Today, thanks to The Carpenter, I started from the teashop by the canal on the Darran
and headed up to Pegwn y Bwlch, meeting a man who was born in Madryn street in Crosskeys (about 87 years ago), lived in New Zealand for most of his life, and now lives opposite where he was born! Then I accompanied three generations of one family up Twmbarlwm. (mother, daughters and granddaughter).
I'd come this way because I dowsed the map for the ponies...why hadn't I thought of that earlier! (probably wouldn't have been balanced enough to do it earlier ) They were here- relief! They are elusive, and do move about a lot...and there is a lot of ground- and trees- they can disappear into!!
Good to be welcomed
He is shaping up
No wonder pony feet are difficult to draw...they are always in the undergrowth!!
Twenty years or so ago this was not much more than six feet wide.
Looking back towards Cardiff
I met another walker and dog, had another nice talk, but this meant time was slipping by. I'd seen possibly another three ponies in the distance, ones that always kept together, but I wasn't going across that way now.
I cut down the path by the old quarry workings, you can see the different colour growth on them.
and down paths where I'd been shown the way before, where we'd smelt the reek of fox in the beechwoods. I came out on the Forest Drive by the first car park and barbecue site, where there is a chainsaw sculpture
Then tarmac and verge for a while
The stream which is fed from the North facing slope of the valley has just sunlight flowing. Some of the water does end up underground in the old pit workings, I was told and it will take two rainy days to get it flowing again.
That which is fed from the South facing slopes still runs, but is reduced due to low rainfall.
The old road from Nantcarn down towards Cwmcarn, with the undergrowth gradually encroaching across its path.
It was a fine day for walking, not too warm and with a light breeze.