Day 234 Afon Mawdach to Afon Dyfri

Wednesday 25 November 2015

Barmouth to Aberdovey

15 miles (+ train)

Dovey Inn

It took me 8 hours to get back to Barmouth yesterday; not that I minded as these days travelling is much more relaxing when one has time. I stayed in the same guest house as my last night here, Môr Wyn. I asked Trevor if the storms had hit and he said a concrete slipway had been smashed and a huge tree had blown down. He reckoned it had been the windiest he’d experienced since he moved to Barmouth 10 years ago. I’m glad I hadn’t walked through that.  

Barmouth dolphins overlooking the Afon Mawdach
 It wasn’t raining when I left but within 15 minutes I was fully suited up and getting soaked. The toll booth for pedestrians using the railway bridge to cross the Afon Mawdach was closed so I didn’t have to pay 30p to get across.  

Following the bridge into the gloom
The wooden slatted bridge was very slippery. Despite the heavy rain I was able to enjoy the views back to Barmouth. From the estuary the town looks small and neat, with slate houses tucked into the hillside.  

Looking back on Barmouth from the bridge across the Afon Mawdach
A lovely tower on the edge of Barmouth juts out into the river
 On the South side of the Afon Mawdach, Fairbourne sticks out further into the estuary than Barmouth. It looks like a bungalow town with a small gauge railway and is actually below sea level, protected by a large sea wall. I passed the RAF outdoor adventure centre – been there a couple of times before.  

Looking up the River Mawdach
From Fairbourne the coast path climbed up the hill and I had a great vista of the head of the Mawdach valley and could even see the Lleyn Peninsula when the clouds parted.  

looking down on Fairbourne and across the river to Barmouth
 Belts of rain kept coming, interspersed by mizzle. The ground was sodden and the views intermittent, but there were vivid colours and a couple of rainbows as compensation. There was also peace and tranquility; just me and hundreds of sheep.   

Wet weather approaching Barmouth
a rainbow over Barmouth
an even brighter rainbow over the sea
 After about 3 miles I dropped off the top of the hill into Llwyngwril.  

looking down on Llwyngwril
 Around here, all the settlements at the base of a hill have crystal clear, shallow rivers running through them. It looked like this village had its own graffiti knitter as Humpty Dumpty was climbing over the bridge.  

Is that a seagull on your head Humpty?
 The war memorial was also decorated with scores of knitted poppies.   

knitted poppies at the Llwyngwril war memorial
 Leaving Llwyngwril the path climbed up a hill again. I got a glimpse of the entrance to the Afon Dyfi through the gloom before I dropped down a bit to skirt around a hill that once held a fort on top.  

looking ahead to the mouth of the Afon Dyfi
 Here the route became a bit more difficult to follow as I had to climb over and around 3 felled trees blocking the narrow path.  

Sun over Barmouth
 Eventually I made it to a disused quarry and dropped down onto the road by the broad water, a large shallow bulge of the Afon Dysynni. Aberdovey was too far so I headed for Tonfanau train station (in the middle of nowhere, no settlement of any kind nearby). I caught the train through Tywyn and on to Aberdovey.  

Aberdovey sea front
 Aberdovey/Aberdyfi is right on the corner of the entrance to the River Dovey/Afon Dyfi. It looks like a nice little town and I was staying at the Dovey Inn, “the heart of the town”. My room overlooked the estuary and I was amused to see a bunch of kids paddling a raft they had clearly made as part of a military-style team building exercise (done that before!). It was 4.20pm and nearly dark! 

Rafting in the harbour
 It was a quiet evening in the pub and an early night.   


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