Archive for the ‘pen twyn glas’ Tag

Breakfast in the Sun   15 comments

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I’m a bit behind on the blog again so let me take you back to the recent spell of hot weather. No, not that one, the one before that, must have been mid-April, maybe. Anyway a few days of hot sunny weather had us planning a some wild camping but forecasts of heavy storms put me off. The best of weather seemed to be Saturday morning and we didn’t want to waste it driving and packing. Me and Sherpa Junior were up and out early with plans to have breakfast on Table Mountain. The day began with a relentless and steep climb to Table Mountain

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There were clouds gathering and I feared that the promised storms were on their way earlier than predicted

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Not before we reached Table Mountain though where the skies were clear again and after a wander about we settled down for a feast

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I’ve often thought about camping up here but its not nearly as flat as it looks from a distance. In fact its extremely lumpy and you’d do well to find a spot flat enough for one person to sleep in comfort

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Its a fine place though and this early in the morning we had it to ourselves.

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The views across the Usk valley to the Brecon Beacons are superb

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We feasted on freshly cooked bacon and egg butties and homemade bread. TJS was sceptical that I could both transport safely and then fry an egg on a  camping stove but I am a man of many skills and managed both without even breaking the yolk. Masterful

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Suitably stuffed we headed off to burn off the calories we’d just consumed.

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Looking back to the very distinctive Table Mountain

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It’s a long high stroll across the two summits of Pen Cerrig Calch and Pen All Mawr, the former with the distinction of a Limestone cap above the more resistant rocks. White limestone boulders seem oddly out of place amongst peat and heather

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We arrived on the latter and bid good morning to a couple of backpackers. They looked a little unhappy, possibly due to the enormous packs they were carrying and the fact they looked dressed for winter (waterproofs, woolly hats etc). It was hot and sultry and most definitely shorts and t-shirt weather.

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The views were hazy now but it was still warm and we sat on the summit and had a brief rest and power-nap

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The clouds rolled in and we were treated to a brief light shower that seemed to herald the storms. A few minutes later it was clear again and blue skies were back in the ascendency. We ambled down the long ridge of Tal Trwynau, one of my favourites.

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Rather than trudge back down the road to the car we climbed halfway back up the hillside to the fine traversing path across the flanks of the hills we’d been up earlier. A little navigational incompetence from me added some unexpected fences and walls to cross but otherwise a fine finish as the clouds started to look threatening again (although the storms never amounted to much and we’d have been fine camping out)

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A good 10 miles under the belt and pushing towards 3,000 feet of ascent.

Table Mountain

 

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The Dry Day of the Holidays   6 comments

The Xmas and New Year holiday had one overriding theme – RAIN – loads of it. This was I think the only day while I was off work when it didn’t rain at some point. Me and TJS made the most of it with a walk in the SW corner of the Black Mountains. By way of contrast me and TBF did pretty much the same walk in late September a couple of years ago in a mini-heatwave withe temperatures in the high 20’s. Route map and descriptions are in that post for the factual amongst you.

This time we had to amend the walk as the small parking space was full so some road walking was needed. We headed up direct onto Table Mountain past a couple of rather nice holiday cottages where much Xmas celebration had been going on judging the piles of bottles by the cars waiting to be taken out. The sky was a deep blue and the autumnal views (we haven’t really had a winter this year) were sublime

Sugar Loaf

Table Mountain

Crug Mawr

Sugar Loaf

Up on Table Mountain there were groups of people watching the beagles following a trail on the hills

Sugar Loaf, Table Mountain

Pen Cerrig Calch, Sugar Loaf

The summit of Pen Cerrig Calch there were flecks of snow to remind us that despite the warm start it was winter

Pen Cerrig Calch

The walking up here is easy and we covered good ground looking for a spot out of the wind for lunch. We managed to find a ledge near the top of Pen Allt Mawr tucked into the heather

Pen Allt Mawr

We had an excellent view over Mynydd Llangorse and Mynydd Troed that we climbed last New Year

Mynydd Llangorse, Mynydd Troed

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The Sugar Loaf with its prominent summit held my gaze and my lens all day especially as it caught the late afternoon sun

Sugar Loaf

Waun Fach

Sugar Loaf

It wasn’t a day for stopping. Daylight is in short supply in December and this walk pushes ten miles. We managed to get back down to the road before it got dark. The long tramp back down the road to the car was pleasant in the encroaching darkness as we chatted over a fine expedition. Total darkness had enveloped us as we reached the car. An excellent and dry day, a rarity in the months that followed

Pen Cerrig Calch

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