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]

Saturday, 20 September 2014

WCP: Tywyn to Dyffryn Ardudwy


Friday 19 September 2014 (0740-1725)

Distance: 23.4 miles; Ascent: 2500’

Weather: cloudy morning, sunny intervals later. No rain :-)

Number of offensive plants which attacked my bare legs: many


Today wasn’t such a good day, perhaps because there were too many miles on hard/flat surfaces for my liking. It’s all comparative though; the weather was good and most of the surroundings superb.

I’m not sure why the Coast Path has been re-routed onto a road just outside of Tywyn, and perhaps I should have tried the old route (which is a public footpath), but I figured there probably was a reason and so trod the tarmac where, during the middle miles along its length, the lure of so many ripe blackberries slowed me down.

A couple of cross-country sections did ensue, and just before Llwyngwril I decided to take a bit of a short-cut so as to trade a section of lane for a shorter section of main road. That short-cut did make for a long delay (Mr Frodo) as first I encountered an angry farmer who was not at all happy to find me on his land (my GPS track has since proven that I was, in fact, slap bang on the right of way) and then I discovered (when I had got out of his sight and cut back down to where I wanted to be) that there is no evidence of the right of way on the ground. My already scratched-to-pieces legs gained even more streaks of blood.

Second breakfast was had with Mick in Llwyngwril before I packed him off for the circuitous drive around to Barmouth. I would also have had some circuitousness, as at this point the official Coast Path route meanders around a bit in some lumpy terrain and goes via the Blue Lake before dropping down to Fairbourne. Lopping off a couple of miles, I took the route I would have selected if I’d been plotting from scratch, further justifying my decision on the basis that I’ve walked the omitted hillside sufficient times in the past not to feel the need to walk it again.

Along Fairbourne beach, along the sea defence and over the railway bridge saw me into Barmouth, where Mick joined me for a detour up Dinas Oleu to visit my parents’ tree. It was at the tree that I knelt down, trapping a mature stinging nettle very firmly between the back of my thigh and the back of my calf. Ouch!

Back down at sea level an ice cream (from the very ice cream kiosk where I worked for seven years through my teens) fortified me enough to make me declare that I was going to walk another couple of miles.

That couple of miles turned into 7.5 (some of which was due to the selected campsite not being where I thought it was), rather too many of which were along the A496. I did follow the beach for as far as I could out of Barmouth, but once forced inland there is, for a distance, a lack of rights of way to get one back onto the sand. I finished the day rather fatigued, making me declare that I’m having a short(er) one tomorrow!

(Today’s photo is looking up the Afon Dysynni just north of Tywyn, taken from part way across the shiny, new pedestrian bridge)


  1. Enjoying the account very much - may the fine weather continue for you.
    Too late for you but you can get round the point N of Barmouth on a ledge beneath the top of the concrete wall on the seaward side of the railway and thence on the beautiful beach all the way up to Shell Island...................Fred

    1. I wish I'd known about that ledge a day earlier! I would certainly have gone an explored it. Next time I'm in the area, I'll go and take a look.

      Glad you're enjoying and I share your hope of continued fine weather :-)