List of walks in date order, with links
Date Walk Distance
22 August 2009 Circular walk over Ysgyryd Fawr (Skirrid Fawr), near Abergavenny 5.6 km (3.5 miles)
21 August 2009 Lower Wye Valley Rambles - Ramble 6 9.8 km (6.1 miles)

I'll use this page of the log to record odd off-territory walks (that is, walks not within the area formally covered by this website) that are not part of a particular project.

21 August 2009: Lower Wye Rambles - Ramble 6

9.8 km (6.1 miles)

The Lower Wye Ramblers group of the Ramblers' Association (now rebranded 'the Ramblers') publish a very good booklet of well designed walks in the Lower Wye Valley. Jen and I wanted a late afternoon walk, and decided on Ramble 6 from the booklet, starting from Trellech (a village with an interesting history). We have done it before, but not for some time.

Generally waymarking of the route is good, often with dedicated 'Lower Wye Rambles' waymarks. However, the Lower Wye Rambles waymarks do not have direction indicators, so although they are a useful reassurance that you are on the right track, they are not always unambiguous as to forward direction.

Example of a Lower Wye Rambles waymark (in this case, for Ramble 1)

I dithered a bit about the route after having visited Harold's Stones (three standing stones), just outside Trellech, but soon found the right path.

Unfortunately, I hadn't brought my camera (so no pictures), as the morning had been intermittently wet. However, the weather improved as we walked, and the route gives some of the best views over the Back Mountains from anywhere. They looked particularly beautiful in the late afternoon light.

I'm still using the second edition of 'Lower Wye Rambles', although the third edition has now been published. The route was as described, other than a small, but not well signed, diversion at Loysey (a large house with large baking dogs and large pony paddocks). The route now goes a little way back down their drive, away from the house, before cutting across the field next to the house.

Back in Trellech, we stopped for a pint in the Lion Inn, which always has a good selection of real ales.

A good walk, with superb views in the middle.

Wood Spurge


22 August 2009: Circular walk over Ysgyryd Fawr (Skirrid Fawr or the Holy Mountain), near Abergavenny

5.6 km (3.5 miles)

The Blorenge
The Blorenge, from start of walk

Susan, Jen and I had originally intended to go for an afternoon's costal walking in South Wales. However, the M4 was crawling to a halt, so we decided divert northwards and do short walk in the hills. We had to stop in Usk to pick up a map, and it was mid afternoon before we could start walking.

Sugar Loaf
Sugar Loaf (Y Fâl)

We chose Ysgyryd Fawr simply because it was close, and looked as if it offered a worthwhile short walk with good views from the top.

Beacons Way waymark

We started from the small car park on the B4521 at the southern end of the hill. We then followed the Beacons Way through Caer Wood, where we left the main path to follow the path around the contour to the north end of the mountain. This passes through a miniature rocky valley, with good views up to the cliffs below the summit.

Cliffs below summit

[The Beacons Way is a 163km (101 mile) linear walk across the Brecon Beacons National Park.]

View north from rocky valley

From the north end of the mountain we picked up the Beacons Way again and followed in the opposite direction up to the ridge, some two or three hundred metres from the summit. The ridge is a very elegant and narrow. At the summit is a trig point made from stone, not concrete, with a National Trust name plate saying 'Skirrid Fawr'.

Trig point on summit

We returned to the car by following the Beacons Way along the ridge and back through Caer Wood.

A short but very worthwhile walk, with spectacular views, particularly of Sugar Loaf. The weather was fine, becoming overcast towards the end of the walk.

Ridge, northwardsRidge, southwards
Views along ridge, towards and away from summit

We stopped at the Clytha Arms for a pint on the way back. It's on the B4598, between Abergavenny and Raglan. Good range of real ales. Looks as if it would be a nice place to eat.

Clytha Arms
Mural in gents toilet, Clytha Arms

Hawthorne berries