I’ve had such a fun weekend hiking around Clwydog Dam and lake in Llandiloes with my friends and my favourite yellow Labrador, Bella, (she features a lot in this post).
I love hiking! I’ve not done too much of it mainly because I’ve been training on my mountain bike for Coast to Coast, (which is in 2 weeks) but it’s a good to vary it up with different forms of exercise. Plus, I’ve just found out that I’ll be hiking up Ben Nevis in September for charity so I’m in need of many more hiking adventures!
The Fam Hike
It’s always advisable to set off early when you’re going for hikes. Mainly because you don’t know how long you’ll be up there and the weather can be quite variable. However after we’d got all of our stuff together, we didn’t get out till around 2 pm. We bundled an excited Bella in the back of the truck and we set off to stop at Clywydog Dam first.
As you can see, it’s pretty dramatic. This time they were letting water through so it was quite noisy! It didn’t bother me because I LOVE the sound of water. A perfect stop for some photos. It’s truly lovely here and there’s a cafe where you can have light refreshments. It’s a bit hit and miss on catching it when it’s actually open so do bring your own refreshments. You’re able to walk around the lake (just behind the dam) and catch Canadian Geese, Red Kites and Buzzards – it’s a haven for wildlife.
Our next stop was the main car park of Clwydog Dam, The Fam route is quite easy to miss mainly because the path is hidden and unless you’ve got walking boots on, you may be put off by the deep puddles. If you do brave it, it’s worth it. You’ll be greeted by a sign that has a horseshoe on it, a little stream and a rusty gate to the left of you. There’s a stone wall that guides you up and which I loved mainly because of the craftsmanship. This is probably the only flat part of the hike and the rest of it has a moderate incline.
The nice thing about The Fam path is that it’s clearly marked out with a smooth snaking grass path, which snakes up all the way to the top. I’d say you need an OK level of fitness!
You’ll come to yet another rusty gate that’s falling over and you’ve to climb this. It’s low so don’t worry. But before you do, stop and take a look below you. You get an amazing view of the lake, the surrounding lush valley and there are interesting breeds of sheep around. We saw two Red Kites swooping around in the sky, obviously looking for their next meal…
I love this tree, below, mainly because it looked at home, standing there alone, shaped by at times ferocious winds. It seems to frame the landscape perfectly.
It’s a fresh as you can get up here so take a big deep breath because you’ll need it as the hike continues!
The weather for us that day was OK, it was grey to start with but as we reached the peak of the mountain, the sun put his hat on. I was thrilled really because the 360 panoramic view around is just spectacular and it’s much better with a golden glint.
We all stopped for photos and the others founds rocks to rest on. We got Bella to play supermodel as she ran through the golden grass posing for her pictures.
Bella and I both carried on and walked to the far side of the hill. When I’ve climbed something, I think it’s only natural to explore most of it. We both loved it, with the wind in our hair / fur and panting like idiots because we’d forgotten water(totally irresponsible).
We sat and admired and admired some more.
The walk back down was quicker mainly because we cut through and braved the thick prickly heather so we could hike back down vertically. I always find going down a challenge as I’m not sturdy on my feet but I’ve learnt a few tricks which I’ll be sharing in a post soon.
Once back down, Bella made way to the babbling brook for a drink and we rested on the nearby picnic benches. I wandered off for a quick look at Clywdog lake and admired the stone walls. I’ve a thing for stone it seems. Eventually, we all drove home for a food filled evening. Hiking is definitely good for working up an appetite!
Where have you been lately?