The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Sunday, 21 September 2014

WCP: Penrhyndeudraeth to Llanbedrog

Sunday 21 September 2014 (0725-1550)

Distance: 24.3 miles

Ascent: not enough to bother counting

Weather: Glorious!

There was a nip in the air this morning, which (combined with a weather forecast telling me it was going to be much cooler than of late) caused me to have a last minute switch of clothes from shorts and t-shirt to trousers and long sleeves. That was a mistake and the day turned out to be every bit as warm as at the start of the week, but having not realised that until about an hour into the day, I had to wait until lunchtime to put it right.

I had already called for support once, just fifteen minutes into my day when my shoes, which I’ve worn in perfect comfort for the last 250 miles, reverted to their previous grossly-uncomfortable ways. Mick duly delivered different shoes to me, although that didn’t go entirely smoothly, as he didn’t know that there is a low-lying path below the inland side of the causeway that runs to the east of Porthmadog, and I didn’t know that there was a high-level path running on the other side, and thus we passed each other unseen...

Because Mick was on the sea-ward side, he missed the full glory of this view, which was just a taster of how fantastic this day was going to be:


We both got to see this one though:


If Mick hadn’t come on a shoe-swapping mercy mission, he wouldn’t (after leaving me) have then become involved in the rescue of three stray dogs which had, apparently, been dumped in Porthmadog town centre. What is it with us and stray dogs in Wales this year?! 

Meanwhile, I continued through picturesque Borth-y-Gest and onto the first of many lovely beaches, all with views of mountains in one direction or another.


Black Rock sands is an enormous area of sand, on which many cars had apparently enjoyed making hand-brake turns very recently. It was reasonably quiet from a traffic point of view this morning, but there were lots of people out and about, in common with most of today’s beach areas. The firm surface there made for fast and easy walking and, having walked its length, a rare pull up a hill (and back down the other side) saw me soon striding towards Cricieth, which is an attractive place when approached from the east, as I did.


Having completed his dog-rescuing duties in Porthmadog, and resolved our dwindling supply of groceries, Mick caught up with me as the route takes to the main road for a couple of miles between Cricieth and Pwllheli. After lunch and a change back into summer garb, I then had an afternoon of mainly beach walking. A large martial arts tournament/meet was in progress on one bit of beach, just outside of Pwllheli; I fear that I accidentally got myself in some of the spectator’s photos and videos.

I’m pretty sure that I haven’t been to Pwllheli before, and it didn’t grab me as a place I wanted to explore further, so I just shuffled on through, meeting Mick as I walked three sides of the huge harbour.

Once of the big benefits of Mick walking back to meet me at various points of the days is that he’s already recce’d the route, so, for example, this afternoon he was able to lead me around a bit of headland which didn’t look passable from a distance. If I’d been alone, I would have walked a longer road route.


After a couple of days involving stretches of path that were okay, but not deserving of superlatives, today was back to walking perfection (helped, of course, by the gorgeous weather). Even the section of main road paled into insignificance when the day was viewed as a whole.

1 comment:

  1. views indeed - other than the last one, are you trying to tell us that you haven't simply got out your portable scanner and simply scanned in the best touristy postcards - quite amazing - the lower late summer/early autumn sun gives these a lovely limpid light :
    bouyed up by prospects such as these, I bet you hardly noticed the miles and sand in your shoes - lucky indeed for you both!