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 17 October 2015

A Short Week in Wales – Wednesday

Y Golfa (SJ182071)

Vaguely coming to and looking at my watch at 0620 I was pleased to have woken early, as it meant that I could text Mick before he set out for work, so I made an effort to wake up properly and groped for my phone, only then to remember that I had no signal. I made do with sending an email via the BT hotspot, and in so doing came to realise that it was jolly well parky! A quick peek out the window at a very frosty world had me decide not to capitalise on the early hour, but rather to snuggle down under the duvet until the sun had risen enough to hit at least one of Colin’s windows.

Eventually I did make a move, in the direction of Welshpool, just before where I deposited Colin in a layby at Sylfaen station (on the Welshpool and Llanfair Light Railway) to head up Y Golfa.

I had good intentions of following Rights of Way the whole way, but when I got into the first field (and I was on the path at that point, even though the recorded track shown below suggests I was a distance out) I couldn’t see a way out of the field in the direction taken by the footpath, but I could see a gate further to the east. Knowing that the farmer’s eyes were upon me, I strode with purpose and like I knew where I was going, hopped over his gate* (yes, at the hinge end!) and to my relief found a good trodden line through the bracken from there all the way up to the golf course. So, that was a corner nicely cut!


I would have taken a slightly more direct line across the golf course had it been deserted, but the presence of a man on a mower, tending the greens, had me make some pretence of following the lines on the map*.


Look carefully and you’ll see a man on a mower


Oooh, is that my next hill over there?

I did follow the Rights of Way on the way back off the golf course, initially Glyndwr’s Way, then a footpath, at least until the footpath started heading down the middle of a fairway, whereupon I decided that following the perimeter would be acceptable. Then I trespassed back down my ascent route, once again striding across the farmer’s field with purpose as he was still within view, in his yard.

With the outing having only come in at 1.8 miles, with 600’ of up, there was plenty of time left in the day to go and tackle my final hill of the trip. However, I still had a day and a half at my disposal, so instead the afternoon was spent beside the Montgomery Canal, mainly reading a book, but with a couple of hours spent ambling along the canal, where autumn was fully in evidence with fallen leaves littering the water and the towpath:



My chosen parking place for Wednesday night turned out not to be as ideal as I’d hoped, albeit (as is usually the case) mainly due to an overactive imagination. There was a surprising amount of coming and going to the nearby houses, with the visitors using ‘my’ car park as a turning circle (as I left on Thursday morning I realised that I would have been less surprised by the amount of coming and going if I’d appreciated earlier that what I thought was a pair of semis was actually a terrace of four). Couldn’t complain about the amenities, though; I had a phone signal and a BT wifi hotspot all from the comfort of my sofa/bed.

(*Post Blog Note: If I’d had a 1:25k map to hand at the time, I would have known that once I was out of that first field, I was on Access Land, and thus I could have wandered across the golf course to my heart’s content.)

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