tracks that made a rather easy route

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Quite surprised to see this walk ended up over 13 miles. My knees, feet and hips were feeling it by the end. A fine warm day before another spell of winter

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12 responses to “Spring Interlude

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  1. Fabulous views! I hope you brought some hoss muck home for your garden. Did I miscount or did you only have one butty stop on this outing? Standards are slipping!

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    beatingthebounds
    • I prefer to leave the muck where it was – there are enough unpleasant things lurking in the dark recesses of my pack! I managed to slip in an afternoon snack stop for a a cereal bar

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  2. Glad the weather was nice enough for a spring trek.

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  3. It could be summer with those skies. Fantastic views along that ridge as well

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    • After such prolonged cold winter it felt genuinely odd to to be walking in warm conditions. Some of the ridges in the Black Mountains can be a little broad and bland but this one is much narrower and offers a much better walk and views

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  4. That does look nice there and it’s the type of countryside I really enjoy- lush farmland, not too steep mountains and good ridges.

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    Blue Sky Scotland
    • The Vale of Ewyas is a real beauty, perfect combination of green arable fields against the dark moorland above. Probably my favourite walk in the Black Mountains, especially on a spring day

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  5. An impressive walk, looks really lovely in the early spring sunshine.

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    Brenda-Dawn Linney
  6. Totally enjoyed this hike in the Black Mountains. Open sunny vistas, beckoning to be explored. Hope your Easter weather isn’t too dismal. We finally have sunshine but the forecast for the Commonwealth Games opening isn’t good.

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    • Thanks Helen. The Black Mountains sit on the edge of the uplands of South Wales hence the broad open views. Easter has been ok in the UK, cold but largely dry so far.

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