I am still not sure whether I prefer a perfect Spring day or a perfect Autumn one, do you like the Spring for the promise it holds for the rest of the year or the Autumn as you may not see a better day for some months. All I know is that when Sunday dawned sunny and still I knew I had to get out and enjoy the countryside. Susie and I had a short chat as to where we should go. We both prefer the Black Mountains to the Brecon Beacons; less crowded, prettier because of the presence of more trees, and much closer to Gliffaes. We decided to approach Mynydd Llangorse by climbing the steep ridge of Pen Tir form Cwmdu before coming back to Cwmdu via the very quiet back lanes.
Cwmdu is a good place to start and finish from for three reasons. a) easy to park at the Village Hall. b) It has a pub (The Farmers Arms) and a cafe. c) It is no more than 5 minutes drive from Gliffaes to the Village Hall car park in Cwmdu.
The Pen Tir ridge has a wonderful approach up through sunken lanes and then veering sharply north, off the road and up an ancient track boarded by some very old Ash trees which once upon of time must have been part of a cut and laid hedge. Breaking through the trees the path climbs steeply through the bracken. As you get higher the surrounding countryside reveals itself slowly. First the Cwmdu valley and all the trees, fields and hedges then the bulk of Pen Alt Mawr ridge behind you and then as you get to the top you can see Pen-y-Fan and the Central Beacons in the distance. A really glorious climb, well worth the effort on such a wonderful autumn day.
It is possible to take on so many routes from here I am not going to describe in detail the one we took, I will let the pictures below do the selling and if anyone is interested in doing this walk while at Gliffaes we shall be delighted to mark up your maps, make you a pack lunch and send you on your way. We took about two and three quarter hours to complete our circle but this can be lengthened or shortened as to your wishes.