ANGLESEY COAST PATH
Beryl MIke and I set off from Moelfre and first of all headed down to the sea to check out the lie of the land. Then we joind the coast path and headed out of Moelfre with the sun beating down on our heads it wasn't very long before we were removing fleeces.
After leaving Moelfre the coast path went inland for a short period and then we emerged onto a small bay Traeth Bychan. We passed over the pebbly beach then back up onto the cliff but mostly in green tunnels which hid the sea from view. I found this part of the walk rather disappointing.
Looking back to Traeth Bychan
An interesting water feature
Not much to say about the stretch from Traeth Bychan to Benllerch other than most of it was in cool green walkways during which period we stopped for a coffee break on a convenient bench, the sun vanished and didn't return for the remainder of the day.
Never seen a kissing gate like this before
Typical coast path scenery in this section
More of the pathway here was remote from the sea and it was with some relief that we eventually emerged onto the tidal flat area which marked the beginning of Red Wharf Bay. The tide was on the way out when we arrived but most of the boats were still afloat. It came as quite a surprise to realise how quickly the water drained from the bay area.
Our first sight of Red Wharf Bay
Red Wharf Bay is so named after the colour of its sand, so I'm led to believe. However, the redness of the sand wasn't apparent to me.
Heading alongside Red Wharf Bay on the tidal marshland
The 'Tidal route'
We opted to take the 'tidal route' and as it was getting near to lunch we looked for a sheltered spot to settle down. Lunchtime was taken up by looking at the huge variety of sea birds and waders present in ever inclreasing numbers in front of us as the tide receeded. Mergansers, oyster catchers, turnstones, plovers, egrets, curlews and so the list goes on.
It was a real surprise to us how many folks walked their dogs along the path, and on a number of occasions I reached for my lunchbox to save it from prying noses!
We eventually got going again and after a while the path stepped up onto a 10 foot hight wall which ran for quite a distance until eventually returning to the sands.
The elevated section of the coast path
Once we were back on the sands and in a short distance we emerged onto the road at Llanddona where we were reunited with Mikes car.
This morning the weather was a bit off so we drove to Llangefni and took a quick walk around the Dingle. If you ever get a chance and want to see red squirrels then this is the place to go as you're alomost guarnateed to see the little creatures. Whilst there we spent a pleasant if wet time walking out to the Cefni reservoir and back after which we headed to Cemeas as the weather was looking more promising.
A short walk in the Dingle, Llangefni
This section of the Anglesey Coastal Path is one of the most stunning and quite demanding in places and starts from Traeth Mawr, the main beach in Cemaes Bay.
Having already walked a couple of miles we were looking for lunch almost as soon as we set out.
St Patricks Bell
Looking back at Cemaes harbour
After leaving Cemaes we headed for St Patrick's and found a pleasantly sheltered spot for lunch near to an old limestone kiln.
Our lunchtime spot
We were soon done and were heading to St Patrick's church for a quick walk out to the tip of Llanbadrig Point whilst Geri waited for us at a convenient picnic bench.
Porth Padrig, Saint Patrick's Bay
Once reunited we continued to the more dramatic part of the route, pausing to admire a seal bobbing in the bay - a quick check with the binoculars showed the 'seal' it to be a fishing buoy! On our left was the islet of Middle Mouse which Beryl commented didn't look at all like a mouse.
Wylfa power station in the distance
Middle Mouse Islet
We were approaching the down and up of Llanlleiana Head. I had told Geri about how tiring this section was when we did it last year and she was a little aprehensive.
Llanlleiana Head and the King Edward VII Coronation Tower
Llanlleiana Head is the most northerly point in Wales. It produced porcelain from deposits of china clay found on Dinas Gynfor nearby. The works consists of a main building and a remote chimney, this was to direct the noxious fumes away from the working areas. The works closed in 1920 after being damaged by fire. Porth Llanlleiana is a small harbour used to service the factory.
We clambered up the giant steps, and in spite of her apprehensions Geri climbed up without complaint and was really pleased with herself for her accomplishment. We passed by the Coronation Tower as we continued our walk towards Hell's Mouth.
We were now above Porthwen and the first evidence of the brickworks,
The winding gear above Porthwen
the remains of the winding gear used to take trucks down a gravity incline. At the back of the works was a crushing shed then storage for the crushed stone in readiness for the production process. The clay was taken from the hillside to the south.
The brickworks at Porthwen
The remains of a brickworks with the three 'beehive' kilns clearly showing. It was opened at the turn of the 19th century to make refractory bricks for use in the steel industry. The bricks were exported by sea from the works' own harbour. The whole operation closed down at the start of the first world war and most of it has slowly rusted away ever since.
Once we had left Porthwen we were back up on top of the cliffs and headed into Amlwych and to Mike's car, conveniently parked not far from where we came onto the road.
We passed on walking yesterday as the weather was pretty grim. Nonetheless, Mike and Beryl did what they hoped was a short walk after which they would telephone the house and I'd go and collect them. In the event, Mike hadn't written down the correct phone number so they had to walk back after an appropriate cake and tea stop in Aberffraw.
Today we returned to Hen Felin and picked up where we left off on Saturday. Back down through the field of sheep and onto the coast path.
Looking back at the 'white ladies' navigation marker beacons
Our first descent took us via the headland at Cemlyn Bay where we paused for a coffee break, sheltering from the brisk wind and checking out the bird life. Numerous turnstones were paddling about on the seaweed.
turnstones on the seaweed
Then we walked for a short distance along the shingled causeway, stopping to check on the birdlife. No terns this time of year of course, but two Little Egrets made the journey worthwhile.
Along the top of the causeway
Two egrets looking distinctly unimpressed
Wyfa Power Station was next. Beryl had been remarking that it didn't seem to be getting any bigger, and yet, all of a sudden we were walking alongside it, then following the diverted paths around the headland.
RWE NPower has started testing land near the current Station to assess its suitability for a potential Wylfa B nuclear plant. Initial work is being carried out in the compound used by contractors over a period of two months for a number of ecological and environmental investigations across the site. Among the tests and surveys carried out will be assessments of the various species of plants and animals currently inhabiting the location, as well as noise and traffic measurements.
Beryl passes beneath the final pylon at the power station
Not being exerts on the decomissioning of the power station other than to read that it is current;y being de-fuelled, it would appear from the sizzling and crackling of the overhead cables, that power is still being generated at Wylfa.
Lengthy diversions around the site
lunch overlooking Porth yr Ofof
Eventually we were free from diversions and stopped for our lunch overlooking Porth yr Ofof after which it was an easy walk into Cemaes.
So here we are, back on Anglesey and it's just great to introduce our good friends Mike and Beryl to an area of coastal path that they had not walked before. Mike and Beryl introduced us to the wonders of coast path walking back in 2010 since when we have been totally hooked.
We opted to walk the more rugged sections of the Anglesey coast starting with this one. The weather was just perfect for this introductory walk but the forecast for the week ahead was not good. As it turned out this was the only fully sunny day!
We had barely walked a mile when we saw these Balwen Welsh Mountain sheep peacefully grazing beside the footpath.
At the time we had no idea of their name, and in spite of calling to them they resolutely refused to turn their heads so I could photograph their white faces.
As we progressed, a procession of 3 Irish ferries approached and docked at Holyhead. The first, a catarmaran being the most spectacular.
Heading north we followed the path which sometimes stayed on the cliffs and other times dropped right down to the sea shore.
As we approached the headland of Carreg-y-Frân once again we remarked on the high and dry beached old boat laying on its side.
Carreg-y-Frân the beached old boat laying on its side
We rounded the corner of the island and started heading east, descending through Ynys and Llyn y Fydlyn then climbing back up again.
Ynys and Llyn y Fydlyn
Just beyond the islet of West Mouse we started looking for the waymark which took us inland for a short distance to where Mike had parked his car at Hen Felin.
Today we walked from our holiday accommodation to he island of Cribinau. We'd considered catching the bus south from nearby then abandoned the idea for a straightforward walk there and back. So on a rather dull morning, straight after breakfast off we went - straight down onto the beach outside Craig-y-Llydan and heading south east along the sands and between the rocks towards Mynydd Bach.
Looking back at Craig-y-Llydan
The neolithic tomb
Ahead of us we had spotted in May was a sort of opening in the hillside, and after checking the maps, we'd discovered that it was a neolithic tomb. So that was going to be our first stop.
We arrived at the (now restored) chambered tomb and explored as much as we could given that the tomb itself is guarded by a substantial gate.
Looking back to Rhosneigr
We continued round the headland to Porth Trecastell, and small bay alongside the main A4080. There were a number of cars parked, and the tide was coming in, much to the consternation of the gulls on the sands. We continued round the bay and continued along the coast path until we approached a lookout post where the coast path is diverted inland to bypass the MoD land and the Anglesey Motor Racing Circuit. As we rejoined the coast itself the bay with the church of St Cwyfan perched on its tiny island.
The warning notices about slippery steps and getting cut off by the tide
The church was (unsurprisingly) closed
Looking back along the diminishing causeway from the church
We scrambled down the steps, being careful as we went and returned to the shore where we sheltered from the strong breeze and had our coffee. We then returned to our accommodation at Rhosneigr. A really interesting walk, and one that we'll no doubt repeat next year in better weather.