About Me

When? Started: 1993 Who? Started with staff and friends from U H S, Chester. Organiser: Martyn Harris We walk every Wednesday and Saturdays, New Years day and May Day. How many walk? Walks take place as long as there are at least 2 wanting to walk on that day. More walk on a Wednesday than on a Saturday. Most ever: 29. Numbers walking: 2-12, a mid-week and 3-4 on Saturday. Where do we walk? Saturday: Anywhere in North and Mid-Wales, Peak District, Shropshire and the Long Mynd and as far North as the Trough of Bowland. Thursday: Anywhere within about 40 miles of Chester. Type of walk: Distance: 6 – 14 miles. Climb: up to 4000’ (but usually very much less!). Those involved in 2017:- Martyn Harris, Fran Murphy, Sue and Michel Pelissier, Annie Hammond, Sue and Dave Pearson, Mike Dodd, David and Anne Savage, Celia de Mengle, Wendy and Ian Peers, Roger and Margaret Smith, Tim and Carol Dwyer, Paul Collinson, Phil Marsland, Sylvia and Dave Jenkins, Sheila McNee, Ed Meads, Elaine and John Greenhalgh, Jim McCabe, Mal Pulford., Joyce Russell

Friday, 31 October 2008

Around Llandyrnog 30th October 2008

Our first good view of Moel Arthur from the Vale of Clwyd. The Clwydian Hills from Just outside Llandyrnog.
Crossing one of the many fields.
Walk stats:Martyn only: Distance:7.4 miles; Climb:583'.
Time:3 hours 40 minutes;Walking average:2.4 m.p.h.;Overall walk average:2.0 m.p.h.
The rest of the group: Distance:!2.4 miles; Climb:1354'.
Time:5 hours 49 minutes;Walking average:2.5 m.p.h.;Overall walk average:2.1 m.p.h.
Group: (Martyn)Richard, Roger, Gordon, Annie H., Sylvia and Dave J.
Weather in the morning was quite good, cold but dry. The Clwydians looked magnificent clothed in a covering of snow. We didn't quite make the snow line but, but certainly added to the beauty of the views to the east and the west as we walked largely in the Vale of Clwyd. Conditions underfoot could at best be described as wet and at times very muddy. Several ancient churches were on the route, but alas we didn't get the chance to see inside any of them!
Having completed the main walk Martyn decided it was time to take the comfort of the car as the rest of the group set off in search of St. Cynhafal in what turned out to be heavier and heavier rain! As they arrived back at the car I know who made the right choice!
Birds seen and heard today included: Buzzard, Herring gull, Robin, Carrion crow, Magpie, Starling, Blue tit, Blackbird, Chaffinch, Fieldfare, Woodpigeon, Collared dove, House sparrow and possibly Redwing and Bullfinch.
Only Richard missed out on a visit to the Golden Lion, Llandyrnog with its real fire and very drinkable but rather on the cool side Facer's DBH. Thankfully this hostelry opened at 4-00 p.m, an hour later than the Good Beer Guide, but just right for us!

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Dates and Walks October 2008

Updated on 27th September 2008
Walk location for Thursday 30th has been changed again. The trip to the Lleyn Peninsular has been cancelled. The Pearsons are coming home early and won't be able to meet us. No doubt we will have other opportunities to visit Yr Eifle and Tre'r Ceiri Hill Fort in 2009.
Thursday 2nd October 2008
Llantysilio Mountain
Distance:8 miles; Climb:2000'.
Start: Car parking area opposite the Panderosa cafe on the Horsheshoe Pass. Grid ref:SJ193481. Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
This is a walk that we have done many times before both in winter and summer, but I can't remember doing it in autumn before. This is one of my favourite walks in the Llangollen area. This route is the one found in Dave Berry's book "Walking Around Llangollen and the Dee Valley". This walk is as near as you will get to a ridge walk in this rolling hill area of the Llantysilio Mountains. On good days the views in all directions can be superb.
After walk drinks will probably be at the Crown Inn, Llandegla.
Saturday 4th October 2008
The Llyn Padarn Circuit and the Powdwr Oil Walk.
Distance:9-10 miles; Climb:1400'.
Start:Lakeside Car Park (pay and Display) close to Llanberis. Grid ref:SH579065.
Leave Chester 8-00 a.m.
This walk involves two walks taken from Dave Salter and Dave Worrall's book "New Walks in Gwynedd from Mountain Tops to Valley Floors". One walk is described as a low level walk that brings views of Snowdon's northern cwms, Moel Elio, the big dipper ridge and the Dinorwig quarries. The second walk is described as a gentle and scenic walk that has a tragic note to it, a reference to an explosion that took several lives in Cwm y Glo.
after walk drinks will probably be at the Britannia Inn, Pentre Halkyn.
Thursday 9th October 2008
Around Aled Isaf
Distance:8-9 miles; Climb:1500'.
Start:Off road parking close to the dam at the eastern end of Aled Reservoir . Grid ref:SH916579 Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
Now that we know the way across this open moorland, this has become one of my favourite walks. The terrain can be quite boggy and despite the absence of paths on the ground, there is something special about trekking across the wild moorland that is Hiraethog. The walk is taken from Dave Berry's book " Walks Around Hiraethog Moors and Lakes".
After walk drinks will probably be at the Britannia Inn, Pentre Halkyn.
Saturday 11th October 2008
Around Altwen, Cwm Gyrach, the Druids Circle and Foel Lus.
Distance:10-11 mile; Climb:2000+'.
Start: Car parking area at the top of the Sychnant Pass. Grid ref:SH750770.
Leave Chester 8-00 a.m.
This walk involves another two walks taken from Dave Berry's book "Walks on the North wales Coast". One walk is a new walks to us, although some have us have done the Foel Lus part of the walk and the walk to the Druids Circle. This area is always good to walk in giving fine views with little effort expended. The Jubilee walk around Foel Lus will be a real treat for anyone that has not done it before. This high well maintained footpath gives fantastic views to the coast and Penmaenmawr.
After walk drinks will probably be at the Britannia Inn, Pentre Halkyn.
Thursday 16th October 2008
Foel Fennli and Moel Fammau.
Distance:11 miles; Climb:1700'.
Start: Car park adjacent to to the toilet block on the road from Llanferris to Bwlch Penbarra. It is the car park that you pay £1 on entry and is the car park that Richard used on the day we found someone's purse.Grid ref:SJ1736122.
Leave Chester 9-0 a.m.
This is another walk that we have done several times, but it is always good to return to our local patch. At least mid-week shouldn't too busy around Moel Fammau summit, but if everything goes to form it is very likely to be windy!
After walk drinks will probably be at the Gold Cape on Wrexham Road, Mold. If not the Glasfryn will be on offer.
Saturday 18th October 2008
Thurstaston to Hoylake.
Distance:13 miles; Climb:530'.
Start: Thursaston Country Park car park. Grid ref:SJ239834
Leave Chester 8-30 a.m.
This seemed to be an appropriate walk to do on the day we all meet at Fran and Tito's in the evening to reminisce on our Italy adventure. This last time we did this walk was that memorable occasion when we took lunch on Red Rock and had all sorts of fancy goodies courtesy of Fran and M & S. Much of the walk, tide permitting is along the shore, so bring along binoculars if you can. High tide is at 14-12 and is 30.8' (9.7m).
After walk drinks will probably be at the Dee View, Heswall.
Thursday 23rd October 2008
Moel y Gaer, Moel Fammau and the western Fringes.
Distance: 10-11 miles;Climb:2000+'.
Start: Car park at the top of Bwlch Penbarra (Pay and Display). Grid ref: Sj162606
Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
This walk combines two walks from Dave Berry'a book " Walks Around the Clwydian Hills". One walk he describes as anexhilarating walk exploring part of the Moel Fammau Country Park and include the main ridge over Moel Llys-y-coed and Moel Dywyll. The other walk provides a fascinating exploration of the little known western flanks of the Clwydians.
After walk drinks will probably be at the Gold Cape on Wrexham Road, Mold. If not the Glasfryn will be on offer.
Saturday 25th October 2008
Longstone Edge and Water-cum-Jolly Dale.
Distance:10-11 miles; Climb:1200'.
Start: Monsal Head Car Park (Pay and Display). Grid ref: SK186715.
Leave Chester 8-00 a.m.
This is the first of several winter walks in the Peak District.
These walks are both taken from Mark Richard's book "Walks in the White Peak - North Dales".
He describes the outing to Longstone Edge as a most entertaining proposition. We have visited Water cum - Jolly - Dale many times, and most of us fully aware of the delights of this valley.
After walk drinks will probably be at the Monsal Head Hotel and if we are lucky Hartington Bitter will be on offer.
Thursday 30th October 2008
In Search of St. Cynhafal and part of St. Cwyfan's Trail.
Distance:10 -12 miles; Climb:2000'.
Start: Roadside parking in Nant Glyd, Llandyrnog. Grid ref:SJ109651.
Llandyrnog is on the B5429 road from Llanbedre D.C. to Bodfari. To get to Nant Glyd, in the centre of Llandyrnog turn towards Llangynhafal (Gladstone Terrace) then right into Nant Glyd, which offers good roadside parking.
Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
This walk uses two walks from Dave Berry's book "Walks in the Vale Of Clwyd. He describes the first walk as being a delightful 6.5 mile walk, but when we last did it came to 7.6 miles on the GPS. This walk follows riverside and field paths as wll as a delightful old bridleway before visiting the lovely remote 15th century church of St. Cynhafal.
If time allows the second walk of 6 miles is described as a walk visiting the attracrive countryside north of Llandyrnog and visits the smallest medieval church in the Vale. In the graveyard there is the grave of a man that lived in three centuries. This walk can be shortened to 4.5 miles if need be.
The location of after walk drinks (if any) can be decided on the day but the Britannia Inn at Pentre Halkyn could still be the best choice.

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Longstone Edge 25th October 2008

One of the delightful hidden valleys on the way to Longstone Edge.

The view in to Coombs Dale fro the start of the "precarious narrow trod".
Longstone Edge - the bit we walked along.
Walk stats: Distance:8.7 miles; Climb:1411'.
Time: 4 hours 22 minutes; Walking average: 2.5 m.p.h.;Overall walk average:2.1 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Richard, Celia and Dave J.
Much to our surprise this walk was completed in the dry with very little wind. The rain only caught up with us for the last ten minutes or so of the walk.
We started the walk at the Monsal Head rather than the described routes suggestion of Greater Longstone. The Monsal Trail was the way we chose on the outward journey. This was a delightful path with the sun shining through the trees autumn leaves giving a blaze of reds and oranges.
The route description presented one or two challenges and we didn't quite get it right all of the time. A good reason for doing this walk again, especially since we missed viewing "Deep Rake"! However the route we did take was also good and has a good chance of becoming the way of choice should we do it a third time.
This walk did give a feel about it of walking along a ridge, giving good views into the valleys below and the entrance into Coombs Dale along the "precarious narrow trod" was quite dramatic!
Birds seen or heard today included: Carrion crow, Magpie, Jackdaw, Raven, Robin, Mistle thrush, Dunnock, House sparrow, Blue tit, Long-tailed tit, Buzzard and Kestrel.
The Monsal Head Hotel was so busy that we were forced to retreat to our usual hostelry at Leek. Most of us enjoyed Hartington Bitter in the characterful Wilkes Head.
Overall a good day in the Peak district, it was good to be back in this part of the woods again!

Friday, 24 October 2008

Moel Famau and its Western Fringes 23rd October 2008

Settting off towards Moel y Gaer
The delightful little visited side valley on the southern flanks of Moel y Gaer.
On the Western Fringes of Moel famau.
Walk stats: Distance: 9.7 miles; limb:3374'.
Time:4 hours 54 minutes; Walking average:2.5 m.p.h.;Overall walk average:2.1 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Roger, Richard, Gordon, Anne H., Celia, Tim, Sylvia and Dave J.
The forecast wasn't good and we were all anticipating rain for most of the walk. Fortunately this didn't materialise and we only got a few spots of rain just as we were arriving back at the car. The wind however was another matter, it was so windy that it blew the boot lid down catching Roger on the head giving him a cut that bled quite profusely for some time. Manfuly he set off with the rest of the group, but soon realised that it would be wiser to go home. "Nurse" Richard obliged and caught up with the rest of the group at lunch.
This was quite an interesting route using some paths on the western flanks that we had never used before, adding to our footpath knowledge of our local patch.
After lunch we followed the Offa's Dyke path over Moel Llys-y-Coed, Moel Dywyll and Moel Famau. It was here that the gale force wind challenged us most and frequent forced side-steps were the order of the day.
Birds seen or heard today included: Raven, Carrion crow, Magpie, Jay, Kestrel, Fieldfare, Wren, Starling, Redwing and a flock of finches.
Enjoyable Cwrw Eryri were quaffed at the Glasfryn, but Richard decided not to join us.
Thankfully Roger felt much better when I contacted him later in the day.

Sunday, 19 October 2008

Around Caldy and West Kirby 18th October 2008

The view from Red Rocks towards the lighthouse at Talacre.
Walk stats: Distance: 12.6 miles; Climb:674'.
Time: 5 hours 7 minutes; Walking average: 2.9 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:2.4 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Roger, Sylvia and Dave J.
What a gloroius day walking it proved to be. Wonderful sunshine almost from the start to the end. Timing of the walk was a little out o take full advantage of the high tide pushing the wading birds closer to the shore. Nevertheles we did enjoy an early lunch (11-45 a.m.) sitting at Red Rocks watching the incoming stide getting closer. The views across the estuary towards the Great Orme were a joy to behold. We had a little detour to Gilroy Nature Reserve, but even this only added a Mallard and a farm yard type duck to our list.
Brids seen or hearde today included: Coot, Moorhen, Wren, Chaffinch, Housesparrow, Common gull, Herring gull, Black-headed gull, Curlew, Oystercatcher, Shellduck, Redshank, Starling, Woodpigeon, Magpie, Kestrel, Cormorant, Carrion crow and Blackbird.
Enjoyable drinks were quaffed at the Dee View in Heswall with the added bonus that Liverpool's home match against Wigan was being shown live!

Thursday, 16 October 2008

Foel Fenlli and Moel Famau 16th October 2008

Setting off early on the walk.
The Vale of Clwyd from the ramparts of Foel Fenlli.

Heading for the Jubilee tower on Moel Famau.
Walk stats: Distance:8.9 miles; Climb:20078'.
Time 4 hours 10 minutes; Walking average:2.5m.p.h.;Overall walk average:2.1 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Roger, Tim, Annie H., Sue and Michel, Sylvia and Dave J., and Gordon McNee.
The forecast for showers and temperatures as low as 6 Celsius meant that we were all back to winter gear. An early heavy shower resulted in us all setting off in waterproofs tops and bottoms. Although being accompanied by a cold north-westerly wind, the rain didn't persist and apart from one other shower just before lunch we were blessed with fine sunny walking conditions. Only Dave J., Sylvia and Roger climbed to the top of Foel Fenlli while the rest of us chose the delightful Offa's Dyke path that contoures alongside one of the hill fort ramparts, giving good views towards Ruthin and the Vale of Clwyd below.

The summit of Moel Famau was windy as usual, but we manage to shelter on the east side for a lunch stop in the sun. We still got gusts of wind that delighted in wisking away Michel's lunch wrappings. Not to be labelled a "litter lout" Michel entertained us with his "hunting skills" to recapture the escaped items!
The return route back to the car park was accomplished quicker than we expected and we were forced to head for the Glasfryn where we were enjoying Cwrw Eryri before 2-30 p.m.
Birds seen or heard today included:Fieldfare, Carrion crow, Wren, Meadow pipit, Chaffinch and Kestrel.
It was good to see Gordon joining the walk for the first time after an enforced absence due to a short three month work contract that lasted well over a year!

Sunday, 12 October 2008

Around Alltwen, Cwm Gyrach and Foel Lus 11th October 2008

Welsh Mountain Ponies on the Hills behind Penmaenmawr.
On the summit of Alltwen.
Looking across towards Cefn Coch.
Celia's choice of lunch spot - the Druids' Circle..

Walk stats: Distance:10.3 miles; Climb:2549'.
Time: 5 hours 47 minutes; Walking average:2.3 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:1.8 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Richard, Roger, Celia, Dave J., Mike D., Sue and Michel.

Weather conditions were warm and humid with a hint of dampness accompanying us for most of the day. The low lying cloud denied us of the many magnificent views that we should have seen on this potentially wonderful walk. We did get glimpses of Puffin Island and across the sea to Anglesey, and as we left the Stone Circle it lifted to reveal what seemed like a different world.
On this walk we even saw a fisherman catching a good sized trout! Most of us had lunch two thirds of the way up Cwm Gyrach, but a second lunch was taken at the Druids' stone circle!
Overall this was a walk that demanded to be repeated on a fine summer day.
Birds seen or heard included: Robin, Red grouse, Carrion crow, Jackdaw, Raven, Stonechat, Wren, Meadow pipit, Long-tailed tit, Blue tit and Jay.

As usual fine pints of J. W. Lees biter were sampled by most of us at the Britannia Inn at Pentre Halkyn.

Friday, 10 October 2008

Around Aled Isaf 9th October 2008

At last we've found the easy way across the moors at the start of the walk.
It's not like this in the Galapagos!
At last we're on a path!
Rhaeadr y Bedd on the Ceunant with Aled Isaf Reservoir above.
Walk stats: Distance:9.4 m.p.h.; Climb:1952'.
Time:4 hours 7 minutes; Walking average:2.7 m.p.h.;Overall walk average: 2.3 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Richard, Roger, Tim, Celia, Sylvia and Dave J.
Both cars arrived about 45 minutes late to the start point having been delayed by traffic accidents on both the A55 and the Mold to Denbigh Roads, but the walk was done a good pace and we finished around our normal finishing time of 3-00 p.m.
This wonderful romp across the wild Hiraethog Moors was done in almost perfect walking conditions, dry and sunny with a cooling breeze that time gusted strongly. Nevertheless no-one got wet feet, that is an achievement in itself when crossing this boggy terrain! The distant views were good, although we weren't sure which Snowdonia peaks we were looking at.
Even though Fran wasn't on the walk, she took the trouble to get sandwiches for everyone. Thanks Fran. We enjoyed them around 1-00 p.m., basking in the sun and in a spot sheltered fron the wind, it must have been the only time on the walk that the wind wasn't blasting us in some way! As a slight detour from the described walk, we used one of Clwydian Way paths that went high above the Ceunant, giving us views of the Rhaeadr y Bedd as the river tumbled on its way from Aled Isaf Reservoir.
Birds seen or heard today were few and far between, but included:Carrian crow, Raven, Kestrel, Meadow pipit and Fieldfare.
As usual we enjoyed after walk drinks at the Britaania Inn at Pentre Halkyn.

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Around Llyn Padarn and More 4th October 2008

The view towards Dolbadarn Castle.
Setting off on the lakeside path - is this the sensible thing to do?

The view from Dolbadarn Castle.
Walk stats:
Martyn only.
Distance:6.4 miles;Climb:1833'.
Time:3 hours 20 minutes; Walking average:2.9 m.p.h. Overall walk average:1.9 m.p.h.

Richard, Roger, Dave J and Sylvia.
Distance: 11.6 miles, Climb:30001.
Time:5 hours 40 minutes; Walking average:2.9 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:1.9 m.p.h.
This was a day when more sensible people would have stayed at home, but not to be deterred by the forecast of inclement weather the five of us set off on this low level walk. We started in light drizzle that hardly eased all morning. The first challenge of the day was to find access to the lakeside path and find a route to Dolbadarn Castle, the railway line blocked the way described in the route description. However we did eventually get there and climb the narrow circular stairs to what must have been the second level. Alas views today weren't that good with mist/clouds almost being down to a few hundred feet. The route from the National Slate Museum involved climbing whats seemed like an endless number of slate steps alongside impressive quarry workings. Once above the quarry it was time to descend back to the lakeside, but this time the route was a more gentle path through the woods with the final stretch on the a minor road back to the old road bridge.
It was at this point that I decided that I had had enough rain for one day and decided to return to the car while the rest of the group completed the Powdwr Oil Walk.
The return jouney along the old road and an old railway track between lagoons was quite delightful, even in the rain!
Having seen them arriving back like drowned rats I'm sure I made the right decision!
Birds seen or heard today included:Cormorant, Herring gull, Black-headed gull, Mallard, Coot, Jackdaw and Song thrush.
We arrived at the Britannia Inn at Pentre Halkyn for our usual after walk celebrations to find that we had missed meeting up with Sue and Graeme Anderson who had hoped to join us for a drink.
This walk will be put on the list again, but on a day when the delights of the low level moorland paths on the Powdwr Oil walk can be fully appeciated.

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Llantysilio Mountains 2nd October 2008

The group waiting for you know who! The path ahead to Moel Morfydd.
Walk stats: distance &.6 miles; Climb:2123'.
Time 4 hours 0 Minutes; walking average:2.3 m.p.h.;Overall walk average: 1.9 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Richard, Roger, Sue and Michel, Fran and Tito, Sylvia and Dave J.
This lovely roller coaster of a walk is always has lots to offer, today was no exception. The weather forecast wasn't good, and it wasn't long before we were all kitted out in full our winter walking wet gear. The "feels like temperature" at this time must have been close to zero! However after this biting driving rain shower lasting about half an hour the remaining day got better and better. We had good views towards the Eglywseg Mountains, Dinas Bran and after lunch the whole of the Clwydian Range came into view. This view was the one we looked at as we enjoyed lunch (sandwiches provided by Fran, some of us sampling Crayfish and and Rocket for the first time), basking in the sun at lunchtime.
Temperatures were low enough for this to have been described as a winter walk!
Birds seen or heard today included most of the Corvid family and included:Raven, Carrion crow, Jackdaw, Chough, Magpie, Wren, Meadow pipit, Robin, Red grouse, Buzzard and Kestrel.
After walk refreshments were at the Crown Inn at Llandegla. J.W. Lees bitter was in good nick and there seemed to be new tenants. Their food menu, most involving steak, tempted several members of the group to suggest that we should arrange to have a meal there after a walk!
Overall a very good day out in our local hills.