Categories
Nature

Aberglaslyn Pass

The Aberglaslyn Pass is a narrow gorge from Pont Aberglaslyn to Beddgellert.

Pont Aberglaslyn

Beddgelert

A summer evening at Gelert’s Grave
Categories
Forests

Nant-y-Ffrith

Intro stuff

Location

Waterfalls

Upper waterfall

The uppermost section of this waterfall is artificial and was likely constructed in the 1800s, at the same time as the steps alongside which have now fallen into disrepair. It is said these steps once connected all three waterfalls making them easily accessible for public viewing, but it is no longer possible to descend beyond the upper waterfall area via the steps and few signs of them remain further down the valley.

Middle waterfall

Lower waterfall

Nant-y-Ffrith Lower Waterfall

Walking routes

Nant-y-Ffrith Hall

Nant-y-Ffrith Road

Reservoir

Nant-y-Ffrith-Reservoir
Photo © Colin Park (cc-by-sa/2.0)

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Categories
Nature

Parys Mountain

Parys Mountain is the site of an enormous 18th-century copper mine, though the first signs of copper extraction here date back around 4,000 years. The mine was the largest in Europe during the 1780s and dominated the global market.

Soil contamination means little life survives on the mountain and creates a surreal, almost-Martian landscape where rare plants can flourish.

Free to use images

Professional images often can’t be used without hefty licencing fees. The lack of freely-available images can stifle local bloggers, content creators, students and even Wikipedia editors. To help combat this, we’ll be releasing a selection of our own images from recent festivals under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence.

This means anyone can use the photos on this page, for free, for any reason, on the basis that:

  • You credit the image to SustainableDaysOut wherever used and include a link to this page
  • You state the image has been used under a ‘CC BY 4.0‘ licence and include a link to the licence terms

This applies to the images below, on this page only and not to any other content on this website.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Categories
Hills and Mountains Nature

Penycloddiau

Penycloddiau is a hill in the Clwydian Range a couple of summits to the north of Moel Famau. Like Foel Fenlii and Moel Arthur, the summit is a former Iron Age hillfort with defences such as ramparts that survive to this day.

Covering an area of 21 hectares, Penycloddiau is the largest hillfort in Wales with a summit 440 metres above sea level. This makes it the 8th-highest summit in the Cwydian Range, with Moel Famau, the tallest, standing at 554 metres.

Bronze age burial mounds are visible on Penycloddiau, dating back over 4,000 years. The iron age hillfort and associated ramparts were built around 2,500 years ago. Historians believe hillforts such as this could also have been used for celebrations and markets.

Walks

From the car park, the walk to the summit is shorter and gentler than a climb up Moel Famau, Moel Arthur or Foel Fenlii.

Take the track heading uphill into the forest from the car park, then follow the path leading off to the right when you quickly arrive at the junction seen below.

Penycloddiau walk first junction

Facilities

There is a small, free car park available.

There is no lighting, even in the car park, and no toilets available.

Penycloddiau car park

Free to use images

Professional images often can’t be used without hefty licencing fees. The lack of freely-available images can stifle local bloggers, content creators, students and even Wikipedia editors. To help combat this, we’ll be releasing a selection of our own images from recent festivals under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence.

This means anyone can use the photos on this page, for free, for any reason, on the basis that:

  • You credit the image to SustainableDaysOut wherever used and include a link to this page
  • You state the image has been used under a ‘CC BY 4.0‘ licence and include a link to the licence terms

This applies to the images below, on this page only and not to any other content on this website.

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Categories
Forests

Nercwys Forest

Nercwys Forest, or Coed Nercwys in Welsh, is a large conifer woodland in the hills above Mold, with historical remains, a dried lake and tons of wildlife throughout X miles of footpaths – including some fantastic circular trails.

History

Historically a heather moorland, a conifer forest was planted at Nercwys in 1965 as part of the post-war effort to become self-sufficient in timber as a nation. Since then, much work has gone into improving the forest for wildlife by creating more varied habitats within the plantation.

Patches of woodland have been cleared and thinned to create more grassy areas, attracting ground-nesting birds, flowers and butterflies.

The forest also features the remains of a Bronze Age Cairn along with remnants of Victorian industrial lead mining.

Walks

The main circular walk takes around an hour uninterrupted, though you can make this slightly shorter by using the main track through the middle of the forest for half of your journey.

Nercwys Forest main track
Looking down the main track towards the north gate

The main track, shown above, runs from the north to south gates in a relatively straight line and is maintained to a standard such that logging vehicles can use it.

The circular trail is often using for mountain biking or horse riding, though is mostly used by walkers. There’s usually some muddy bits, but it’s generally a pretty good standard throughout and you can usually get away without wearing boots (although you should if you’ve got them!).

Other rights of way and unofficial paths exist through the forest, though take care, as they often become overgrown and impassable in places, and it’s easy to become lost or disorientated.

Mountain Biking

Nercwys Forest offers multiple mountain biking routes, though all are shared spaces with walkers and animals, so be vigilant.

The main circular trail has been rated ‘green’ or easy, so should be suitable for beginner cyclists and most people in good health, without any particularly steep climbs or challenging terrain.

Llyn Ochin

Llyn Ochin was once a small lake and is now a small upland blanket bog, with an occasional little pool of open water in the middle.

This marshy area is home to newts, dragonflies and cotton grass. It’s found just off the main circular path, near the south-west corner. A signed detour runs parallel to the path for a short distance, along the shores of the old lake, before rejoining the main path.

Bryn Alyn Link

One popular walk begins in the north car park and runs through Nercwys Forest before crossing open farmland to the west to reach the limestone pavement at Bryn Alyn.

Getting to Nercwys Forest

Can you get there on public transport?

The number 2 bus from Mold to Ruthin stop at Pant Du Quarry is the closest you’ll get to Nercwys Forest on public transport, which still leaves you just over a mile from the forest, around a twenty-minute walk.

Nestled in the Clwydian Range hills, the forest is surrounded by serene countryside, with great potential for planning a walking route that begins on public transport in the morning then works back towards Mold through the day. But for shorter walks around the forest, you’ll probably want to access the place by car.

Car parking

Nercwys has a free car park at the main north gate, plus a smaller area with room for a couple of cars off the lane at the south gate. There’s usually loads of room, except for the sunniest of weekends in the summer, but even then you’ll find room to squeeze in along the lanes nearby.

Facilities

Nercwys has a couple of benches dotted around along with a bin and some maps and signage by the main north entrance.

There are no toilets and no lighting.

Other info

Natural Resources Wales
Nercwys Forest Page
Regional walks leaflet (pdf)